Dragonfly Stamps

2005 Netherlands, Century of Natuurmonumenten

Date of Issue:
22 March 2005
Design agency "Airplant of Amsterdam"
36 x 25 mm
14 x 12.5
Printing Process:
Miniature Sheetlet with 4 designs
Joh Enschede Security Print
Face V.
39 c
Blue Tailed Damselfly (Ischnura elegans)

The Stamp and the Miniature Sheetlets

The stamp comes from 8 designs issue, each 4 available in one Miniature Sheetlet only. 

To mark the 100th anniversary of Vereniging Natuurmonumenten (the Dutch Society for the Preservation of Nature), on 22 March 2005 TPG Post is issuing two stamp sheetlets from its "Nature in the Netherlands" series. The popular series has also included sheetlets on the Dutch Shallows (2003) and the Veluwe (2004). In 2003, the Dutch Shallows stamps were voted the finest  stamps of the year by Collect readers. The Veluwe stamps are in with a good chance for 2004, which bodes well for the new sheetlets. The new stamp sheetlets each comprise four gummed stamps. The sheetlet of four stamps at 39 euro cents each features the Naardermeer lake. The  sheetlet of four Priority stamps (for within Europe) at 65 euro cents each depicts the heathland of the Brunssumm erheide. The Naardermeer area is the very first nature reserve to be purchased by Natuurmonumenten. 
These wetlands form a  natural and interesting counterpart to the Brunssummerheide; the wet and marshy Naardermeer reserve contrasting starkly with the dry and sandy heathlands.

The stamp sheetlets were designed to reflect the special character of the two areas. A cross section was made of the landscape to give the images an extra dimension, allowing flora and fauna under and on the water to be shown as well as animals in the air and on the ground. The Naardermeer sheetlet shows a pike, a water lily, a cormorant and a blue tailed damselfly. Images of a hawfinch, a common blue butterfly, a Schonebeeker sheep and a sand lizard can be found on the Brussummerheide sheetlet.

The designers Airplant of Amsterdam felt it important not to place too much emphasis on specific flora or fauna. The animals and plants have consciously been depicted as true to nature as possible. The principal aim was to  successfully reflect the unique character of the two nature reserves.

Airplant: "The first associations that came to mind during our trip to the Naardermeer were romanticism, the 19th century and Jugendstil. We wanted to depict the areas on the stamp sheetlets by using the lines on the Naardermeer sheetlet to refer to air and water streams and the dotted lines on the Brunssummerheide sheetlet to represent scents and drifting sand".

The stamp design incorporates existing photo material with graphical colour elements, allowing the designers to put their own stamp on the photos and give them a new character.

Design agency Airplant of Amsterdam is formed by Rogerio Lira, Gabrielle  Marks and Aldje van Meer. They studied respectively at the Sandberg Institute, the Gerrit Rietveld Academy, the Utrecht School of the Arts (HKU) and Media-GN.  Airplant regularly works together with artists, musicians, filmmakers and theatre makers. Airplant takes what it sees as the expressive side of digital media and forges a link between this and the physical environment. The designers also take the liberty of using unorthodox processes and seek a balance between the instrumental and communicative on the one hand and the experimental and groundbreaking on the other.

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