Modern and contemporary art meets antiquity: two top-class collections are being presented in the Ruhr-Universität art collections. The Modern Art Collection presents trends in US and European art from post-war modernism to the present day, while the Classical Antiquities Collection shows Greek, Roman and Persian artefacts.
Two years after the founding of the Ruhr-Universität Bochum, the art critic Albert Schulze-Vellinghausen bequeathed his collection of gestural abstract and constructive-concrete art with works by Josef Albers, Sam Francis, Cy Twombly, Al Held and others to the university. The modern art collection's basis has been constantly expanded since then and continued through to the present. Thanks to Paul Dierich's generous support, works of art by Alberto Giacometti, George Rickey, Richard Serra, Frank Stella, Günther Uecker and others were acquired in the mid-1970s. In the 1990s, the collection was enriched by photographs by Bernd and Hilla Becher, Andreas Gursky, Candida Höfer, Thomas Struth, and others, as well as works by Gerhard Richter, Bruce Nauman, and Christian Boltanski. Works by Imi Knoebel, James Turrell, Franz Erhard Walther, Katharina Grosse and many younger artists were added in the 2000s, following successful exhibitions.
Around 1,000 works of art from the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art are shown today in changing collection presentations, commented on, updated and reflected through themed exhibitions and artistic interventions.
In the historical distance, the art collection, like the university's architecture, proves to be a testimony to the once forward-thinking attitude of the young Federal Republic of Germany. Works of art, architecture and art-in-architecture recall the international modernism of the 1960s and 1970s and relate it to the present.
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