The famous architect Willem Marinus Dudok designed the first Bijenkorf in Rotterdam. It opened in 1930 and was the largest and most modern department store in Europe. In May 1940, the building was largely destroyed by the German bombings of Rotterdam.
The department store was located near where the Maritime Museum is now. A sculpture by Hendrik van den Eijnde is the only remnant of the old Bijenkorf department store. On one side of the stone, there is a procession of craftsmen, led by a musician with a guitar-like instrument. On the other side, modern means of transport like airplanes, boats, and trains are modeled. And on the head, in bold Art Deco letters, it spells out: De Bijenkorf. The sculpture is 3.5 meters long, 3 meters high, and 0.75 centimeters wide.
In 1973 it was placed at the Bijenkorf’s distribution center on a business park in Woerden. Now the Roterodamum Historical Society has taken the initiative to restore the artwork and bring it back to the Coolsingel. Together with restoration company Meesters-In, a plan is worked out for the restoration and reinstatement of the sculpture. In consultation with the Centrum voor Beeldende Kunst (visual arts centre), designer Jan Konings has made a design for a new plinth.
Roterodamum, the municipality of Rotterdam, various funds and organizations are contributing, but there is also a crowdfunding. So everybody can donate to bring this sculpture back to the center.
The artist impression is by: Frans Blok / 3develop