Twice a year since 2015, Gemeentemuseum Den Haag has invited a nationally or internationally known writer to become its ‘writer in residence’. Miek Zwamborn (b. 1974) was the first. With her fascination for unspoilt landscapes and unusual weather conditions, she went in search of ‘confined nature’. Her poems and a selection of artworks were displayed in Tamed Skies (21 March 2015 to 21 June 2015).
The first thing Miek Zwamborn noticed in the Gemeentemuseum’s repository was the sketchbooks. Magnificent objects, including the sketchbooks of Jacob Maris and Isaac Israels, full of notes, sketches and drawings. ‘Sketchbooks let us look over the shoulder of the maker, lend us their eyes,’, says Zwamborn. ‘They are books full of life, in which you see the artist’s search, sometimes skilful, sometimes hesitant. Drawings are often superimposed over one another, so you might get a cow walking on the sea on the other side of the page.’ This inspired her to make her own sketchbook.
Read some of the poems Miek Zwamborn wrote about works in our collection below: