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Amsterdam removed a popular Selfie backdrop

December 3, 2018

The iconic lettering "I amsterdam" in front of the Rijksmuseum in the capital of the Netherlands was perfect for tourists: Here they posed for selfies, took a break or met. Now the giant letters are gone!

Amsterdam  Rijksmuseum
Image: picture-alliance/dpa/E. Leanza

The large lettering "I amsterdam" in front of the Rijksmuseum in the Dutch capital, popular with tourists as a photo motif, have been removed on Monday (December 3). The Amsterdam newspaper "Het Parool" reported that a decision of the local council at the request of the GroenLinks party had thus been implemented.

Amsterdam  Rijksmuseum
Iconic sign banned from Museumplein in AmsterdamImage: picture-alliance/dpa/T. Linkel

"Exaggerated individualism" or successful city marketing?

The Greens had complained that the red and white letters in front of the world-famous museum were an expression of "exaggerated individualism". Despite fierce criticism, however, the city parliament found a majority in favour of dismantling the letters, which were up to two metres high.

Meet a local: Amsterdam

However, the slogan "I amsterdam" remains the official motto of tourism advertising, explained a spokeswoman for Amsterdam Marketing. "The letters stand for the open and tolerant character of Amsterdam".

After ten years of having countless visitors photographed standing, lying or sitting on the letters, they now need to be thoroughly renovated, the spokeswoman said. Afterwards, they will be placed alternately in different locations in the city. A smaller version of the lettering can be found at Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport.

is/ks (dpa, dutchamsterdam.nl)