Dear Mr. Welles

On the evening of October 30, 1938 listeners across the United Stated were presented with an unexpected account of a meteor hitting the New Jersey countryside. While hearing loud sirens in the background, the radio broadcast included descriptions of terrifying creatures, war machines and dense clouds of poisonous gas heading towards New York City. Some listeners were in shock by the approaching threat, while others fled their homes or called the police. This broadcast was not a news report, but Orson Welles’ classic production, “The War of the Worlds.”

By visualizing letters sent to Welles after the broadcast and recreating experiences of listeners who believed the attack was real, this project investigates if the wave of mass hysteria as The New York Times reported was really true. The work emphasizes how the broadcast became a significant scandal, showing the power of radio and the vulnerability of the country in times of crisis. Agterberg traces the origins of “fake news” back to Welles’ show.

Artist Bios

  • Bebe Blanco Agterberg

    Bebe Blanco Agterberg is a visual storyteller based in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. She examines history and the reliability of the image in the post-truth era, which forms a grey area where fact and fiction live close to each other. This is the area where Agterberg positions herself.

    The projects she makes explore the relationship between politics, media and citizens. How these three opponents feed each other, need each other, but also exist in a constant power struggle.

    Her visual language is based on what she sees in the media and she is specifically interested in that what has been manipulated. Agterberg uses artificial light in order to give a cinematic feeling to the work, which is based on emotions that tries to lure its audience into believing what is created in front of them. In her work she takes on the role of a director that investigates what truth means in modern times.

    Agterberg graduated with honors from The Royal Academy of Arts, The Hague and is a member of Futures, a Europe based photography platform that brings together the resources and talents of 14 cultural institutions. She also works as an image editor for the Dutch journalistic platform; De Correspondent.

    Besides working on personal projects, Bebe is available for commissioned assignments.


  • Melkweg Expo

    Melkweg Expo

    Melkweg Expo is an exhibition space for contemporary photography and a platform for emerging artists, located in the heart of Amsterdam. With a focus on photography that explores identity, society and pop culture. Characterized by a distinctly playful and accessible approach, Melkweg Expo seeks to unveil high quality art – art that is innovative, engaging and inclusive.

    Melkweg Expo’s main goal is to nurture and promote emerging talent and present them to a broad audience – from admirers of art, photography addicts, art students and self-taught artists, to the casual passers-by of the venue’s central location and music lovers surfacing from the crowd of a Melkweg concert. Melkweg Expo is part of Melkweg.

    Melkweg stands for pop culture in the most broad of senses. Each year, hundreds of concerts, club nights, films and music films, theatre performances, expositions and multidisciplinary events together attract almost 540,000 visitors.

    The venue is located in the only surviving factory building on the Amsterdam canal ring, a former sugar and, later, milk factory.

    In the Melkweg, established names can be seen alongside new talent and emerging styles get the chance to reach a broader audience. The diversity of its programming and visitors have for years made the Melkweg a unique place.

  • Photoville


    Founded in 2011 in Brooklyn, NY, Photoville was built on the principles of addressing cultural equity and inclusion, which we are always striving for, by ensuring that the artists we exhibit are diverse in gender, class, and race.

    In pursuit of its mission, Photoville produces an annual, city-wide open air photography festival in New York City, a wide range of free educational community initiatives, and a nationwide program of public art exhibitions.

    By activating public spaces, amplifying visual storytellers, and creating unique and highly innovative exhibition and programming environments, we join the cause of nurturing a new lens of representation.

    Through creative partnerships with festivals, city agencies, and other nonprofit organizations, Photoville offers visual storytellers, educators, and students financial support, mentorship, and promotional & production resources, on a range of exhibition opportunities.

    For more information about Photoville visit,

  • Dutch Culture USA

    Dutch Culture USA

    Dutch arts, culture, and shared cultural heritage are represented in the U.S. through the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Washington, DC, and the Consulates General of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Atlanta, Chicago, Miami, New York, and San Francisco. The headquarters for cultural services is the Press and Cultural Affairs Department of the Consulate General of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in New York. Monique Ruhe, Cultural Attaché for the Netherlands to the U.S., heads this department, which further consists of Robert Kloos, Deputy Head and responsible for Visual Arts, Architecture and Design; Noah Waxman, Senior Policy Officer and responsible for performing arts, film, literature; and Shomara Roosblad, Senior Cultural Officer and responsible for shared cultural heritage and old masters.

    FUTURE 400, a 2024/2025 initiative of the Netherlands Consulate General in New York, endeavors to honor 400 years of Dutch-New York history with honesty and integrity, creating space for others who share this common heritage to voice their feelings and experiences at this monumental moment. Partners from cultural to commercial fields, from the New York area to the Netherlands will come together to create new work and new opportunities that will continue to write the next chapter of our shared story, our collective…FUTURE 400. More information:

Dear Mr. Welles

 archive : 2023

Featuring: Bebe Blanco Agterberg

Presented by: Melkweg Expo & Photoville, with additional support from the Consulate General of the Netherlands in New York
  • Melkweg Expo
  • Photoville
  • Dutch Culture USA

Supported by:

  • Dutch Culture USA
  • Digital Silver Imaging


ON VIEW AT: Container 24

View Location Details Download a detailed map of this location Brooklyn Bridge Park – Emily Warren Roebling Plaza

1 Water St
Brooklyn, NY 11201

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