BMX-Stunt vor der Kulisse der Zeche Zollverein in Essen


Event highlights 2017 in North Rhine-Westphalia

Autor: Julia Bauer

Sport Events

Ice Hockey World Championship, Cologne
The 81st IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship will be hosted jointly by Germany and France from 5th to 21st May 2017.  The 16 leading ice hockey nations will get ready for play off in Paris and Cologne. 34 of the 64 matches in total will be played in the Lanxess Arena in Cologne, which with its crowd capacity of 18,500 is the largest multi-functional venue used for ice hockey in Europe. |

Ruhr Games, Dortmund, Hagen and Hamm
From 15th to 18th June 2017, the programme will include action sports, Olympic disciplines and a great deal of live music, outdoors and free of charge. Young sportsmen and women from all over Europe will compete in around 100 tournaments overall. The new element of the Ruhr Games 2017 is the focus on three locations with different themes. Dortmund will host the action sports and festival, while international competitions will be held in Hagen and the European Youth Encounter will take place in Hamm. Further details on the programme will be announced in the spring of 2017.

Grand Départ of the Tour de France, Düsseldorf
The most famous cycle race in the world will get off to a celebratory start in the capital city of North Rhine-Westphalia from 29th June to 2nd July 2017. The sporting event itself will officially begin with the presentation of the teams on 29th June 2017. On the following day, the formal training of the teams will take place, which in the past has already been a magnet for the general public. On 1st July, the prologue will be run in the form of a 13-kilometre individual time trial. On 2nd July 2017, the second stage will begin from the Burgplatz square, and will cover around 200 kilometres through the Neandertal valley to Mettmann before following a wide curve back again. Over a million visitors are expected to travel to Düsseldorf to watch the event.


Special festivals and events

The European Green Capital: Essen
The European Commission has named Essen as the European Green Capital 2017. After a large opening ceremony on 21st and 22nd January 2017, there will be a programme of 3,000 events and civic projects throughout the year. They will include a sports activity day on 2nd July 2017, when the inner city ring road will be closed to traffic, and the opening of a trial bathing area in the Ruhr river. At a family festival on 24th September, the longest garden in the Ruhr Area will be created with a large number of small plant boxes. A “Green Fashion Tour” is also being planned, taking shoppers to the best locations for green fashion.

State horticultural show, Bad Lippspringe
From 12th April to 15th October 2017, the state horticultural show in North Rhine-Westphalia will focus on “forest” as its main theme.  The slogan for the next show, in Bad Lippspringe, is “Blumenpracht & Waldidylle” (“Floral glory & forest idyll”). The centrepiece of the show is the “Kurwald” health cure forest, which covers around 200 hectares and which was planted at the beginning of the 19th century. The forest theme will also dominate the ten new playgrounds, which will be built on the horticultural show site. Another special feature of the site are the inland dunes, which have been created over the centuries by loose sand blown across from the adjacent Senne heathland.

375 years of pilgrimage, Kevelaer
Almost a million pilgrims travel every year to Kevelaer on the Lower Rhine. Their destination is the Consolatrix Afflictorium in the town centre, which houses an image of Mary. The image has been housed there since 1st June 1642, and has attracted an increasing number of people over the centuries. The 375th anniversary will be celebrated in particular with a number of festive events from 31st May to 11th June 2017. The highlights include a “Marien-Festspiel”, or festival of Mary, which will celebrate its world première on 10th June, as well as a number of festival masses and processions with the holy image.
In the long term, the town is planning to build a saltwater and pilgrim park, which aims to offer new inspiration to spiritual tourists. Under the motto “Gesund an Leib und Seele” (“Healthy in body and spirit”), a complex is planned for completion by 2018 with a graduation works, a Bible garden and a Kneipp hydrotherapy area.


Special exhibitions

Skulptur Projekte 2017, Münster
Every 10 years, Münster becomes one of the most important locations for contemporary art in Europe. For the “Skulptur Projekte”, or sculpture projects, the entire city becomes one big exhibition space. From 10th June to 1st October 2017, 30 new artistic works ranging from classic sculpture to performance art will be distributed over the city. For example, a bridge will be created just below the water surface, which will connect the two banks of the “Münsteraner Hafen” port. In the historic city hall, a living search engine will be set up, in which performers answer visitors’ enquiries on the Peace of Westphalia. Near the train station, senior citizens will be offered advice on all matters relating to body art, and can purchase tattoo designs from different artists.

“Wunder Roms”, Paderborn
From 31st March to 13th August 2017, the “Wunder Roms” (“Wonders of Rome”) will draw visitors to the “Paderboner Diözesanmuseum” (Paderborn Diocesan Museum). Following in the footsteps of well-known travellers to Rome, the exhibition, “Wunder Roms im Blick des Nordens” (“Wonders of Rome in the Eyes of the North”) will trace an arc from the Middle Ages through to contemporary photographic and video art. Other masterworks and sacred treasures from the Vatican and Capitoline museums will be brought to Paderborn. Alongside these testimonies to the thousands-of-years-old Roman culture, valuable manuscripts from the Middle Ages will be on display, as well as treasury art and architectural fragments and sketches, drawings, sculptures and photographs from important artists from the north. The exhibits of particular interest include the original of the huge marble hand of the colossal statue of Emperor Constantine (around 315 AD), which can be seen for the first time in Germany, reliquaries from the Papal Chapel and a bronze ball which once crowned the tip of the obelisks in the Vatican. Works by Maarten van Heemskerk, an artist from the Netherlands, or the Flemish artist Peter Paul Rubens, show Roman antiquity as the epitome of the artistic ideal of the Renaissance and Baroque periods.

Gerhard Richter. The Editions, Essen
From 7th April to 30th July 2017, to mark the 85th birthday of Gerhard Richter, the Museum Folkwang will present for the first time all the artist’s editions produced since 1965. These works, comprising around 165 pieces and including prints, photographs, artist’s books and oil paintings, constitute an important part of Richter’s output and offer an insight into more than five decades of multi-faceted artistic work.

Joan Miró’s sculptures, Brühl
The world-famous Catalan painter, graphic artist and sculptor Joan Miró is regarded as being the most important representative of abstract art in surrealism. From 3rd September 2017 to 14th January 2018, the Max Ernst Museum Brühl will dedicate an exhibition to Miró’s sculptures in particular, which are less well-known compared to his paintings and graphic works. During the 1960s and 1970s, Miró attempted to recreate the pictorial world of his paintings in a three-dimensional space. His first sculptures were inspired by paintings, or were created as an antithesis of them.

Expedition Mittelalter, Cologne
The Museum Schnütgen is home to a valuable collection of artistic works from the Middle Ages, including wood and stone sculptures, valuable goldsmith’s art and ivory. From 7th October 2017 to 28th January 2018, the museum will offer a particularly rare artistic delight. In the exhibition “Expedition Mittelalter” (“Expedition to the Middle Ages”), works and special groups of objects will be on display which are rarely shown and which in some cases have never been exhibited until now. A further special feature of the museum is its large exhibition space. The Romanesque Church of St. Cecilia, which itself is over 1,000 years old, provides the works with a calm, quiet space.

Edouard Manet, Wuppertal
From 24th October 2017 to 25th February 2018, the Von der Heydt-Museum will present the entire oeuvre of Edouard Manet, starting with his first tentative experiments as a schoolboy and ending with the final radiant garden images from Rueil in 1882.
The exhibition will focus on Manet’s relationship with French society during the 19th century. The overview of his work also includes paintings from his Spanish period, as well as the known lake scenes.


All events related to the anniversary of the Reformation

“Luther in der jüngeren deutschen Geschichte” (“Luther in Recent German History”), Lichtenau
Until 12th November 2017, an exhibition in the Kloster Dalheim monastery in Lichtenau near Paderborn will examine what still makes Luther the reformer a figure of fate for Germans today. The special exhibition begins with the 400th anniversary of the Reformation in 1917, when Germany was at war, before reflecting on how the Reformation was perceived in the National Socialist period and divided Germany through to the present day. The range of around 300 exhibits extends from high-ranking portraits such as Lucas Cranach’s image of the “old Luther” or Uwe Pfeifer’s installation “Tischgespräch mit Luther” (“Table conversation with Luther”) to unusual contemporary documents and everyday objects from the last 100 years of German history. Showpieces from the time of Martin Luther will also be on display, such as a child’s toy and a mass robe owned by the reformer. The outdoor area of the LWL-Landesmuseum für Klosterkultur, the state museum for monastery culture, will also be incorporated into the exhibition. In mid-June 2017, “Luthers Garten” (“Luther’s Garden”) will be opened. Text panels will be installed at selected points in the Dalheim monastery garden with information about Luther as a private individual and his everyday home life.

Reformation and religious diversity on the Rhine and Ruhr rivers, Essen
The exhibition “Der geteilte Himmel” (“The Divided Sky”) in the Ruhr Museum in Essen will use the anniversary of the Reformation as an opportunity to depict the relationship between and coexistence of different religions and confessions in the region, from the Late Middle Ages through to today. From 3rd April to 31st October 2017, the political, social and cultural aspects of this history will be illustrated with around 1,000 exhibits from over 150 museums, churches, libraries and archives, some of which will be on display for the first time.

Cranach the Elder, Düsseldorf
Lucas Cranach the Elder is ranked among the most eminent protagonists of the German Renaissance, was a close friend of Martin Luther and influenced artists for centuries. As one of the high points of the Reformation Year 2017, the Museum Kunstpalast in Düsseldorf will show a broad selection of works by the famous painter from Wittenberg from 8th April to 30th July 2017. The exhibition, “Cranach”, will show around 200 works from international museums and collections. Important panel paintings, drawings and prints will also illuminate the important role that Cranach played in the spread of the Reformation.





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