This site-specific tapestry diptych by Juliacks developed for the Spinhuis (aka Huygens Institute for the History of the Netherlands) is part of great narrative of Transversal Scepters, a trans-media fiction about the history and future of Justice in the Netherlands and the United States.
In Juliacks’ narrative, the physical location of the Spinhuis (Oudezijds Achterburgwal 185, Amsterdam) has become a character: Donna Daantje Doina. She faces themes of control, inequality, and (in)justice throughout the ages. It drives her to self-immolation.
The tapestry on the left shows the transformations that this spot on the Oudezijds Voorburgwal has undergone in the course of history: from an open marshy area where the fresh water of the Amstel and the salty water of the IJ flowed together, to a place of seclusion (the convent of St. Ursula), detention and labor (the Spinhuis), the headquarters of the Amsterdam police and occupation (by Nazi Germany).
Today it is a place for research on Dutch history and the story comes together as the tapestry is hung on a historical wall that saw much of these developments.
The right-hand tapestry shows the future of this place, in which Doina Daantje Donna rises from time, becoming a healer of justice.
Curated by Suzanne Sanders, this project was produced by TAAK with thanks to Yvonne Dubbers, Prof. Dr. Lex Heerma van Voss, Prof. Dr. Jelle van Lottum, Prof. Dr. Judith Brouwer, and the technical team at the Huygens ING. The tapestries were woven at the Textile Lab in Tilburg at the Textile Museum.