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Kunstwerk 10

Kunstwerk 10 - instructievideo

Kathrin Schlegel - Komen en Gaan


Linda Verkaaik - Zeearmen


Zoro Feigl - Boeien


Kunstwerk 10

Location Artwork: 
Koninklijke N.V. Texels Eigen Stoomboot Onderneming
Pontweg 1
1797 SN Den Hoorn
Number 6 (see map)

Dr. Theo Gerkema

Dr Theo Gerkema, physical oceanographer: ‘I study water movements in the Wadden Sea. We’ve known for a long time that the ebb and flow of the tides is due to the position of the moon and sun. But that certainly doesn’t mean we can accurately predict every current. For the wind too has a huge influence on the water flowing into and out of the Wadden Sea. That influence is greater than we long believed.’ 
‘The information I collect about the tides is also very interesting to our institute’s biologists. The ebb and flow also brings nutrients into the Wadden Sea, which keep the whole ecosystem going. And the fact that the Wadden Sea is such a dynamic environment is also mainly due to the tide!’

Sun, moon and wind combined make for dynamic mudflats

Physical oceanographer Dr Theo Gerkema measures water movements and silt transport in the Wadden Sea. ‘The tide tables already tell you when high or low tide will occur at a certain spot in so many years’ time. But this certainly doesn’t mean that water levels and currents are entirely predictable. What’s more: when we take measurements on the Wadden Sea with our research vessel Navicula, we’re actually only learning about that one specific moment, under those specific wind conditions. The next day, when the wind has changed, everything can look very different. This is why we also combine the measurements from the research vessel with calculations from a computer model. In this way I try to understand how a particular wind force and wind direction affects the currents.’

Sand, silt and nutrients
The tide is vital to everything that happens further up the mudflats. Huge volumes of water not only pass between the islands over the mudflats twice a day, but that water also carries along sand, silt and nutrients. These nutrients in turn enable algae to grow, and allow shellfish, fish and birds to find food there.’

‘We actually discovered only relatively recently how much influence the wind has on all of the water movements in the Wadden Sea. For example, fresh water comes regularly from the locks in the Afsluitdijk. How this fresh water is then distributed through the channels and over the mudflats is mainly determined by the wind.’
‘By working with the various artists in this project, I also started to look at the tide a little bit differently. They asked inspiring questions that for me – once again – emphasised how dynamic the mudflats are. It’s true, no two tides are the same!’ 

More information about Theo’s work can be found on the NIOZ website.

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Science Encounters Art

SEA Texel

Ruim 70 procent van onze aarde bestaat uit zee. Een onuitputtelijke bron van inspiratie. S.E.A brengt een ode aan de zee, door kunstwerken geïnspireerd op wetenschap op Texel te realiseren.

Contact informatie

Project SEA
Pontweg 19
1797 SN Den Hoorn, Texel