We went to the Inktpot today, as part of the national lead-up to the official Open Monument Day in September. Between now and then, a different monument will be open each month (week?) throughout the country as a bit of a teaser to the main event. Utrecht kicked things off with the opening of the ProRail head offices, which are housed in the building known as the Inktpot because of the shape of it (notice the main tower in the center). The UFO was a leftover from an art installation back in 2000 and has become just as recognizable a landmark.
The building is a mass of bricks and quite heavy in appearance, but it’s full of little decorative details that make it surprisingly interesting and attractive. I really enjoyed visiting the building and seeing things like these office numbers, done in a stylish font and placed on the ground.
There were a couple of towers that were pretty impressive, as they rose, brick after brick, sometimes as high as 25 meters. I’ve got more photos to upload to Flickr. Until I do, these will give you a taste of things to come. I’ll end on a high note, with a view looking up the main tower to the skylight at the top.
I’ve already made my plans for Saturday. I’m going to the Inktpot. It’s the big brick building with the UFO on it. You see, this weekend, the building, which serves as the head offices for ProRail, is going to be open to the public as part of the Monument Day Relay. As a way of celebrating 25 years of Open Monument Day, a different monument will be open — throughout the country — each weekend until the official celebration in September. This weekend, it happens to be the Inktpot.
The Inktpot, as it is affectionately nicknamed, was built between 1918 and 1921 and designed by railway engineer G.W. van Heukelom. The building features a contemporary design with elements of Cubism and German Expressionism. It stands 60 meters high and is the largest brick building in the Netherlands. The entire building contains approximately 22 million bricks. There’s a history of the building in one of the main halls, and the interior itself is supposed to be quite stunning, especially the view when you look up to the top of the tower. I’ve seen photos of the interior before, so I’m particularly looking forward to visiting.