The little match girl

in collaboration with Company New Heroes, Studio Aldo Brinkhoff and Juf op Straat.

The Little Match Girl is a well-known fairy tale, about a girl selling matchsticks in the freezing cold. But nobody notices her. Everyone walks past her. The girl dies of hunger and the cold.

Together with 1000 primary school students from Amsterdam we are reading this fairytale and noticing the girl. Did you know that 1 in 5 kids in Amsterdam grows up in poverty? Even though the Netherlands is one of the richest countries in the world. In this education project we pay attention to this subject via the modernized fairy tale of The Little Match Girl.

24.01.2022 - THE ARTWORK
After having illuminated the city for 53 days, the lights are now off. Every evening 'Meisje met het Zwavelstokje' drew many visitors to the Overloopplantsoen. On this page you can read all the information about the artwork. To all partners, visitors and children: thank you!

29.12.2021 - RECAP
Want to learn about the artwork in just 30 seconds? Take a look at the video on our Instagram channel!

21.12.2021 - CANDLE MOMENT
On the darkest day of the year we light a candle. By putting it in front of our window, we make a statement that no child should be left in the dark.

The education project ends with a cruise past all the artworks. Students get to take one parent with them. They begin at the location of the artwork Girl With The Matchsticks. The kids can search for their sticker on the artwork. On board the students will guide all the artwork and they receive a drawing book. All artworks of this year are described in here and on the black pages they can doodle with fluor pens.

02.12.2021 - EDITION #10 HAS STARTED
Edition #10 of Amsterdam Light Festival has begun! Despite the restrictions the 23 light artworks will be on for the next 53 days. View the artwork in real life, with one of our cruise or walk experiences!

Construction of the artwork has started! Artist Aldo Brinkhoff is installing the work together with (light) technicians at the spot where the artwork will be on show for 53 days.

Workshop 2 is almost done and almost all the students in Amsterdam have designed their stickers. In the meantime, Aldo is busy putting all the stickers on the artwork!

15.11.21 - WORKSHOP III
The third workshops will start this week. In workshop 3 Jorie, from Juf op Straat, explains everything about Amsterdam Light Festival. She tells about the origins of the festival, the route this year and she prepares the children for the guide during the visit to the festival. During the workshop, the children make mind maps. They write and draw what they find important and interesting about this lesson.

04.11.21 - IN THE MEDIA
During the workshop at the 'Vogelnest' school a photographer of the Telegraaf popped by. The children made it to the cover of the Amsterdam section of the newspaper!

Je ziet de kinderen met hun stickers en een kort onderschrift over het project en kunstenaar Aldo Brinkhoff.

01.11.21 - WORKSHOP II
This week the second workshop kicked off. The students learned about activism, protest and how to let your voice be heard, from artist Aldo Brinkhoff. Linked to the social problem child poverty, the pupils will make a sticker: what do you want to do about the issue? The stickers will be placed on the light artwork that can be seen at the festival. Check out how it all went below:

25.10.2021 - WORKSHOP I
Today the first workshops have started. In workshop I the ritual takes place. Artists and theater teachers from Company New Heroes will recite the fairy tale ‘The Little Match Girl’. It’s very quiet. Students are excited to light a match. Each class sympathises with the girl in the story.

Then the conversation about child poverty starts. What do you think of the story? Is it a fair story? What does the girl look like? We let the children close their eyes. What does the girl look like? The kids draw their version of the girl. The girl from the story looks different in every drawing.

At the end of the workshop the candles are made where students illustrate the girl with wax. They can place the candle in front of their window on the 21st of December - the longest night of the year, when we make a statement against child poverty. Just like the girl from the artwork, we won’t let any child stand in the dark.

The subject touches deeply...
Together with Juf op Straat we delve further into the subject of child poverty. The clip of SIRE is played and leaves a great impression on the kids. Some quotes overheard during the workshop are:

“Sometimes your stomache hurts and you're feeling nauseous. When you talk about, you feel relieved and you feel better socially.”

“It is important to talk about it. You have to be able to trust your classmates.”

The campaign has started, watch the trailer below. Stay up to day by checking this page, visit the website and keep up via social media with the hashtags #doemeemethetritueel and #meisjemetdezwavelstokjes hashtags.

On October 5 we have done a workshop try-our with group 7 of the Boekmanschool. You could have heard a pin drop when Emily of Company New Heroes read the fairtytale to the students. The conversation about child poverty was interesting; many kids seemed to be surprised that so many children grow up poor. At the end of the workshop, the students made a candle which they will place in front of the window, to make sure no child is left in the dark.

In the second workshop artist Aldo Brinkhoff took over. He teached the kids about activism. Activism = emotion! As a kid you have a voice and we will make it heard. The stickers of the try-out group came out so good that they will be part of the artwork. We have learnt a lot from the try-out and after the autumn holiday we will kick-off with the 'real' workshops!

Try-out Boekmanschool. Kinderen maken een kaars en luisteren aandachtig.

02.09.2021 - THE PROJECT
Together with artist Aldo Brinkhoff around 1.000 primary school children from Amsterdam will create proteststickers that will be attached to the light installation. With the ritual, the visuals and sketches of the kids we will seek attention for the, often invisible issue, of child poverty.


Project partners:

Logo Stichting Nieuwe Helden  Logo Juf op Straat Logo Studio Aldo Brinkhoff   SKC logo