The platform for Belgium's international community

Search form

menu menu
  • Daily & Weekly newsletters
  • Buy & download The Bulletin
  • Comment on our articles

Monolith appears in Belgian potato field

19:45 08/12/2020

Belgium has its very own monolith, located – appropriately – in a potato field in East Flanders. No one saw who put it there, naturally, but it probably appeared sometime last night.

It is the latest in a monolith craze sweeping the world, with the slender, tall, silver structures appearing in deserts, in forests and atop hillsides around the globe. They generally disappear again within a few days.

It all started in a Utah desert last month, when a triangular-shaped monolith nearly three metres tall was spotted by the state’s department of public safety during a helicopter flight over a remote canyon. Google Earth images soon appeared on Reddit, and the monolith took on a life of its own. A kind of pilgrimage began, with visitors using GPS co-ordinates to find it.

Since Stanley Kubrick’s legendary film 2001, monoliths have been seen as mysterious objects and associated with alien life forms. Since no one knew where the Utah monolith came from or how long it had been hidden away in a canyon enclave, it sparked the imagination.

But within a couple of weeks, a man shot video with his phone of four people taking the monolith down and hauling it away, telling him that they were concerned about so many visitors driving in and spoiling the protected natural area.

But not before a trend was started: A similar monolith appeared in a Romanian forest and another on the top of a California mountain. Both disappeared within a few days. Then the floodgates opened, with monoliths popping up everywhere – on the Isle of Wight, in a park in Manitoba, in a nature reserve in the Netherlands and in the ruins of a Spanish Church.

And now in a Flemish potato field. The field is located in Dendermonde on the eastern side of East Flanders. Like the other monoliths, no one knows who put it there, or how long it might last.

For their part, Utah’s department of public safety said in a statement that placing art installations on public land without consultation or permission is illegal “no matter what planet you’re from”.

Photo courtesy Radio 2

Written by Lisa Bradshaw

Comments

Frank Lee

Why things made of metal are called "monoliths" still beats me.

Dec 9, 2020 15:05