Edition 2004


Hollandse Velden

In September 1995, Hans van der Meer started taking photographs of low division amateur-football games. He went out looking for football in its original form, as it had started more than hundred years ago: a piece of land, 22 players, and no spectators around the pitch, just a horse in the next meadow. The image is far away from the image we know from professional football. About his project Hollandse Velden he says: “Football is a part of our culture and football-grounds form part of our landscape. There are proportionately more grounds in Holland then in any other country in the world. Even in the smallest municipality you will find at least one club. Taking photographs for my album Hollandse Velden I visited over 350 locations all over the country. I was looking for those situations where I could make a combination of a field with players and an interesting landscape in the background. I needed the world outside the field to show literally that football is part of our culture.” The first edition of the album Hollandse Velden (De Verbeelding, 1998, 68 photographs, colour) came out during the World Cup in France 1998. A second edition came out later that year, as the first was sold off in one month. The photographs were exhibited during the World Cup in France 1998 at the Institut Néerlandais in Paris. They were shown together with the project ‘No Mundo Maravilhoso do Futebol’ initialized by the British photographer Julian Germain. In December 1998, the Hollandse Velden exhibition was presented in the Nederlands Foto Instituut in Rotterdam. In 2000 and 2001 the work was exhibited in Kyoto National Museum (Japan), on the World Expo in Hannover (Germany), in Evora (Portugal), Prato (Italy) and in the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam. “The pictures are funny, moving, touchingly human and unmistakably Dutch. Middle aged players fall over in front of goal, mistiming tackles, getting injured and taking throw-ins under huge domed skies in immense flat landscapes dominated by the distant horizon.” ‘Brilliant Orange’, by David Winner, Bloomsbury London, 2000

Exhibition realised with the collaboration of Paradox, Edam (Netherlands). With the backing of the Mondriaan Fondation.

  • Institutional partners

    • République Française
    • Région Provence Alpes Côté d'Azur
    • Département des Bouches du Rhône
    • Arles
    • Le Centre des monuments nationaux est heureux de soutenir les Rencontres de la Photographie d’Arles en accueillant des expositions dans l’abbaye de Montmajour
  • Main partners

    • Fondation LUMA
    • BMW
    • SNCF
    • Kering
  • Media partners

    • Arte
    • Lci
    • Konbini
    • Le Point
    • Madame Figaro
    • France Culture