A round up of the best stories about the Netherlands and all things Dutch from leading international publications



Dutch city uses penis fountain to rebel against art project

Dutch city uses penis fountain to rebel against art project

When the Dutch city of Leeuwarden commissioned 11 fountains by modern artists to celebrate being made European capital of culture 2018, it probably didn’t expect such stiff opposition. Internationally renowned sculptors – including the British artists Cornelia Parker and Lucy Orta – each designed a fountain for one of 11 cities in the province of Friesland. For the city of Workum, Parker took her inspiration from a pair of lions on a 17th-century coat of arms, designing two huge replicas, with water spouting from their claws.  More >



Even the smallest of Dutch towns are becoming smart

Even the smallest of Dutch towns are becoming smart

An increasing number of Dutch towns and cities use street sensors and big data to tackle societal problems. From smart lighting to artificial intelligence that spots violent behaviour in surveillance footage, smart technology is booming in the Netherlands  More >


The Dutch city with a constantly changing name

The Dutch city with a constantly changing name

Known as Leeuwarden, Ljouwert and Liwwadden, along with hundreds of variants over the centuries, 2018’s European Capital of Culture is the world’s undisputed capital of place names.  More >






How is the Dutch king like a cop?

How is the Dutch king like a cop?

Insulting a king used to be dangerous business, but in the Netherlands, it could soon be the legal equivalent of trash-talking an ambulance driver. Under Dutch law, insulting the monarch is a crime — though it is rarely prosecuted — punishable by up to five years in prison.  More >




Urk fishermen prepare for choppy Brexit waters

Urk fishermen prepare for choppy Brexit waters

The fishermen of Urk know that Brexit is going to hurt, but they aren’t going to accept the pain without a fight. The Dutch coastal town is built on fish. Until 1939, and the construction of a dyke to the mainland, it was an island. Its inhabitants were so isolated from the rest of the country that in winter the sick had to be transported across the ice on sledges to reach the nearest hospital.  More >



Thomas Eyck, impresario of design

Thomas Eyck, impresario of design

Thomas Eyck’s private showroom is in a restored 18th-century barn next to a potato field on the outskirts of this Frisian village. Although the setting is calm, the design producer is often on the go, popping out of his seat and grabbing objects to illuminate his points to a visitor.  More >





The new Dutch disease is white nationalism

The new Dutch disease is white nationalism

An upstart far-right party in the Netherlands threatens to entrench xenophobia in one of Europe’s most progressive countries. As voters in the Netherlands gear up for local elections, the old adage that all politics are local is being turned on its head.  More >