Jan Snoeck, Het Gezin (the Family, 1979)
'It becomes clear immediately: these 'persons' connect. An aspect of the creation of Almere is also included in the work. A combined action between people, that is what initially created Almere. Together they built the new city,' says artist Jan Snoeck about his artwork The Family in Almere Haven. 1
The Family by Jan Snoeck was realized on the Markt in Almere Haven in 1979, when Almere was only three years old. This made the artwork the first to be placed in the public space of the city. The styled human figures sit opposite from each other in a circle. They took place on concrete 'benches'. Their bodies have been reduced to caterpillar-like forms. The Family refers to the young city in which many young families moved to from especially Amsterdam. 2
Before, Jan Snoeck usually worked with stone, concrete, and metal. Since the 60s, he turns to clay, a material which is perfect for Snoeck's organic form language. The clay sculptures are being poured in concrete, and afterwards finished with a special glaze to protect it. Often Snoeck applies bright primary colors, like he did with The Family. His modeled figures look like they have stepped out of a childish fantasy. The figures are often recognizable, but sometimes the artist gives a free interpretation of reality.
Besides monumental works for companies and the public space, Jan Snoeck also designs and creates small ceramic objects. Snoeck attended the Royal Academy in The Hague where he took a course in sculpturing. His work has been acquired by, amongst others, Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, Gemeentemuseum Den Haag, Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen in Rotterdam, Frans Halsmuseum Haarlem, and Princessehof in Leeuwarden.
Jan Snoeck, Het Gezin (The Family)
Jan Snoeck, 1927, Rotterdam
Het Gezin, 1979
ceramic and concrete, 3 x 3 x 2,5 meter
Commissioned by Westland / Utrecht Hypotheek Bank NV
De Collectie Almere / Museum De Paviljoens
Location: Markt, Almere Haven
1. Jan Snoeck, De Almare, 18 sept 1978.
2. Currently, Almere has a more diverse demographic composition