It’s always exciting to go abroad and explore new places, but sometimes interesting things are closer than you think – you just need to know where to look. Recently, online guide kunstgebiet.ruhr, which focuses on public art in the Ruhr region, the largest urban area of Germany, was launched. The guide covers the area’s cultural scene and is divided into the following categories: sculptures, painting, photography, light installations, sound art, landmarks, architecture, landscape, media and street art. Not only does it offer in-depth biographies of the artists, there’s also the option to select a specific city you’re looking for. Additionally, the guide features various urban routes, which are great for exploring several public artworks at once.
From large-scale installations to tiny artworks, we’ve assembled a list of our Top 10 public artworks from the Ruhr region. If you want to see more unique art pieces from the region, click here.
© VG BILD-KUNST, BONN 2015, photography: Andreas Ren, kunstgebiet.ruhr
‘Scherbenmosaik’ by Emil Schumacher is an artwork in Hagen that has been there since 1957.
© Robert Adams, photography: Andreas Ren, kunstgebiet.ruhr
This large-scale installation was set up in 1959 by artist Robert Adams and consists of white concrete. It’s located in Gelsenkirchen and functions as a part of the facade of the local music theater.
© VG BILD-KUNST, BONN 2015, kunstgebiet.ruhr
What looks like a roller coaster at first, is in fact a steel sculpture in Duisburg by the artist duo Heike Mutter and Ulrich Genth. The piece is 21 meters high and features a curved staircase that invites the visitor for a walk to slow down.
© Inges Idee, photography: Katharina Kemper, kunstgebiet.ruhr
Located in Oberhausen, this electric post features a special curved shape that makes it stand out from the others and questions the viewer’s perception. ‘Inges Idee’ is an artist collective that was founded in 1992 by Hans Hemmert, Axel Lieber, Thomas A. Schmidt and Georg Zey.
© Ian Hamilton Finlay, Fotograf: Skulpturenmuseum Glaskasten Marl
‘A View To The Temple’ is an installation located in Marl, which was created in 1987 by artist Ian Hamilton Finlay. The artwork consists of four guillotines, each one with an inscription of a different French author in reference to the French Revolution.
© Günther Zins, photography: Andreas Ren, kunstgebiet.ruhr
Artist Günther Zins created this public installation in 2006 by setting up a steel pyramid in Bochum.
© VG BILD-KUNST, BONN 2015, photography: Andreas Ren
‘Hochlarmark’ is a light installation in Recklinghausen by artist duo Maik and Dirk Löbbert. It was first installed in 2005.
© Marcello Morandini, kunstgebiet.ruhr
Italian artist, designer and architect Marcello Morandini created a steel sculpture for the city of Bottrop in 2011. Its design features a circle made of numerous building blocks, which is reminiscent to the artist’s style of using geometric forms.
© Michael Sailstorfer, photography: Andreas Ren, kunstgebiet.ruhr
Artist Michael Sailstorfer created unique street lights which can be seen in Recklinghausen. The five different light sculptures feature various geometric designs and are not only beautiful to look at, but also keep insects away from pedestrians at night.
© VG BILD-KUNST, BONN 2015, photography: Katharina Kemper
‘Totems’ is an installation by Spanish artist Agustín Ibarrola, which was set up in Bottrop in 2002.
– In collaboration with Kunstgebiet Ruhr –