While searching for artworks in Rotterdam I found these alienated garbage bins in The Hague. Artworks by the Japanese artist Yumiko Yoneda.
Things become more interesting when they're made useless. Things that refuse to act normally and don't blend into the background.
What would Heidegger say about this: Zuhandenheit or Vorhandenheit? An object that looks ready-to-hand at first sight but then forces you into a present-at-hand mood?
Strange that there are no more pictures on the Internet. One would expect that more people were intrigued. Or are the bins too perfectly camouflaged as utility objects? And what happened to the second garbage bin?
Yesterday I went looking for the garbage bin in it's natural habitat in the Westbroekpark in The Hague. There are nice roses and many bronze sculptures. And many garbage bins. But I couldn't find this specific one.
And I noticed that the design of the bins has changed since. There are new ones and this shape is not in use anymore. The bin has lost its camouflage but it still evaded detection.
I asked several people if they knew about the modified garbage bin. I asked the owner of the local teahouse. I asked one of the gardeners. No one knew of its existence. Maybe it's just a dream the city is dreaming.
Finally I understood what the problem was ... I had been looking in the wrong park. The bin stands in the Zuiderpark not in the Westbroekpark. Knowing about the sculpture collection in the Westbroekpark, I had automatically assumed that the bronze bin must belong there.