The Letters of Utrecht


NOS news June 2d, 2012

A poem for the future grows in the stones of the street in the center of the town of Utrecht, The Netherlands. One character per stone, one stone per week. Every Saturday a stone mason turns the next stone into the next Letter. In months words appear. With the years verses grow in the streets, extended by a different poet of Utrechts’ guild of poets every few years. Through the centuries the line of the poem will itself draw letters on the map of the changing city.

The poem continues for as long as there are Saturdays. Until the end of the future. For as long as someone is willing to contribute the next Letter as a gift to this town and its future citizens and to link a person or event with a Letter by bearing the costs of its creation. This requires 100 Euro per Letter, which includes 10 Euro for a good cause. A consecutive number will help the sponsor find his/her letter, and count the weeks since the beginning of the year 2000. Contribute your Letter!

Explanation of the Letters of Utrecht (video, in Dutch)

At the same time of the publication on the street the Letter appears on this website, with the name of the sponsor. The stone mason can engrave the name or initials of the sponsor in the side of the stone (invisible under the surface of the street).

The Letters of Utrecht were unveiled on June 2, 2012. The beginning of the poem of the Letters of Utrecht was predated to fictitiously start on New Year’s day of the year 2000. The first 648 characters were actually placed on May 30th and 31st, 2012. From June 2d, 2012 onwards the next character is hewn out of the next stone every Saturday.

More explanation.
Stichting Letters van Utrecht organizes the project, the fiscal authorities in the Netherlands mark it as a cultural organization for the general benefit (culturele ANBI). Gifts can be declared in a Dutch tax declaration.

Letter 1 is engraved in a stone from the mountain of the 10,000 Year Clock, thanks to the Long Now Foundation

The beginning of the Letters of Utrecht, after some rain