May I had imagined quite differently! Isn’t this month called the merry month of May? And why is it only so dark? And so damn cold? My plans for the second day were made anyway, but I must confess, motivation was a problem that morning. Even I had heard about the old NDSM shipyard, and found masses of images in www knows it all, what I found there, I wasn’t prepared for.
My way to NDSM lead me to Amsterdam Centraal, Amsterdams main station, where the ferry to NDSM starts. The shortest way was to take a walk along Prinsengracht, which leads to the station. I was accompanied by street art all the way. Stencils, stickers, tiles and murals of national and international artists of the street art scene. NDSM Docklands ferry line 906 runs every 30 minutes from Central Station and took me in 15 minutes to the NDSM docklands – for free. Formerly the largest shipbuilding company in the world, the Nederlandsche Dok en Scheepsbouw Maatschappij (or Netherlands Dock and Shipbuilding Company, NDSM) is located on the banks of the River IJ in Amsterdam Noord. After operations shut down in 1979, the area, with enormous warehouses, was largely abandoned until, several years ago, developers started transforming it to a cultural hotspot with a vibrant artist community and an ever-expanding variety of bars and restaurants. When you arrive by ferry – passing by an old Russian submarine and a crane that’s been converted into a boutique hotel – you’re entering a special area. The grounds exceeding the size of ten football pitches and are littered with street art, which is legal here. Legal walls generally produce pieces of high quality. NDSM makes no exception. Graffiti, paste-ups, sculptures, installations – I couldn’t get enough and after hours and miles I had to surrender. I couldn’t go any longer. I was gimpy and my eyes were popping out of my head. I have to come back in summer 2018, when in this enormous warehouse space the new Amsterdam street art museum will be opened. Curator Peter Ernst Coolen from Street Art Today is currently working on setting up the future museum together with his team. . Brazilian artist Eduardo Kobra recently has created a 24-meter high portrait of Anne Frank on the facade of the future museum.
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