Rubber rhinoceros by Tom Claassen


Tom Claassen made this rubber rhinoceros in 2004 and put it in a sluice in Amsterdam’s newest neighbourhood, IJburg (reclaimed in true Dutch fashion from the water—the neighbourhood that is, not the rhino). Several questions spring to mind, such as “wha?” and “brrr?” and I wish I had thought of it. provides some answers (English), such as “first public art in the neighbourhood” and “visibility depends on the water level.”

Photo: Tom Claassen. Here’s what IJburg looked like in 2004 (Wikipedia). Via Trendbeheer (Dutch).


  1. jon says:

    Traffic lights. Are they part of the canal or part of the installation?

  2. Branko Collin says:

    I believe the traffic light, the ladder and the midget with the back-pack are left-overs of a performance of Waiting for Godot that was staged there. Unless it wasn’t, in which I don’t think they’ve got anything to do with The Beast.

  3. Astrid says:

    isn’t the midget with the back-pack just a little curious girl?

  4. Astrid says:

    and the longer I look the more questions come to mind like: kids jumping on the rubber rhino, does that ever happen? please, tell me! I really need to know =)

  5. Branko Collin says:

    My question is: why hasn’t nobody mentioned to me that this animal does in fact most look like a hippopotamus, not a rhinoceros. I always get them mixed up, and it doesn’t help if the maker calls his objet d’art ‘Rhino.’

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