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Jacob Roggeveen was a Dutch explorer in the service of the West India Company. On 1 August 1721, he set sail from the Rede van Texel with three ships on a voyage of discovery to the Great South Land. On Easter Sunday, 5 April 1722, the expedition discovered Easter Island by accident, 3,700 kilometres off the coast of Chile.
In 1972, Easter Island sought to form a twinning relationship with Texel. But because Easter Island was officially part of Chile and due to the political unrest in Chile at the time, Texel declined the offer.
In 1990, Texel artist Niek Welboren devised the plan to honour the request of the inhabitants of Easter Island all this time later in his own way. He spent four months on the island in 1992, as a ‘painting delegate’ of Texel. The mysterious island with its massive statues made a huge impression on him and he created over eighty drawings during his time on the island.
Together with the government of Easter Island, Welboren organised for the best sculptor of Easter Island to visit Texel. Bene Aukara Tuki Pate’s travel and accommodation expenses were paid by Texel entrepreneurs, the municipality and TESO. He made a sculpture from a block of 6,000 kg tuff stone, symbolising the bond between the two islands.
‘De Dromer van Rapa Nui’ (The Dreamer of Rapa Nui) is exhibited at Eilandgalerij and faces Easter Island.
Click the link for more information about art and culture on Texel