PIONÉR – our story

Exhibition at the Central Library until 31.1.17. Stories about people from Denmark and abroad who, along varying paths, have arrived in Esbjerg.

The very personal accounts cover stories of people who have arrived in Esbjerg since the town began growing from 1868.

PIONÉR – our story poses the question how and why each individual has arrived in Esbjerg, which communities make them feel anchored and which objects represent this anchoring.

When the exhibition closes, the many stories can still be found at the museum’s website.

Esbjerg as a Pioneer town
Esbjerg grew as a town because people moved in and settled down. That was never the intention when it was decided to build the harbour in 1868. It just happened. That is why Esbjerg is often described as a pioneer town.

In PIONÉR – our story the museum focusses on the question of why people have moved here throughout time, how they have experienced their encounter with Esbjerg, and especially about what specific objects mean to us when we enter new territory.

Contemporary parallels
We often connect the pioneer spirit with the urge to be first with new discoveries or business areas but the word was connected with Esbjerg’s first citizens simply because they were first, when the town arose. 

They were ordinary people who for instance sought work at the harbour building works or just saw opportunities to settle and establish a business.
What they had in common was that they most often sought to improve their lives in some way.
PIONÉR – our story uses a series of personal portraits to focus on common human experiences of uprooting and settling in a new place.

The exhibition tells both the very personal stories but it also places them in a social and historical perspective.
The exhibition reflects the human aspects of geographical mobility and its meaning for Esbjerg – before and now.

Top pictures: Thuc with a picture taken by the captain on the ship Anna Mærsk who rescued 55 Vietnamese refugees. (Esbjerg Fotoklub).

Nguyen with the jacket, her mum bought for her (photo: Esbjerg Fotoklub)

Drawing of Chresten. Lisbeth K. Nordberg

Haile brought nothing with him to Esbjerg (photo: Esbjerg Fotoklub)