Being There


Senses & Creatorship – First & Second Lesson.

The assignment we got during the first lessons, was to find a location which we could observe and analyse. To determine what triggered our senses, which senses where triggered and what kind of an experience this would give. In the upcoming weeks we will repeatedly visit the same location and gather more information, to eventually base our final work on.

We had to gather pictures, video’s, recordings, objects (if possible), make notes and react by makeing work such as drawings.

the Old Graveyard

I decided to choose the old graveyard in my city as my location. I have always been interessed in graveyards and liked to go to this one with my mom once in a while.

The graveyard is located in the middle of the city, surrounded by roads and across from a shoppingcenter. However, as soon as you step foot in the graveyard, the outside world seems to disappear, leaving a serene, calm and peaceful place.

Walk inside and outside the Old Graveyard.

The graveyard was maintained properly, the grass was cut and some of the overgrown plants from last summer, where removed, revealing even more graves I hadn’t seen before.

There were these big, impressive graves – most were family graves – that still stood strong and almost completely undamaged.

a Unique looking Gravestone.

I walked on a path made of loose paddles, making along with the soft rain peaceful sounds. There were beautiful, thick, old trees and coloured leaves falling to the ground. I even heard and saw alot of birds. All of this made the experience of walking on the graveyard even more sereen and peaceful.

There were also alot of children graves, both sad and peacefull.

I noticed there were alot without a lastname or dates, giving a more bitter taste to the experience.

There was however one grave (5th picture) that was still completely intact, clean and had fresh flowers, that have had been planted there in the past 2 weeks. The grave was for a baby that lived less than a month and lived in 1946. The parents of the baby are probably to old to still visit the grave, so I’m guessing that someone like a sibling is the person taking care of this grave.

This grave was quite weird to me too. It only says “father and mother” but there are no names or dates on it.

What I also noticed, is that there were alot of graves of people that died during The Second World War or in the following 5 years after. Which again, left a sour taste in my mouth.

Some of the graves were almost or completely unreadable because of how old they are and the erosion with the weather conditions. It was a very strong image showing that everyone will be forgotten in the end. Even the people with the big expensive graves, will eventually disappear.

Some graves had cracks in them, some were missing pieces and some gravestones were even completely gone. This honestly broke my heart.

Damaged Graves.

To make it even worse, there were also gravestones that only had a number on them. These people have already been forgotten before they were even buried.

I started to notice how the numbers would keep following up properly, except for some places where it would skip 1 number. between the 2 graves where a number was skipped, there was a space – only covered in grass without a gravestone – as big as a grave is. I came to the conclusion that those spaces between are graves aswell, just without us knowing. It is incredibly sad that these people aren’t even recognized.

Missing Gravestones.

Somewhere in the graveyard I saw 2 white poles on one side and 2 more poles on the other side. Exactly in the middle was a plate with some text and some flowers. to read the text you had to walk all the way up to it. This turned out to be a mass grave with approximately 140 people laying underneath my feet. Knowing that I just walked over a mass grave without knowing it, was quite a shock and emotional.

While I was in the graveyard, a what older woman walked in. I saw her walk over to 3 gravestones, located somewhat apart from eachother, and put something down. I didn’t realize that there were still actually people visiting graves in this old graveyard.

My reflection

If I listened to the first this I experience through my senses, it is a serene, peaceful place. However, de details gave me emotional, sad, angry shocked and overall heavy emotions. The experience was a true emotional rollercoaster.


During my second lesson I got feedback on my collection of the first visit. I was complimented on the emotions I worded. I was tolded to focus in on the keywords.
I also got the tip to go when its dark and see how the experience changes, or maybe stays the same. This is going to be hard however, because the graveyard is open between 8.00 am and 5.30 pm, and only on workdays.


For the next lesson, I will work with my teachers feedback;
I’m going to take a look at my collection and find the keywords in my work. With these keywords in mind, I will visit the graveyard for the second time and make some reactive work.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *