High Road to Culture in Flanders and the Netherlands

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High Road to Culture in Flanders and the Netherlands

Emma Zuiderveen - Cobalt Blue
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© Collectie Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam / Sanne De Wilde
© Collectie Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam / Sanne De Wilde © Collectie Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam / Sanne De Wilde
Young Writers on Invisible Labour
literature
arts

Emma Zuiderveen - Cobalt Blue

Eighteen young authors have brought nineteenth-century artefacts from the Rijksmuseum to life. They have taken inspiration from the question: what do you see when you look at these objects with an eye for invisible labour? Together with Emma Zuiderveen we look at the blue in Claude Monet’s 1884 painting La Corniche near Monaco. ‘Tourists do the rounds at a trot /until their lungs are full and fed /with tiny bits of history.’

Cobalt Blue: Claude Monet’s blue

You see me glisten in the waves and suddenly emerge from a plain. I’m carried on every breeze. Scattered, I woosh past backgrounds and crash against the firmament. I climb and I take root. I attach myself to fibres – linen holds me lovingly.

I work for all the big names. I work for Monet.

You see me but you don’t see me. I disappear behind glass, plastic and metal. I dress in a black cloak, bearing the imprint Li-on and the trademark CE. I fix and I stabilise. I’m an electronic whizz-kid; why don’t you put your ear to your smartphone and listen to my silent power.

I work for all the big names. I work for Apple, Dell, Google, Tesla and Microsoft.

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Young Writers on Invisible Labour

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