I LOVE BANDA at the National Maritime Museum in Amsterdam

I Love Banda sheds light on the intertwined history of the Netherlands and the Banda Islands.

“By illuminating the Banda Islands from a contemporary and human perspective, I have tried to offer an alternative to the common and one-sided image of Banda as a heritage paradise.”  Isabelle Boon about her project I Love Banda

The Scheepvaartmuseum and documentary photographer Isabelle Boon will open the exhibition I Love Banda opens on 6th May with an online program: a project about the influence of a colonial past on the Banda archipelago today. From the perspective of six young people, a layered story unfolds about heritage, identity, community spirit and being young.

This year it will be 400 years ago that Jan Pieterszoon Coen finally conquered the Banda Islands on behalf of the VOC, the Dutch East India Company,  in order to obtain a monopoly in the trade on nutmeg and mace. In addition, the islands were virtually depopulated because people fled, were murdered, starved or enslaved. The VOC populated the archipelago with enslaved workers who were put to work on plantations. Banda became the first slavery-based colony under Dutch rule. With I Love Banda, Isabelle Boon investigates how the current generation of Bandanese young people view their history. What significance does the ubiquitous colonial heritage have for them? And how do they see their future and that of the islands?

I Love Banda can be seen in the museum until 7th November, 2021.

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