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The Great Rift (De Grote Verscheuring)

Pierluca degli Innocenti

About this artwork.

The statue consists of one large bronze slab that has been torn open as if by a great internal explosion. Pierluca Degli Innocenti was of Italian origin, but since 1960 had lived in France, which was torn apart in those years by the tragedy of the Algerian war. The artist was fiercely moved by this war and other tensions that dominated his time. He expressed his horror in La Grande Lacerazione, a series of sculptures that includes The Great Rift. The sculpture is a replica of an aluminium one that was on display at an exhibition in the Keukenhof in 1965. There the student association Vindicat Atque Polit bought the statue, and donated it to the city of Groningen in honour of its 150th anniversary. 
Initially, the artwork stood on the Grote Markt, in front of Vindicat's Mutua Fides building. In 1977 it moved to the corner of Grote Markt-Kreupelstraat, before disappearing into the depot in 1994 as a result of the redevelopment of the Grote Markt. Due to the ongoing redevelopment plans for the Grote Markt, the Groningen CBK decided, in consultation with Vindicat, to give the piece a place in the Gedempte Kattendiep in 2004. The Great Rift can remain here permanently, which is of great importance given its relatively fragile state.


Gedempte Kattendiep 150

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Facts & Figures.

  • Design
    Pierluca degli Innocenti

  • District

  • Year of creation

  • Art type
    Freestanding sculpture

  • Material

  • Dimensions
    h 1,20 x b 2,50 x d 0,70 m; sokkel h 1,66 x b 0,80 x d 0,50 m