Art in public spaces: Street art & sculptures

The public spaces in Rotterdam are filled with art. While you’re out for a walk, you could come across sculptures of Rodin, Henry Moore and Picasso. These are interspersed with contemporary art by national and international artists and street art from the hip hop scene. Get inspired and discover the many works of art!

Street Art to discover for yourself

More and more street art is enriching the streets of Rotterdam. The colourful murals are made by top local, national and international street artists and are located in and around the centre.

The Rewriters App has 11 routes and areas to choose from where a lot of street art can be seen. The murals of the Rotterdam Street Art Museum art projects, on and around the West Kruiskade, and Rotterdam Art Ride (ROAR) in Rotterdam Zuid, are a part of these routes.

If you’re interested in an organised tour, check the Art Index Rotterdam website for tours in collaboration with the CBK Rotterdam or join the Free Street Art Walking Tour from hostel Ani & Haakien.

Visual arts in public spaces

The impressive collection of sculptures from Sculpture International Rotterdam with the three figureheads of Rotterdam – the Zadkine, the Gabo and the Moore – can be admired for free every day. This international collection, part of which can be found on the Westersingel, is part of Rotterdam’s entire collection of artworks, the City Collection. The collection is managed by Beeldende Kunst & Openbare Ruimte (BKOR). For the complete overview of visual art in public spaces, check the BKOR website.

Tours and routes

You can find a map of the walking route past the 65 unique works of Sculpture International Rotterdam at Rotterdam Tourist Information Coolsingel. Or pick up a map for the Rotterdam Light Route. It takes you past strikingly illuminated artworks, glowing architectural city icons and poetry that lights up in the dark. Download the Rotterdam Routes App and choose the Art & Poetry route for a personal story from city poet Hester Knibbe and artist Gyz La Rivière which passes a special selection of sculptures.

POW! WOW! Street art festival Rotterdam

Every year in September it’s time for street art festival POW! WOW! Rotterdam. National and international artists create beautiful murals in Rotterdam South. POW! WOW! is all about bringing people together through arts and culture.

POW! WOW! Was founded by artist Jasper Wong in 2010 in Hong Kong. In 2011, the first edition of POW! WOW! as a week-long festival was organized in his native state Hawaii. The POW! WOW! mural festival has since grown into a global leader of the street art movement.

Thousands of internationally renowned contemporary, street, and graffiti artists have contributed, creating large scale works of public art in 17 cities around the world. POW! WOW! can be found in American cities such as Long Beach, Worcester and Washington DC, and outside of the USA in (among others) Japan, Korea, Israel, Guam, Taiwan and Rotterdam, The Netherlands.

Art projects

There are also numerous art projects spread across the city which you should not miss. Don’t forget to go to the Markthal where the ‘Horn of Plenty’ decorates the interior; the largest work of art in the Netherlands, with an area of 11,000 m2. AVL Mundo’s Sculpture Park in the Merwe-Vierhavengebied (M4H) provides a spacious environment for people to walk, breathe deep, and explore the outdoor sculpture exhibition Uomo Analyticus, organized in collaboration with Science Gallery, Rotterdam.

The best museums in Rotterdam

The best museums in Rotterdam

Rotterdam is a bubbly mix of innovative architecture, lively festivals and challenging art and culture. The many exhibitions in top museums such as the Kunsthal Rotterdam and the Nederlands Fotomuseum are well worth a visit. For those that love art, don’t miss this top ten of museums and art institutions in Rotterdam. Or check out all museums and art institutions in Rotterdam.

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LHBTIQ+ monument
Rotterdam Street Art Museum

Rotterdam Street Art Museum

Outdoor street art museum
Santa Claus

Santa Claus

Symbol of consumerism