14th -18th December 2022

Lights out, spotlight on! After the grand success of previous editions, this year The Hague Highlights is spotlighting six special places to make hidden stories visible. From Wednesday 14th to Sunday 18th December, you are more than welcome to admire the light artworks with friends, colleagues or family members in the Museum Quarter, at the very heart of The Hague, from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m.

Why is the Tournooiveld (tournament field) actually called like that? How is the Mauritshuis related to flowers? The light artworks of The Hague Highlights are all different, but they each illustrate the story of that place in their own particular way. Because that’s exactly what we want to do with The Hague Highlights: tell The Hague’s stories using light. Every week a story per location will be revealed below and on our socials.

It’s raining flowers – Mauritshuis celebrating its 200th anniversary

This year the Mauritshuis is celebrating its 200th anniversary, with a light show by Jurjen Alkema. Flowers of beautiful still lifes, impressive cloudy skies and details of paintings moving over the Rijksmuseum (National Monument). Day becomes night and night becomes day again. Flowers sway and wake, open and close. A Dutch scene based on 17th century masters – the period in history when Dutch flower still lifes became tremendously popular. The beauty of flowers added a decorative touch to any living room. Still lifes are also very symbolic. The rose, tulip, hyacinth and sunflower each proclaim their own hidden message. If you cannot get enough of this light artwork, you are invited to visit the beautiful Mauritshuis and, in addition to all flower still lifes, marvel at world-famous masterpieces like The Girl with a Pearl Earring by Johannes Vermeer and The Anatomy Lesson of Dr. Nicolaes Tulp by Rembrandt van Rijn.

Voyage – Safe haven

Did you know that the Binnenhof (inner court) is the oldest – still functioning – parliamentary building in the world? The place is also known as the Hof van Holland (court of Holland). This is where the Netherlands takes its political decisions. How do we want to tackle global warming and our healthcare system? And how do we deal with refugees? The Hague is the city of Peace and Justice. It is therefore no coincidence that the Justice & Peace organisation is based here. It is a non-profit organisation dedicated to defending and encouraging respect for human rights and social justice. One of Justice & Peace’s initiatives is Samen Hier (Here Together), a national movement of citizens and organisations that contributes to the welcoming of refugees in the Netherlands. Groups of residents form inclusive communities with newcomers, where they can build dignified, meaningful and equal relationships. Together they form a safe haven. That is exactly what this artwork is about: a story about the safe haven that The Hague can and wants to offer. Artists Aether & Hemera have placed an interactive light artwork of 75 colour-changing origami boats in the Hofvijver, symbolising these safe havens in The Hague.

The gruesome murder of the De Witt brothers – The Prison Gate (Gevangenpoort) 

The lynching of the brothers Johannes and Cornelis de Witt is meticulously depicted at the Prison Gate Museum. The last political murder before Dutch politician Pim Fortuyn (2002). Both gentlemen were among the most famous Dutchmen of their time. Jurjen Alkema’s light projection takes you back to 1672 – the annus horribilis for all of the Netherlands and these two men in particular. The local militia and an furious crowds ended the lives of the two men in a gruesome way. Don’t worry, no more violent activities will take place here in 2022.

However, this installation allows you to reflect in these socially challenging times and takes you back to the sinister atmosphere of the moment 350 years ago.

Fragmented Appearances – Lange Vijverberg 

Lange Vijverberg is a beautiful place to stroll during in daytime or in the evening. Particularly at windless nights, you can see the rippling reflections of the outer walls of the Binnenhof in the Hofvijver. An enchanting sight indeed. But the reflections also make you give thought to questions like: How do politicians view society and what do you actually think of politics? Do we see each other the same way? Accompanied by a soundscape, inspired by the work of Peter Schat, artist Gertjan Adema stimulates the senses and thoughts with his light artwork called Fragmented Appearances. Between the monumental trees and at the walls of the Binnenhof, the mirror mosaic of the giant humming top plays with your inner and outer reflections. Walk by and let this be the place and time to hold a mirror up to yourself.

The Silver Parrot – Tournooiveld

Surely you have heard of the Tournooiveld (tournament field), a central location in the Museum Quarter of The Hague. Did you also know that real tournaments were held here back in the 14th to 17th century? At this historic location, shooting competitions were held between The Hague’s various shooters’ guilds. The guilds were the local heroes back then. As a police force, they guarded and defended the city in case of an attack. To find out who the best shooter of the guilds was, the parrot shooting activity was called into existence. They did not shoot at real parrots, but rather at a wooden statue in the shape of a parrot positioned on a high mast. The one who shot away the last bit of wood was the “king of the civic guards” for the year. This hero was awarded the Silver Parrot Prize. The interactive installation of VENI VIDI MULTIPLEX will take you back in time during The Hague HighLights. Join the annual event of yesteryear with a contemporary twist. Because in 2022, you can only win if you hit the Silver Parrot together at the same time and free it. To find out how it works, visit the Tournooiveld (between the Koninklijke Schouwburg (Royal Theatre) and the Hague Historical Museum) in the Museum Quarter and have a go yourself.

About The Hague Highlights

The Hague Highlights is organised by LUSTR + Spinner & Langkous and is made possible by the Municipality of The Hague among others.

Email: info@thehaguehighlights.nl
Press inquiries: info@hehaguehighlights.nl
Partnerships: matthijs@spinnerlangkous.nl