About the work
In this painting of the Blijdorp metro station in Rotterdam, Bert has depicted two men passing a beggar. Typical for this time is that they are both apparently only interested in their mobile phone and have no eye for the Other; the person on the floor of the subway station.
Bert is often inspired in his paintings by the philosophy of Emmanuel Levinas (1906-1995). According to Levinas, the fellow man is not just another person, but appears as a strange other. To emphasize the transcendent otherness of the other, he repeatedly deliberately capitalizes the Other. The Other is not an object that I can make use of. According to Levinas, the Other - he speaks of 'the face of the Other' - appears as an inaccessible creature that appeals to my responsibility.
Blijdorp metro station, pictured here, opened on August 16, 2010. It is a metro station on metro line E of RandstadRail and Rotterdam metro. The station is located in the Rotterdam Blijdorp district of the same name, on the Statenweg. It is located at a depth of 18 meters below street level of the Statenweg, making it the deepest metro station in Rotterdam. The reflection in the ceiling in the painting emphasizes this depth even more.
Maarten Struijs's station design was awarded the Rotterdam Architecture Prize in 2011. Architect Maarten Struijs designed all stations for RandstadRail in Rotterdam. For Blijdorp station, he chose materials such as polished natural stone and enamelled sheet steel.
The traveler can reach the platforms via the regular stairs, the escalator and the elevator. Because the platform is so deep, it takes three escalators to get down or up.