Since Lode Craeybeckx in 1950 initiated the Middelheimmuseum it has grown to become one of the most imposing sculpture gardens in Europe. The collection consists currently of 400 sculptures, of which there are more than 200 in the park. The initiator and socialist mayor of Antwerp, Lode Craeybeckx has been appropriately immortalized by Vic Gentils with a hull of plowshares and a gown made of steel.
Vic Gentils - Lode Craeybeckx - 1972 (230 x 120 x 100 cm)
The old Middelheim estate is already mentioned in the 14th century. It now occupies an area of 30 hectares and besides the Castle there are several exhibition pavilions, a flower garden and a landscaped orchard. In 2000, the park got a new outdoor venue, desgined by the French landscape architect Michel Desvigne. New purchases, such as the Bridge without a name of Ai Weiwei (2015) are located here.The park contains the old and new 'avant garde' next to each other and there is a large collection of French sculpture from Rodin to see. For me the sculpture 'Zotte Geweld' (1912) by Rik Wouters is the most convincing representation of the joy of life that Middelheim evokes in us.
Nel, the wife of Rik Wouters is portrayed here, she was his favorite model, also in his colorful paintings.
Near the casle delves Misconceivable (2010) by Erwin Wurm into the water
Tony Cragg: Envelope - 1996 (238 x 150 cm) bronze
The hushed dolmen of the French artist Eugène Dodeigne give the forest a mystical aura. The 'Drie Staanden' are made of rough blue lime stone coming from Soignies.
Eugène Dodeigne - Drie Staanden - 1978 (190 x 61 x 52 cm)
Pablo Gargallo - Profeet - 1933 (236 x 65 x 50 cm)
Pablo Gargallo shared with Picasso a studio in Paris around 1930, he experimented with different materials for his Prophet, but also made classical sculptures in marble and stone.
Giacomo Manu - Kardinaal - 1952 (170 x 49 x 51 cm)
Manzu was a personal friend of Pope John XXIII and combined Marxism and Roman Catholic faith, for Italy no unusual combination. There are more than fifty different sculptures of Cardinals made by him.
Jessica Stockholder - Born of Landscape Linoleum - 1999
(250 x 840 x 1270 cm)
This installation consists of concrete, nylon, methal and boxwood. Jessica Stockholder has made in this installation optimal use of the natural environment of the park: the boxwood hedge has been integrated in the artwork.
installation of a new piece of art
Middelheim Museum and Park are worthwile visiting. There are few places in Europe that can exhibit such an impressive collection of sculptures. Middelheim is open all year round, closed only on Mondays. Visiting hours are from 10-17. Visiting address of the Middelheim Museum is Middelheimlaan, Antwerp.