Design for the exhibition Vrouwen in verzet (Women in the Resistance) at the North Holland Archives in Haarlem.
The Noord-Hollands Archief revisits the subject of the role of women in the resistance against Nazi Occupation in the period around World War II. A hitherto neglected subject, Vrouwen in Verzet sets the record straight regarding the vital role that women played, at great risk to their own lives; a role which often went unrecognized after the war. As “resistance” has slowly come to be redefined —from almost exclusively acts of armed resistance, a mostly masculine province, to a broader spectrum of dangerous exploits— more women have taken their place in the pantheon of the brave and humanitarian.
In a small side chapel in the Janskerk (Church of John) in Haarlem we (Content creator Studio Louter and Todd van Hulzen) created a dense but cohesive exposition of stories and items from the lives of several resistance fighters. On the vault of the space the photographed portraits of many of these fascinating women have been set in a printed grid. As an unconventional stroke (by archival standards) and after much research, many of the portraits were expertly colorized. This professional colorization creates a remarkable feeling of immediacy, closing to much extent the time gap that we feel when viewing black and white photographs. Each showcase is themed with an aspect of resistance work and it’s consequences, and each is accompanied by an audio explanation.