The Barbarian (Kalkovens/Schilkampen Sneek)
Bij de Kalkovens Sneek -plan route

In gratitude for its good relations with Sneek, the zipper factory YKK donated a work of art to the former municipality of Sneek in 2000. The good relationship had already led to the establishment of an official sister-city relationship between Sneek and Kurobe, Japan, the birthplace of YKK, back in 1970. The official handover of the Barbarian took place on Wednesday, April 19, 2000, in the middle of the Japanese week then being held in Sneek on the occasion of the national commemorative activities surrounding four centuries of (trade) contacts between the Netherlands and Japan. 'The Barbarian' was unveiled by YKK chief SeijroNishizaki, who had been appointed Knight of the Order of Orange-Nassau the same morning. The work of art stands on the Kalkovens, between Oppenhuizerweg and Houkesloot Boulevard. It was made by the Frisian artist Jan B. Woudstra, who lives in Japan, and who used a Japanese tree for this purpose. The name of the artwork refers to how the Japanese saw the Dutch sailors, when they were the first - and for a long time the only ones - to gain access to Japanese society on April 16, 1600; as blond and red-haired barbarians.Nishizaki spoke at the presentation of the artwork about the symbolism of a tree with roots and branches. The roots indicate that YKK is firmly rooted in Fryslan. From there, the company has spread its branches throughout Europe; from a company with 20 employees in Sneek to branches throughout Europe with 3,000 employees.