Stories in Stone

2022, 2 pieces of diabas and an anodised aluminium strip, 75*45*15 cm

The text on the aluminum strip is: For 5000 years stone and clay fired to stone have been the best preservers of writing art. From the oldest written story in the world, the Gilgamesh epic, to the poem of the Letters of Utrecht: once set in stone, writing is eternal.

The cuneiform expression means the art of writing, see the Pennsylvania Sumerian Dictionary or Oxford Sumerian Library, and dates from 2500 BC. The written Dutch text means the same. Cuneiform itself dates back to 3000 BC, so the gap between the two halves bridges 5000 years of stories set in stone.

The text on the stone was first drawn with a sandblasting machine by Gerrit Peele at the stonemasonry Het Steenen Huys in Woerden. The text was then manually carved. The text on the aluminum strip is laser engraved by Fablab-Tinqerinq in Houten.

Exhibition in the library on the Neude, January 2024
Verhalen in Steen has been exhibited in the library on the Neude in Utrecht during the poetry week 2024, together with the Letters van Utrecht. The poem of the Letters van Utrecht looks to the future, my sculpture looks to the past. The title of the exhibition was ‘Carved in stone: from the oldest writing art to the Letters of Utrecht’. All aspects of this oldest and most future-proof writing art were explained with a talk show and demonstration of letter carving. A short photo report of this can be found here.