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tinker designs animated story colonies of benevolence


The seven Dutch and Belgian Colonies of Benevolence share a single unique history. Their goal: to eradicate poverty in the 19th century by making poor paupers into good, hard-working citizens. From 1818, the Society of Benevolence founded seven agricultural colonies within seven years. Thousands of poor lived and worked here under a strict regime. The hard work and fresh air was meant to bring them back on the right path and make better people of them.

Tinker Imagineers has created audio-visual productions at four locations: Frederiksoord (NL), Prison Museum Veenhuizen (NL), Merksplas (BE) and Ommerschans (NL). The animated story is projected onto a unique medium, inspired by the landscape of the colonies. In an interplay of surfaces and lines, the story that links the seven colonies is told. The driving force behind the Society of Humanitarianism, Johannes van den Bosch, takes the audience with him in his vision of a better world. In a backdrop of animated paintings and prints, Johannes van den Bosch leads you on a tour of 'his' Colonies.

Since 2012, its sites have been reconstituted under the title 'Colonies of Benevolence '. "One History - Seven Stories" combines four visitor centres in the Netherlands and Belgium. They have a single logo and share one website. The unique story of the Colonies with their exceptional landscapes, fascinating stories, rich heritage and stunning nature reserves is told as a whole. Together they are striving to become a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2018.