Souvenirs van de Woeste Grond

Heidi Linck + Hans Jungerius

Artistic research on narratives behind absences in landscapes in Overijssel
Intuitive walks through rural landscapes, observations and interviews with local residents
Photography and text
Commissioned by Kunstenlab in collaboration with Landschap Overijssel

Overijssel knows many types of landscape, all shaped by pre-historical geological events and all in continuous transformation. Kunstenlab invited me and Hans Jungerius to explore 8 landscapes and collect narratives about these transformations. I undertook walks in Losser, Staphorst, Fortmond and Lemelerveld without any map, guided by curiosity. My research focused on sites that carried disappearances and the narratives behind absences in the landscape that I observed during my explorations. I photographed these absences and I interviewed local residents about their memories. As most of them had been farmers all their lives and were over 80 years old, they could still imagine the objects that had disappeared in their surroundings.

In Staphorst, stories about fake houses were shared. These fake houses were built during the land-exchanges (‘ruilverkavelingen’) to increase the value of the lands by suggesting occupation, and were removed after.


In and around Losser, the water in the river Dinkel used to change colour every time the textile factories used another dye. People remember this river to colour red, blue, orange and even black. Since the factories are closed, the dye colours have disappeared and life came back in this river.


‘Erve Beernink’ is a traditional local farm that was built in 1644. The land was sold and the farm was to be demolished. However, it was saved by decomposing it into its building parts: wooden beams, bricks, roof tiles and so on. These parts were transported to an unknown location, where they are stored, waiting to be rebuilt as the original farm on a new location. As this new location still has to be found, it today is a farm hidden in boxes.


The stories were collected and published on a temporary project website by Kunstenlab. They were also used as a source for inspiration for contemporary souvenirs, designed by artists and designers.