ARoS new international art project in 2017

In the summer of 2017 a great new international art project, stretching more than 4 km, will be initiated in Aarhus – as ARoS Aarhus Art Museum launches a triennial in the year that Aarhus will host the European Capital of Culture.


The title of the first triennial is THE GARDEN – End of Times, Beginning of Times. Apart from large crowds ARoS expects that the project will gain international recognition, attracting a large international public.

ARoS Director Erlend Høyersten explains: “I’m convinced that the level of ambition will create excitement and interest, and that ARoS will present an extraordinary art experience in 2017. ARoS will strive towards  breaking new grounds. We shall focus on new interfaces with the audience, show art of high quality, as well as challenge and confirm people's expectations of this type of events. ARoS’ ambition is to build on the enormous interest that the public showed towards Sculpture by the Sea Aarhus – but also to create something new!”

THE GARDEN - End of Times, Beginning of Times

The triennial will comprise three parts:

  • The Past – at ARoS Aarhus Art Museum
  • The Present – in the city centre of Aarhus
  • The Future – along the coast and in the forest south of Aarhus

Altogether, an art zone stretching more than 4 km .

The triennial will be curated with focus on the significant shift in the relationship between man and nature in the past, the present, and the future over a period of 400 years.  It will show how various world views (religious, political, ideological or scientific) have materialized themselves in man-made nature and in art.

The exhibition will cover 400 years of art history and reach from the Baroque garden culture over the major American land art projects to the contemporary environmentally oriented practices. 

The triennial is ARoS’ contribution to Aarhus 2017 European Capital of Culture. It is ARoS’ ambition that the project will be a major boost to the 2017 celebration and to international interest in the city. It will create excitement for art and stimulate the creative sectors. The project will suggest possibilities and perspectives for the years after 2017.

Due to the scope of THE GARDEN - End of Times, Beginning of Times’ Sculpture by the Sea Aarhus will not take place in 2017.

The new organisation is subject to approval by the Aarhus City Council.

Mayor of Aarhus Jacob Bundsgaard says:

”From its very first exhibition in 2009 Sculpture by the Sea has been a fantastic experience for the city’s citizens and visitors. But even the best projects need to be “rethought” in order to stay vibrant and attractive to the public, partners and sponsors. The new ARoS project will be even larger and more spectacular in terms of contents, exhibition period and space. I’m convinced that The Garden will become one of the greatest experiences during the European Capital of Culture 2017.

Alderman for Culture and Citizens' Services, Rabih Azad-Ahmad, says:

I find it very exciting and logical that the city’s large outdoor art exhibition is being rethought. It is important to me that as many citizens as possible get access to art and culture. The Garden will entail a broad presentation of visual art, and it will no doubt be a unique experience for the city’s citizens and visitors. My expectations are very high for the project, and I look forward to seeing it blossom during the European Capital of Culture 2017. 

David Handley, the Australian Founding Director of Sculpture by the Sea would like to thank everyone involved with the four Aarhus exhibitions.

“Since Sculpture by the Sea Aarhus was initiated by TRH Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary in 2009 the exhibition has attracted over 2 million visitors. I would like to take this opportunity to thank The Crown Prince Couple, the City of Aarhus, the people of Aarhus and the artists for their fantastic support of the exhibition and wish the wonderful people of Aarhus all the very best for the future.”

CEO Rebecca Matthews, European Capital of Culture Aarhus 2017, says:

“We look forward to this major project as part of the European Capital of Culture Aarhus 2017. The narrative of our relationship with nature is more relevant than ever, and also a major theme in our program. We are rethinking nature and culture to check our balance between progress and preservation and to make innovative and bold decisions about the way we shape our ecological future. I welcome The Garden project as a powerful contribution to this narrative. We know that many citizens and visitors enjoy exploring art and culture in unusual places in nature and the city”.


HE GARDEN – End of Times, Beginning of Times.

THE GARDEN – End of Times, Beginning of Times.

Please note that The Garden is not an open call. Artists and works will be selected by the curators.

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Anne Riis, Communications Officer
Mobile: 2535 7444 
Telephone: 8730 6621

©ARoS 2017