Torentje van Drienerlo

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Torentje van Drienerlo
Universiteit Twente Torentje van Drienerlo 2005-07-10.jpg
The Torentje van Drienerlo on the campus of the University of Twente
Artist Wim T. Schippers
Location University of Twente campus, Enschede
Coordinates 52°14′34″N6°51′13″E / 52.24278°N 6.85361°E / 52.24278; 6.85361 Coordinates: 52°14′34″N6°51′13″E / 52.24278°N 6.85361°E / 52.24278; 6.85361

The Torentje van Drienerlo (pronounced [tɔrɛntʲə vɑn drinɛrloː] ; Dutch for "Drienerlo Steeple") is a 1979 artwork by Dutch artist Wim T. Schippers, located on the campus of the University of Twente in Enschede.



Schippers made the tower long after he had left a career in visual arts for television. In the 1960s, he was associated with the Fluxus movement and had gained a reputation for absurdist and controversial works of art, including the famous Pindakaasvloer (19621967), consisting basically of a floor covered with peanut butter. He worked on short films as well, with Wim van der Linden and others, but his relations with the established art world were troubled and by the early 1970s he was working almost exclusively on writing and making television shows for the VPRO Schippers referred to television as "the greatest gallery in the world". [1]

The work of art consists of the spire of a church tower rising up just above the surface of a pond, suggesting that the church itself has sunk deeply. This partly mysterious quality was Schippers' goal, and was supposed to bring life to the college campus. [2]

On the occasion of Schippers' seventieth birthday, a replica of the tower was revealed in Kortrickvijver, near the Willy Dobbeplantsoen in Olst. [3] The replica, like the Willy Dobbeplantsoen, was made by the "Gentlemen's Society" De Nuts Neut. In February 2013 the tower had been moved to an area in between the summer- and winter dikes of the IJssel river, an area that promptly flooded. [4]

Campus life

The University of Twente is proud of its extensive collection of art objects on campus, and the tower is the best-known of them all. [5] As a landmark on the UT campus it is a center of year-round activity. In the wintertime, the pond is the location for short-track skating events [6] and the end location for the Elfvijvertocht (the UT variation on the Elfstedentocht since 1987, but with skaters skating on eleven ponds instead of by eleven cities). [7] During soccer tournaments Dutch and German students occupy the tower alternately to hang national flags on, [8] [9] and during rush week events students swim to it—in March. [10]

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Sjef van Oekel was a popular TV comedy character created by Dutch artist Wim T. Schippers and played by Dutch comedian, singer and actor Dolf Brouwers (1912–1997). Van Oekel started as a side character in De Fred Hachéshow in 1972, but became such a cult figure that he gained his own television show, Van Oekel's Discohoek, songs and even a comic strip, all written by Schippers.

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  1. Kempers, Paul (5 March 1997). "Adynamische pindakaas". De Groene Amsterdammer (in Dutch). Retrieved 24 August 2013.
  2. Alferink, Robert Kemper (12 September 2011). "Vereniging Oudheidkamer Twente - Verhalen: Kunst en historie: Kunst en architectuur op de Universiteit Twente" (in Dutch). Mijn Stad Mijn Dorp. Retrieved 24 August 2013.
  3. "Replica 'Torentje van Drienerlo' in Kortrickvijver". De Stentor (in Dutch). 1 July 2012. Retrieved 21 August 2013.
  4. "Actueel!" (in Dutch). Herensocieteit. Retrieved 24 August 2013.
  5. "De bijzondere kunstcollectie van de campus". UT Nieuws (in Dutch). 14 September 2011. Retrieved 24 August 2013.
  6. "Video: Kortebaankampioenschappen UT". UT Nieuws (in Dutch). 9 February 2012. Retrieved 24 August 2013.
  7. "'Die gezelligheid, dat is bijgebleven'". UT Nieuws (in Dutch). 7 February 2011. Retrieved 24 August 2013.
  8. "Weinig oranje op campus". UT Nieuws (in Dutch). 13 June 2012. Retrieved 24 August 2013.
  9. "'Wraak' om Duitse vlag aan Torentje". UT Nieuws (in Dutch). 13 June 2012. Retrieved 24 August 2013.
  10. "Matrozen bestormen Torentje". UT Nieuws (in Dutch). 1 March 2013. Retrieved 24 August 2013.