Faces in the crowd at the Keti Koti Festival in Amsterdam, 2013.

With the abolition of slavery in 1863, the Surinamese people were finally emancipated from slavery in the Netherlands Antilles (formerly Dutch West Indies) and in Suriname. Today the people from these communities provide a key aspect of the colour and personality of Amsterdam, and are an integral ingredient in the city’s melting pot. As for the festival, Keti Koti, which is a phrase from Suriname meaning ‘Broken Chains’, is a free celebration of liberty, equality and solidarity. Look out for the Bigi Spikri parade, followed by a remembrance ceremony. Later in the afternoon, festivities truly take off with music, spoken word, film and dance performances. 


Please click on any image to view full size or start a slide-show:

This post was inspired by Becky B’s January Squares Challenge: UP. and seems highly appropriate right now when if anyone gets dressed up, they have nowhere to go!

But rediscovering these pictures has reminded me of all the fun and vitality that will return to our lives in the (hopefully) not too distant future.


Lisa Coleman · 10 January 2021 at 18:50

Great captures. I love the motion of the smoke from the pipe. Outstanding! 🙂 Been missing your for Bird Weekly! 🙂

    Helen Bushe · 13 January 2021 at 13:15

    Thanks Lisa. I have so many old files to play around with. I have prepared a couple of posts for Bird Weekly Challenge but been too late to publish. I’ll post them retrospectively though.

      Lisa Coleman · 14 January 2021 at 03:28

      That sounds just wonderful. We have certainly missed you! 🙂

amoralegria · 8 January 2021 at 21:06

These are beautiful! When is this festival? I’ve been to Amsterdam twice in the last three years and would love to see this festival next time!

    Helen Bushe · 9 January 2021 at 09:42

    It’s planned for 1st July 2021. Info on their website. Well worth going to this. I hope you get there sometime.

Hammad Rais · 8 January 2021 at 20:29

The smile on their faces is certainly heartwarming 🙂

    Helen Bushe · 9 January 2021 at 09:43

    It was a wonderful day! Thank you for visiting my blog.

restlessjo · 7 January 2021 at 21:24

Fabulous portraits, Helen 🙂 🙂

    Helen Bushe · 9 January 2021 at 09:47

    Thanks Jo. It’s a day I’ll never forget. We’d no idea it was on until we found ourselves welcomed into the middle of it

margaret21 · 7 January 2021 at 21:17

Marvellous portraits!

Anabel @ The Glasgow Gallivanter · 7 January 2021 at 17:52

An excellent collection of portraits.

BeckyB · 7 January 2021 at 08:57

oh Helen these portraits are wonderful

    Helen Bushe · 7 January 2021 at 10:03

    Thank you, Becky. I’ve plenty more in my Treasure Chest of files from past trips.

Prior... · 7 January 2021 at 02:06

Such a beautiful woman

I'm always pleased to read comments.....

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