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Marte Röling (6)

'Non scholae sed vitae' by Marte Röling

at the Harmonieplein of the Faculty of Arts

This artwork was presented on Friday 4 June 1999 to launch the celebration of the 385th anniversary of the university’s founding.

‘Non scholae sed vitae' is an important concept in the relationship between the university, its lecturers and its students.  'Non scholae sed vitae discimus', usually shortened to 'Non scholae sed vitae' means that students do not learn for the sake of the school (or university), but for life.  This motto can also be found above the doors to the Aula in the Academiegebouw.  The motto ‘Non scholae sed vitae’ can be seen on a five-metre sculpture that stands on a concrete plinth in the square of the Harmonie Complex in the centre of Groningen.  

The sculpture, which is the work of Marte Röling, is in the form of a pennant. The artist describes her work as follows: ‘The image carries itself and the text, which is more or less embedded in its form. In the centuries to come, this monument will be a symbol of a psychological battle rather than an armed conflict. The sculpture’s location, where town and gown come together, is very urban. ‘We don’t have many city squares in the Netherlands’, Röling explains, ‘but the Harmonieplein is definitely a good example. That is why I have tried to create a monument-like sculpture, as you can see from the plinth. My main aim was, of course, to create something beautiful that evokes an emotional response. Röling’s sculpture is made of toughened polyester in ‘blue, grey, and white hand-painted, airbrushed marble’. The concrete plinth is almost three metres high, and the sculpture almost five metres. It is approximately one metre wide.  

Seen through the gateway to the Harmonie
Seen through the gateway to the Harmonie
Seen from the Harmonieplein
Seen from the Harmonieplein
Last modified:27 June 2018 12.10 p.m.
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