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Virtual Earth map of Open Air Museum, Zwijndrecht, Holland

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The heart of the park would surround the juncture of the three rivers between Dordrecht, Papendrecht and Zwijndrecht. The Dutch Sculptors' Association decided to develop the first phase of the sculpture park here. The association has two hundred members, a number of them with large sculptures in stock. Also other Dutch sculptors were invited to submit work for the selection. Queen Beatrix opened the park in the spring of 1996. It is the beginning of a permanent exhibition of sculpture that will have a total length of around thirty-five kilometers. It is the only one of its kind that will be exploited and owned by the artists themselves. That, which initially started out to be an exhibition of Finnish art, resulted in a permanent sculpture park. The first exhibition, therefore, had to focus on Finland. In 1997 it took place in cooperation with the Papendrecht Museum of Modern Art, where smaller sculptures as well as paintings were presented. In 1997 the sculpture parkís organization was transformed into the Open Air Museum Drecht Banks Sculpture Park , in short OPAM. In the summer of 1999 the OPAM organized a second biennial following a symposium of Bulgarian sculptors. It was opened in that summer by Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands and the Bulgaian King Simeon.


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