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public art

Buildings Get the Mondrian Treatment in the Netherlands

Studio VZ dresses The Hague in the artist's iconic red, blue, and yellow rectangles.
All images courtesy Studio VZ

Recognized as one of the modern masters of the Netherlands-based De Stijl movement, Piet Mondrian pioneered clean, abstract design hallmarked by a sharp, resonant grid of red, blue, and yellow blocks. The Mondrian image, iconic as they come in the modern art world, has now been replicated on a Dutch building in The Hague.

Imagined by Studio Vollaeszwart, aka Studio VZ, a design firm headed by Madje Vollaers and Pascal Zwart, the Mondrianized buildings are their latest urban project. The studio merges disciplines like architecture, sculpture, and couture fashion in their work, and their specialty is "dressing cities" in signature, culturally relevant designs. Their knack for transformative public art combines the curation of an exhibit with outdoor work that alters a cityscape.


Mondrian's signature Composition with Large Red Plane, Yellow, Black, Gray, and Blue, covers the stalwart City Hall building in The Hague. The city's cooperation with Studio VZ took into consideration Mondrian's history with the community. The Gemeente Museum, located in the city, has over 250 paintings from the abstract artist in its collection.

Madje Vollaers spoke with Creators about the overall process of making a typical "city dressing" into a reality. "The [Gemeente] museum checked all the designs before they went into production. We went in the city to investigate what beautiful buildings [were available] to dress. Not every building is suitable for city-dressing—the skin and the visibility are important."

In total, four building facades sport the signature Mondrian design. See a few views of Studio VZ's public-facing handiwork below:

See more work from Studio VZ, as well as more images from the Mondrian city dressing of The Hauge, here.


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