Utrecht’s Urban Gnome

For the past six years, a strange red-hatted kabouter (gnome) has been popping up in spots around Utrecht. Rather than showing up in 3D form in gardens, he shows up, instead, on walls and other flat surfaces. KBTR (Kabouter) is Utrecht’s most famous graffiti artist and has even been compared to Keith Haring.

There’s a website “by and for KBTR enthusiasts” and now there’s a book that will be released on October 27. The book, which features 160 full-color pages depicting some of the many appearances of the kabouter around town, is available in a limited run of 1000 copies and is only sold through Revenge, a concept-store at Vredenburg. There will be a special presentation of the book at the store on the 27th, from 17:00-20:00. There’s more information, in Dutch, on the Holland Streetart Flickr group.

I first came across the kabouter at the Griftpark, although I can’t say if they’re all originals or imitations. Still, I’ve since noticed them in other spots around town and always enjoy seeing them.