Share this project

Done

Share this project

Done
A photobook and film about the biggest bonfire rivalry in the world.
A photobook and film about the biggest bonfire rivalry in the world.
193 backers pledged $10,242 to help bring this project to life.

About

Vreugdevuur Scheveningen by Romke Hoogwaerts project video thumbnail
Replay with sound
Play with
sound

$10,242

193

Vreugdevuur Scheveningen is a deep dive into a working-class story of epic proportions, photographed and filmed by Romke Hoogwaerts. Every New Year’s Eve in Holland, two neighborhoods build rivaling bonfires on the beaches of the The Hague. These days they are the biggest in the world.

After the Second World War, The Hague, Holland, was a city of skirmishes every year over collections of discarded Christmas trees to burn on the night of the year's passing; often, the violence on the streets leading up to every New Year's Eve would get out of hand. With the blessings of local authorities, the violence slowly evolved into a battle between Scheveningen and Duindorp, two coastal neighborhoods separated by a harbor, to see who could build the biggest bonfire.

Romke Hoogwaerts' family is from Scheveningen, and he decided to make their bonfire story the subject of his first major photographic study. After two years of documentation, research, interviews and writing, his book and film are finally nearing completion. Read more about the story and photographs here.

About the book

Published by Gnomic Book, this 164 page book takes inspiration from photo essay books from the sixties. It is a soft cover book with 90 duotone plates. This will be Gnomic's 5th project, scheduled for release in September 2018.

pages from the latest mockup.
pages from the latest mockup.

The book includes two essays. The first is about the history of the Kerstbomenjacht ("Christmastreehunt"), accompanied by archival photographs dating back to the very beginning of the New Year's madness. Romke Hoogwaerts dug through city archives to find the finest photographs on the matter and even spent a week with Jos van Leeuwen, a legendary local press photographer with a story so fantastic (and archives so replete) that Romke has been developing an additional documentary to cover it.

The second essay in the book describes his initial experiences with the bonfires in detail and is complemented with a selection of outtakes from the book, as well as captions for the photos in the main sequence. Both of the essays are presented in English and Dutch. Read a little more about the book here.

About the film

For last year's fire, Romke came with a second camera in hand to gather footage of the event. That footage has shaped up to be a short documentary with a character of its own, studying the process of construction, all the emotion that gets put into it and the 'hardstyle' techno they play throughout the week. Watch an excerpt & trailer below, from the current rough cut:

Who is Romke Hoogwaerts?

Romke Hoogwaerts was born in Atlanta in 1990. His Dutch parents frequently moved for work, to Hong Kong, Italy, Spain, Singapore and Vietnam before Romke moved to New York City, where he received a degree in Visual & Critical Studies from SVA (2013). He has independently published several photography books, mostly for his former project, Mossless. For that project and for a variety of other publications, he has written about and interviewed hundreds of photographers. Vreugdevuur Scheveningen is his first major project as an independent photographer.

What are these rewards?

Besides the book and film, which you can read about above, we have a few other options for interested backers.

  • Postcard set

A set of four featured photographs from the book (pictures coming soon), on its own or with the book. Either way, the documentary film comes with the set.

  • 16x20" prints

For those who want to take their support to the next level, there are a few photographs available as signed 16x20" prints. Click here to see these options larger.

  • Gnomic Book bundles

We are offering bundles of Gnomic's other recent and forthcoming titles as well, including Jason Koxvold's Knives and Shane Rocheleau's YAMOTFABAATA (both pictured below). Read a conversation between Koxvold and Rocheleau about these projects on The Reservoir.

Thank you for your support!

Risks and challenges

Printing any book is a labor of love and requires skill, experience, and patience. Every printing process encounters some challenge - whether they be paper availability, technical difficulties, or customs delays. Through our previous projects we've built strong relationships with some of Europe's finest printers and are confident that we will be able to work through any problems to deliver a beautiful result.

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 10 or more About US$ 10

    Vreugdevuur Scheveningen: the film

    Unlock a download of the full-length film by Romke Hoogwaerts.

    (Note: all backers over $10 will receive the film)

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    21 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  2. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 25 or more About US$ 25

    Postcard set & film

    Get a set of four postcards of photographs from Vreugdevuur Scheveningen and a download code for the full-length documentary film.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    15 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  3. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 48 or more About US$ 48

    Vreugdevuur Scheveningen: the book

    Pre-order the book (retail price) and receive a download code for the documentary film as a Kickstarter bonus.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    116 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  4. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 58 or more About US$ 58

    Vreugdevuur Scheveningen: the whole set

    Pre-order the book, the postcard set and a download code for the film.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    17 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  5. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 85 or more About US$ 85

    Vreugdevuur Scheveningen: signed

    Pre-order the book, signed by Romke Hoogwaerts, and get the postcard set and a download code for the film.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 1 backer
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  6. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 88 or more About US$ 88

    Vreugdevuur Scheveningen + YAMOTFABAATA

    Vreugdevuur Scheveningen + YAMOTFABAATA by Shane Rocheleau, also published by Gnomic Book in 2018

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    4 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  7. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 88 or more About US$ 88

    Vreugdevuur Scheveningen (2X)

    Two copies of the book and a download code for the film.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    3 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  8. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 98 or more About US$ 98

    Vreugdevuur Scheveningen + KNIVES

    Vreugdevuur Scheveningen + KNIVES by Jason Koxvold, published by Gnomic Book in 2017

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    4 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  9. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 138 or more About US$ 138

    Vreugdevuur + YAMOTFABAATA + KNIVES

    Vreugdevuur Scheveningen + YAMOTFABAATA by Shane Rocheleau + KNIVES, by Jason Koxvold

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    1 backer
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  10. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 180 or more About US$ 180

    The Gnomic Collection, 2017-2018

    All of our standard editions, 2017 & 2018: Vreugdevuur Scheveningen + YAMOTFABAATA + KNIVES + No Ending Just Changing + Die Terroristen

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    1 backer
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  11. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 500 or more About US$ 500

    Vreugdevuur Scheveningen + 16x20" print

    Pre-order a signed copy of the book along with a signed print of your choice.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 0 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.

Funding period

- (28 days)