Being so totally, incredibly artistic, that’s more than possible in Rotterdam. But did you know that in addition to major museums such as Kunsthal Rotterdam, Depot Boijmans van Beuningen and Kunstinstituut Melly, there are many galleries with a more underground cult status?
If you can’t get enough of ‘everything art’, pay a visit to the locations in this list: 10x underground art gallery in Rotterdam. Feast your eyes!
1. A Tale of A Tub
This former bathhouse of the Justus van Effen Complex in Rotterdam is now called A Tale of A Tub and is a non-profit institution for contemporary art and culture. The focus of this art gallery lies upon social, political and environmental issues.
The topics of the exhibitions cover nature, climate, ecology and the shared living environment, gender, feminism and decolonisation, as well as the increasing influence of digital infrastructures and advanced capitalist and neoliberal systems and governments. So nothing too breezy, really.
Justus van Effenstraat 44, 3027 TK Rotterdam
2. Contour Gallery
In 2017, Muriel Mager founded Contour Gallery, driven by her love for photography and modern art. This art gallery is located in Rotterdam West, right next to the city centre, in a side street of the Nieuwe Binnenweg.
Contour Gallery specialises in photography and sculpture. A diverse program is offered, consisting mainly of solo exhibitions by artists affiliated with the gallery.
Josephstraat 164, 3014 TX Rotterdam
3. Hilton Art Lab – H(a)L
In 2020, a number of Rotterdam artists were looking for an alternative, interesting place to present their work and to meet other artists. The monumental space next to the Hilton Hotel in the heart of the city centre was empty for a long time.
The Hilton Hotel management makes the space available for various types of exhibitions, installations, film projections, performances, wall paintings and musical encounters. The curator (and also participant) of the activities in the Hilton Art Lab is Herman Lamers.
Weena 10, 3012 CM Rotterdam
4. Ronald Hunter Paintings
Ronald Hunter is a Dutch artist with a focus on abstract and modern paintings. His work screams colour and texture. Ronald has a graphic design background, which reflects in his work in the form of graphic art and typography. He has his own gallery on the Beukelsdijk in Rotterdam West.
Beukelsdijk 102-B, 3022 DK Rotterdam
5. Gallery Untitled
Gallery Untitled is the largest art gallery in Rotterdam. This gallery is located in an old school building in Rotterdam North and covers more than 350m2.
Every Friday, Saturday and Sunday you are welcome between 11:00 and 17:00 to marvel at beautiful creations by different artists. On the remaining days you can visit the gallery by appointment.
Fun fact: because of performances (during exhibitions) by well-known writers and musicians such as Wilfried de Jong, Loes Luca, Hugo Borst and Elfie Tromp, Gallery Untitled has become a household name in Rotterdam.
Koningsveldestraat 14, 3037 VS Rotterdam
6. Murals Inc.
Murals Inc. is a Rotterdam bureau for contemporary murals, working throughout the Netherlands. They are committed to outdoor murals. Think, for example, of works of art in which the imagination of the viewer is put to the test.
This bureau is located in Rotterdam South. Murals Inc. shows a new mural show every three months, based on a specific theme, in their gigantic 600m2 space. The themes emphasise different movements and painting styles.
Piekstraat 31 18, 3071 EL Rotterdam
7. Foundation MESH
Foundation MESH is a non-profit organisation founded by Danijel Stoiljkovic and Inger van Beek. They operate as the artistic director and project leader of the foundation. MESH collaborates with all kinds of artists from all over Europe. The exhibitions and art events that MESH organises take place at various locations in Rotterdam.
Westzeedijk 375, 3016 GR Rotterdam
8. Garage Rotterdam
Garage is not an unknown name in the Rotterdam art world, but it has such a cult status that this location should not be missing from our list. Garage Rotterdam is an old Volkswagen Garage that was transformed in 2011 by architect Remy Meijers, into a 500m2 non-profit art space with a coffee bar.
Garage Rotterdam programs four thematic exhibitions per year, which are often linked to social topics. Local and international talent gets a stage in this art gallery.
Goudsewagenstraat 27, 3011 RH Rotterdam
On Friday and Saturday, SHIMMER art gallery is open from 14:00 to 18:00. Eloise Sweetman and Jason Hendrik Hansma developed this curatorial studio – experimenting with making exhibitions within time and space – to rethink the boundaries of culture, geography, the body and age. And to celebrate new fusions of art and community.
Waalhaven Oostzijde 1, 3087 BM Rotterdam
10. Galerie Atelier Herenplaats
Art is for everyone. Galerie Atelier Herenplaats is committed to this notion and that is really nice to see. Herenplaats is the location for artists with a special story. Every day, around 35 artists visit this studio, people with visual talent and an intellectual disability or psychiatric background.
Herenplaats was founded in 1991 and has developed an adapted art training for artists with a special story. Classes are given by visual artists and visual arts teachers. When the students successfully complete the academy, they move on to the artists’ collective.
Schietbaanstraat 1, 3014 ZT Rotterdam
So, are you inspired? Are you going to an exhibition in one of these underground locations with your mother, friend or sister sometime soon? Let us know which art gallery you choose!