The Kröller-Müller Museum in Otterlo, the Netherlands, joins the LRE Foundation and its international network made of places, people and stories that keep the memory of WWII alive.
The Kröller-Müller Museum is famous for its impressive collection of Van Gogh paintings, together with other outstanding pieces of art by Claude Monet, Georges Seurat, Pablo Picasso and Piet Mondrian, among others. Besides its excellent art collection, the museum also has a fascinating war history. At the beginning of the Second World War, a bomb shelter was constructed in a sand dune to preserve the museum’s valuable collection. Later on, in the final year of the war, the building served as an emergency hospital for the Red Cross. On 15 April 1945, the museum was finally liberated by the Canadians, who also helped reinstate the art so the collection could be opened to the public on 6 October 1945.
Jurriaan de Mol, Director of the LRE Foundation in the Netherlands: “In a region where remembrance tourism plays an important role, visitors of the Liberation Route Europe will appreciate the combination of art, culture and history. The collaboration with the Kröller-Müller Museum is, therefore, a great addition to what the LRE Foundation’s network currently offers“.
Check out the Kröller-Müller Museum on Liberation Route Europe.
The project HistoryTreks – Promoting European Citizenship and Sustainability along the Liberation Route Europe, organized by the LRE Foundation, has received a grant from the Erasmus+ program.
Through Erasmus+, the European Union supports the educational, professional, and personal development of participants in the fields of education, training, youth and sport in Europe and beyond. The program offers people of all ages the opportunity to gain knowledge and experience at home or abroad. This ambition perfectly matches the LRE Foundation’s mission and commitment to promoting innovative active remembrance and memory transmission projects targeting the younger generations.
The Erasmus+ grant will allow the Foundation’s team to organize an additional project as part of the LRE Youth Programme array. The project will consist of a 5-day mobility program in Germany and the Netherlands, during which 50 students (25 from Germany and 25 from the Netherlands) will be enabled to learn each other’s perspectives on the Second World War and remembrance.
Students will hike parts of the Liberation Route Europe during the five days to experience a new and sustainable way of active remembrance. Different museums, historical sites and cemeteries will be visited, and time for discussions and reflections will be allocated throughout the program.
The project aims to establish further connections between the two countries and create life-long bonds between the German and Dutch students.
The LRE Foundation is happy to announce that, from 1 July 2021, it has members in eleven countries of Europe. The signature of a membership agreement with Pass Partout – a tourism marketing organisation based in Thessaloniki, Greece – marks a step further in the inclusion of Southern Europe in the Foundation’s activities.
Pass Partout works closely with the region of Central Macedonia, in the north of Greece, and creates remembrance tourism campaigns that promote the region’s contemporary history. In World War II, Central Macedonia was occupied between 1941 and 1944, with major suffering for the population. The memory of the Holocaust is particularly relevant in Thessaloniki, a city with a large Jewish presence and history.
Thanks to this cooperation, the LRE Foundation will promote and highlight the WWII history and sites of the Central Macedonia region and the remembrance tourism offer in the region.
“We are delighted and honoured to be the first Greek member of a certified network which presents and promotes the war museums, military cemeteries, battlefields and memorial sites”, says Sofia Bournatzi, owner of Pass Partout. “In Central Macedonia, Greece, the memorials tell stories from the Greek War of Independence in 1821 until the country’s liberation in 1944. In the land of Aristotle and Alexander the Great, modern history is equally significant. We look forward to sharing these stories with the LRE Foundation audience by being active members of an organisation that works to preserve our heritage.”
“Expanding the organisation to more countries of Europe is a long-term goal for the LRE Foundation”, says Rémi Praud, Managing Director of the LRE Foundation. “Southern, Central and Eastern Europe are a priority. We are pleased to add Greece to the LRE Foundation’s map of WWII remembrance and work with Pass Partout to promote the sites in Central Macedonia. We hope this is a first step to further expand our network in Greece.”