The province of Drenthe is famous for its hunebeds, the oldest monuments in the country. The prehistoric tombstones were built of boulders transported to Drenthe during the Ice Age. After more than 200,000 years, one of those stones told Dutch artist Bart Eysink Smeets that it had had enough in the Netherlands.
What stones want
‘The tombstones are Drents heritage, but the boulders themselves don’t come geologically from Drenthe of course. I like the idea that the stones want to go back to Scandinavia. That they find it here boring,’ explains Eysink Smeets to RTV Drenthe.
A rolling stone
‘It started as a joke, but in the end I really wanted to bring one boulder home. Especially since you can trace its area of origin quite specifically,’ says the artist. Originally, the boulder comes from the Åland islands between Finland and Sweden. After the Ice Age, it eventually ended up in the North. The big stone travelled around various places in Drenthe, with the village of Borger as its last location.
Wasted no time, Eysink Smeets received permission from the Borger-Odoorn municipality and raised the necessary money for transportation through crowdfunding. Last month, the artist hoisted the two-ton passenger on a trailer and hit the road to Finland.
East or west, home is best
After a journey of some 1500 kilometers, the boulder was delivered to Mariehamn, the capital of the Åland islands in the Baltic Sea. As reported by RTV Drenthe, the prodigal son of the Ice Age was cordially welcomed with a trumpet solo and the recitation of a poem. After making sure that the stone found a warm home, Eysink Smeets took leave, although he solemnly promised to visit the boulder again.