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05 May 2019

Commemorate the war in the Cobra museum on liberation day (5-5-19)

Being quiet with Lucebert

No eating and no talking with each other for one hour

On 5 May, all of the Netherlands will pause to commemorate the country’s liberation. The German army surrendered on this day in 1945, bringing the Second World War to an end for the Netherlands. Since then, the Netherlands has strived to be the capital of freedom, independence and tolerance. To celebrate its continual liberation and societal freedoms, various activities and events are planned throughout the city. The Cobra Museum is organizing a memorial for the second time in conjunction with the Amsterdam May 4 and 5 committee. On 5 May there are various Freedom meals, lectures, theater performances, etc. in Amsterdam and surroundings with small or large stories, sometimes simple and intimate, others expanded. the various forms of commemoration bring people together at the table and initiate dialogue.

This year, we put the focus on the the commotion that arose following the publication of Wim Hazeu’s biography on Lucebert in 2018. Some opinion makers, authors and commentators are invited to participate. You are invited to participate in this special dialogue. The participation is free.


Being quiet with Lucebert

No eating and no talking with each other for one hour


The Cobra Museum organizes together with publicist Dr. Jan Oegema a special freedom meeting on 5 May in the Cobra Museum. The day will be dominated by Wim Hazeu’s Lucebert biography and the flood of responses to it in the media. During the war, Lucebert appeared to sympathize with Nazi ideology and the associated anti-Semitism. Afterwards, he always kept this episode secret and referred to it indirectly in his work, at most.

The revelation caused a shock that is still shaking, given that the second book publication on the issue will soon be published. The coming commemoration on freedomday May the fifth, is a good opportunity to reflect on all this. Or rather: sit still.

In the middle of the storm, Oegema published a piece in De Groene Amsterdammer in which he was surprised at the amount of hurried opinions and the lack of reflection. He concludes his essay fantasizing about an event for all those culture lovers who, like him, have more questions than answers and struggle with Lucebert’s silence.

“Lucebert was silent and now I want to remain silent, along with others. I imagine a meeting in which one hour is kept silent. A short explanation at the beginning, just one poem at the end … a happening-like ritual intended to help time do its work. Everyone alone with his thoughts. All without cameras and reporters. “(DGA, March 14, 2018)

The Cobra Museum has embraced this idea and invited Dr. Jan Oegema to lead such a meeting. This is open to all interested parties and takes place in a side room of the museum at 1300hrs (until 1400Hrs). Afterwards there is an opportunity to have a drink in the cafe of the museum and to exchange ideas.


Oegema is a publicist and gardener, obtained his PhD on Lucebert’s poetry and organizes the retreats and reading clubs of the Open monastery (www.openklooster.nl).

Reserve your free silence spot here

Read more about Lucebert here

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