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Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen, photo: Katja Illner

Our three houses K20, K21 und F3

A visit to the Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen is an unforgettable encounter with outstanding art works of the 20th and 21st-century. Three houses – K20, K21, and F3 – are united under a common “roof”:

Available here for the permanent presentation of one of the most important European art collections, ranging from classic modernism to the present day, as well as for internationally acclaimed temporary exhibitions, for performances and screenings is more than 10,000 m² of exhibition space.

at Grabbeplatz

On display in the collection of K20 are paintings, drawings, sculptures, and installations by artists ranging from Henri Matisse to Gerhard Richter, from Pablo Picasso to Andy Warhol. The Klee Collection, which now comprises 101 works of art, is among the largest by this major artist in Germany.

Dominating the ensemble of works by Joseph Beuys is the installation Palazzo Regale (1985). A rarity among the numerous surrealistic works is a group of plaster sculptures by Max Ernst. Masterpieces such as Wassily Kandinsky’s Composition IV (1911), Max Beckmann’s pivotal Night (1918/19), Ernst Ludwig Kirchner’s Two Women on the Street (1914), and Jackson Pollock’s Number 32 of 1950 – a key work of postwar American art – represent additional highlights. The building is also the setting for numerous acclaimed special exhibitions.


in the Ständehaus
With its enormous glass dome, the Ständehaus – located in Düsseldorf’s southern city center – is a striking sight even from a distance. The historic building, set on the idyllic Kaiserteich (Imperial Pond), has had a long career: originally the Parliament Building of the Rhine Province of Prussia, later seat of the provincial government, today a museum of contemporary art. Constructed in 1880, and renovated recently by the Munich architecture office Kiessler+Partner, the building has belonged to the Kunstsammlung since 2002.

The spacious plaza is spanned at a height of 35 meters by a broad glass cupola, beneath which sculptures and installations are on view. The numerous cabinet galleries found on three levels behind arcade passageways function as “artist rooms” for presenting works by internationally recognized artists. Here we find groundbreaking installations such as Section publicité (1972) by Marcel Broodthaers, TV-Garden (1974 – 77 / 2002) by video pioneer Nam June Paik, and Intensive Care (2010) by Thomas Hirschhorn. The spacious basement level and the northern galleries of the Bel Etage are used for temporary exhibitions.


Schmela Haus: F3
Just a few steps away from K20, we find the Schmela Haus, which occupies a singular position in architectural history: the building, whose elements, including balconies, windows, and view axes, interpenetrate in a subtle fashion, is the work of the Dutch architect Aldo van Eyck, who built it in 1971 for the avant- garde art dealer Alfred Schmela. The legendary building was the setting for important exhibitions such as Joseph Beuys’s “The End of the 20th Century.” Inspired by this visionary architecture, F3 is today a venue for discussion and debate, for conferences and performances.

With “Futur 3,” international guests from the realms of culture and scholarship share their perspectives on the still undetermined future of art, museum life, and society as a whole.