black and white

Who are you and who am I? Are we sharing our society and our culture? Should we embrace each other or should we protect ourselves against ‘the other’? What do we fear? Are we capable to feel safe between peers or do we only feel safe as the conqueror, as the strongest? How do we take responsibility for the past? Am I white or black? Should I answer this question at all and what difference does it make anyway whether you’re white or black? 

How did the Dutch society develop after slavery was abolished in 1863? What is the influence that the integration of Surinamese and Antillean's has had on the Dutch society and how does it affect me?

Many questions to think about, and that is exactly the goal of the “Black and White” exhibition in the Tropenmuseum in Amsterdam.

We were asked to design this exhibition which mostly consists of historical press and archive material. To be able to deploy and communicate the subject as broadly as possible, we applied several layers. In the middle of the great light hall of the Tropenmuseum we placed a large structure in the form of the Keti Koti logo. Around this structure you could see in chronologic order how the Netherlands changed over the years. A number of items were explored even further. Among them, of course, the debate regarding “Zwarte Piet” - “Black Pete”.

The exhibition ends at “the square”, a stand where performances, films, debates and other activities are regularly organized.

Developed and designed in cooperation with, and commissioned by Arjan Braaksma / Burobraak.