Creatual Chalk Talk Drawing

Chalk Talk


Opening of an exhibit about broken relationships

Oude Kerk is the oldest building in Amsterdam and is situated in the middle of the Red Light District. This tiny chapel grew into an impressive church with stained glass windows, organs and the tombs of people like Saskia van Uylenburgh, Rembrandt’s wife. The church’s wooden predecessor was built on an artificial mound which served as a cemetery. Later, out of necessity, they had to bury people inside the church too. By now, over 10,000 people are buried there beneath more than 2,500 gravestones.

Oude Kerk still serves as ‘Amsterdam’s Living Room’, a place in which to contemplate and be inspired, where past and present connect. The combination of contemporary art with the rich history of the church, attracts lovers of cultural heritage as well as inquisitive city dwellers. The building often hosts solo exhibitions by artists like Tony Oursler.

The Creative Alchemist was approached in connection with the opening of the travelling exhibition entitled Memento, or ‘The Museum of Broken Relationships’.



The situation:
A religious monument that connects with contemporary art and culture.

The context:
Memento. A (travelling) exhibition.

The request:
A creatual that resonates with the atmosphere in the church and the exhibition.

Number of participants:

The Creative Alchemist’s response:
A new piece of ‘calcium’ in which meaningful memories are stored.


How the creatual Chalk Talk plays out

The travelling exhibition Momento, or ‘The Museum of Broken Relationships’, ran for several months at Oude Kerk. The exhibition consisted of objects that were donated by people from a wide variety of villages and cities in numerous countries. The objects represent what a broken relationship means to these people: a bottle of tears, a cuddly toy, an item of clothing. During the opening ceremony, a large circle is drawn in chalk on the old stone floor. The guests receive a small bag containing a piece of chalk and an instruction card, and they are invited to write their own story of grief, happiness or some other meaningful memory about a broken relationship, inside the circle. The next morning in the empty church, the Creative Alchemist carefully sweeps the chalk in which the messages were written into a small bag. In her studio she transforms this into a new piece of chalk, brimming with personal stories.