Where does the traveller go?
The work of art that Frank Havermans proposes for the location on the south side of Drachten, at exit 29 of the A7, will certainly attract attention in the wide landscape. The object that appears on the horizon appears to have just landed, but could also leave again.
The steel construction is reminiscent of a spaceship or a crane, but also of a city gate. The movement that the passer-by thinks he perceives in KAPKAR / A7-29 X FT is correct: the artwork moves. The flying boat-like element at the top slowly lowers up and down.
Highway A7, exit 29, park at Oude Slingeweg on the other side of the highway, walk through the bicycle underpass to the South Gate.
location: Drachten, Netherlands
client: Municipality Smallingerland, TAAK
manufacture and engineering: SMST, Drachten
construction technic : Ingenieursbureau Boorsma, Drachten
contractor: Aannemersbedrijf Eikelenboom, Drachten
coating: Veenstra Coatings, Heegh
material: steel, laquer
© visuals: Jaap Janssen
KAPKAR / A7-29 X FT (2021) van Frank Havermans. In opdracht van Gemeente Smallingerland en begeleid door Stichting TAAK. Foto: Victoria Ushkanova.
Frank Havermans took travel as the starting point in developing the concept. Travel is often experienced as inconvenience and the goal is to get to the destination as quickly as possible. However, Havermans investigates the journey itself, being on the way. The wonder about all those hurried fellow travellers: where do they come from and where are they going?
But also, the difference in time that the slow traveller, the walker or cyclist experiences, compared to the person who drives or flies. The artwork will be placed on the side walls of the bicycle tunnel that lies under the A7. Exactly at a point in the landscape where walker, cyclist and motorist intersect. At this location, the work of art also takes on the function of a city gate that connects city and country in a special way.
For the technical realization of KAPKAR / A7-29 X FT, Havermans is looking at techniques from traditional shipbuilding. It is not without reason that the design refers to a gantry portalcrane of a shipyard. The connection of the Frisians with water and shipbuilding is historic and the shipyard of Drachten was the basis of the industry in this region.