The Elfstedentocht is a rarity, since 1909 it has been held 15 times. With the consequences of climate change, how many more cool winters will douse a skater’s feverish optimism? Friesland needed a new way to link its 11 cities. So, as part of their bid to become the Capital of Culture 2018, 11 acclaimed artists were comissioned to create 11 distinctive fountains. “The project was primarily conceived as a new, sustainable way to link the 11 cities where once the 11 Cities’ Skating Tour fulfilled this role,” says Claudia Woolgar, creative producer of the Leeuwarden-Friesland European Capital of Culture 2018. Sustainability and the environment are both concepts embraced by the 11Fountains artists.