Google Earth as censored by the ever-artsy Dutch

Perhaps only the Dutch, with their celebrated talent for design, could jazz up the censoring of Google Earth.

As noted in Granta, Dutch artist Mishka Henner has unearthed the remarkable way in which Holland's government has censored Google Earth's satellite views to obscure sensitive sites such as military installations and government buildings.

Unlike other countries, which tend to blur, pixelate, or whitewash such areas, the Netherlands covers them with colorful abstractions that call to mind camouflage or contemporary graphic design.

Henner's book "Dutch Landscapes" juxtaposes images of these stylish obstructions with Google Earth photos of the similarly arresting interventions the Dutch have made into the landscape itself to keep their country above water (dikes, dunes, drainage networks, and the like).

Flipping through the book is interesting. And as for the censored images (some of which you'll see in this gallery), we commend the land of Rembrandt and Mondrian for its unflagging attention to aesthetics. Who would've thought we'd be tempted to make a screensaver or desktop background out of a censored Google Earth image?

In this image: An unknown site -- Noordwijkaan Zee, South Holland.
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Photo by: Mishka Henner/Google Earth / Caption by:

Logistic division

Logistic Division Rhenen -- Remmerden, Utrecht.
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Photo by: Mishka Henner/Google Earth / Caption by:

Army barracks

Prins Maurits Army Barracks -- Ede, Gelderland.
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Photo by: Mishka Henner/Google Earth / Caption by:

Radar installation

Air Force Radar Installation -- Wier, Friesland.
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Photo by: Mishka Henner/Google Earth / Caption by:

Palace in The Hague

A far-out building by starchitect Rem Koolhaas? Nope, it's the Noordeinde Palace in The Hague, South Holland.
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Photo by: Mishka Henner/Google Earth / Caption by:

Waterways

Wormerland, North Holland.

In his book, artist Mishka Henner juxtaposes the censored images with shots of the centuries-old system Holland has built to keep the below-sea-level country from flooding. This is one of those images, showing a network of waterways.
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Photo by: Mishka Henner/Google Earth / Caption by:

Control station

Air Operations Control Station -- Nieuw-Milligen, Gelderland.
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Photo by: Mishka Henner/Google Earth / Caption by:

NATO annex

NATO Storage Annex -- Coevorden, Drenthe.
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Photo by: Mishka Henner/Google Earth / Caption by:
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