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All events at a glance...

... and the highlights in 2019!

All events that take place at the UNESCO World Heritage Site Zollverein are included in our calendar – due to the large number of offers, however, the calendar is only available in German. This is why we are presenting the highlights of our 2019 programme here.

More information can be found in our calendar (German only).

PACT Zollverein

Performing Arts. Choreographisches Zentrum NRW. Tanzlandschaft Ruhr

Founded in 2002 and at home in the former pithead bath at Shaft 1/2/8, PACT Zollverein sees itself as an initiator, driving force, and stage for ground-breaking developments in the fields of dance, performance, theatre, media, and visual arts.

Three programmatic lines characterise the work of the institution, which contributes on a regional, national, and international level to the localisation and appreciation of dance and performance as art forms in their own right: PACT Zollverein creates a space for concentrated production processes within the framework of the ‚Residenzprogramm,‘ which is open to artists from all over the world. The ‚Plattformen‘ section initiates the interdisciplinary exchange between artists, scientists, and students as well as the critical questioning of their methods and results. A third focus is on a top-class stage programme comprising world premieres, co-productions, and guest performances.

Zollverein Concerts

Music for your ears

Listen to classical music, jazz, pop, and contemporary music where people used to labour: For more than 20 years, Zollverein Foundation has been inviting guests of all ages to the World Heritage Site. For 2019, the Foundation has once again put together a varied programme. Well-known co-operations and formats will be continued, and new highlights will be set.

100 Years of Bauhaus

Exhibitions, festivals, guided tours, and much more

As part of the „Bauhaus 100“ anniversary, which will be celebrated throughout Germany in 2019, the UNESCO World Heritage Site Zollverein with its coal mine and coking plant is the anchor point for 100 locations along the Route of Modernism. To mark the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Bauhaus, a two-day symposium entitled „100 Years of Bauhaus in the West“ was hosted at the UNESCO World Heritage Site Zollverein in September 2018. The World Heritage Site Zollverein celebrates the Bauhaus year 2019 with a festival as well as exhibitions, performances, concerts, guided tours, workshops, and lectures.

contemporary art ruhr (C.A.R.)

Photo/Media Art Fair 8 to 10 March 2019

Art. New. Visionary! Since 2006, contemporary art ruhr (C.A.R.) – Germany’s first media art fair – has been presenting art disciplines beyond the classic categories at Zollverein. The latest format focuses on photography, installation, virtual reality, 3D printing, light art, video art, animation, internet art, and experimental music.

Innovative Art Fair 25 to 27 October 2019

A fixed date for the international, national, and regional art scene is the autumn fair of contemporary art ruhr: innovative galleries for contemporary art, institutions, art projects, and selected talents participate year after year. At the same time, special exhibitions, the C.A.R. Video Lounge, and a supporting programme featuring performances and workshops take place.

Departure in the West.

The Margarethenhöhe artists’ colony / Special exhibition at the Ruhr Museum 8 April 2019 to 5 January 2020

2019 marks the 100th anniversary of the founding of the so-called Kleines Atelierhaus („Small Studio House“) on Essen’s famous Margarethenhöhe, which the founder of the garden city, Margarethe Krupp, had built for the artist Hermann Kätelhön.

It was the nucleus of an artistic circle that established itself at the Margarethenhöhe in the following years. In addition to Kätelhön, it included the sculptors Joseph Enseling, Will Lammert, and Richard Malin, the painters and graphic artists Gustav Dahler, Kurt Lewy, Hermann, and Philipp Schardt, the goldsmith Elisabeth Treskow, the bookbinder Frida Schoy, and the photographer Albert Renger-Patzsch. They created an artists‘ colony in the middle of the Ruhr Area, which dealt with the artistic and crafts production in the industrial area on the Rhine and Ruhr.

With over 600 exhibits, the exhibition illustrates the involvement of the group of artists in the cultural awakening in the industrial region in the 1920s and tells of the construction of the estate, the coexistence of the artists, and the impact of this artists‘ colony in western Germany.

All around Zollverein.

Life in the North of Essen Photographs by Ulrich Weichert / Rund um Zollverein. Vom Leben im Essener Norden Fotografien von Ulrich Weichert / 1 April to 25 August 2019

Exhibition in the Round Thickener: During several stays last autumn, photographer Ulrich Weichert from Berlin captured the life around Zollverein. He took his pictures in colour, black and white, and in a narrative style, as it is also characteristic of „street photography“.

Ulrich Weichert explored the districts surrounding the World Heritage Site, had conversations and made contacts. His works include both scenic motifs and portraits of people in their everyday lives. Zollverein Foundation now presents 29 of Weichert’s photographs in the Round Thickener of the Coal Washery. In addition, individual works are on display at various locations in the Zollverein District – as a bridging gesture towards the urban areas. Ulrich Weichert discovered his motifs in stores and workshops, on the street and in snack bars, at sports fields and on the Zollverein premises. The empathy and the cautious curiosity with which he approached the people is still noticeable when looking at the pictures. The photographs present realistic, authentic, sometimes humorous, never cynical views of people’s everyday lives.


The Night of Industrial Heritage / 29 June 2019

200,000 visitors, 50 venues, 24 cities, one night: ExtraSchicht, the Night of Industrial Heritage, has been staging the Ruhr Metropolis since 2001. The cultural festival was conceived in 2001 with the idea of making the region’s industrial heritage visible and specifically networking it with each other.

At Zollverein, this year’s ExtraSchicht is all about the 100th anniversary of the Bauhaus. A varied programme including guided tours, exhibitions, stage programmes, walk acts, and performances as well as art installations and participatory activities in front of the unique backdrop of Zollverein awaits the audience. The Ruhr Museum presents a varied programme with free admission to its permanent and special exhibitions as well as free short guided tours of the special exhibition „Aufbruch im Westen. Die Künstlersiedlung Margarethenhöhe“ (Departure in the West. The artist settlement Margarethenhöhe). In addition, there are hands-on activities in the Zollverein Dyer’s Garden, and from 10 p.m. on, a lounge in the Erich Brost Pavilion on the rooftop of the Coal Washery is also dedicated to the Bauhaus anniversary.

Humans and animals in the Ruhr area

Mensch und Tier im Ruhrrevier / Gallery exhibition at the Ruhr Museum 8 July 2019 to 19 April 2020

The relationship between man and animal has been a history of power over thousands of years. Animals play a subordinate, passive role in this relationship.

Killing animals, using animals, loving animals, categorising animals, and interpreting animals – in five sections, the special exhibition focuses on the manifold relationships between humans and animals in the Ruhr Area. More than 100 objects – from the arrowhead from the Stone Age to the „Prize for the best udder“ for contemporary goat breeders – illustrate the constantly changing relationship.

In view of mass meat production and the destruction of natural habitats, the current ethical debate calls for a change in thinking. In this „animal turn“, the animals are to be given an upgraded, more active position – also for the benefit of humans. Because never before have animals been exploited so excessively and yet thought of so highly.

Works Swimming Pool

Including Open-air Cinema / 13 July to 1 September 2019

Bathing pleasure in a work of art: Leave all your cares behind at a glistening blue pool in the middle of the former coking plant: During the summer holidays in North Rhine-Westphalia, visitors to Zollverein can cool off, sunbathe, and relax in the Works Swimming Pool every day from noon to 8 p.m. Situated in a place full of contrasts in front of the coke oven battery, the 12×5-metre pool is one of the most exciting bathing locations in Germany. Where coal used to be baked into coke, two welded together overseas containers are now the summer meeting place in the North of Essen. The visit to the swimming pool is free of charge. The 2.40-metre deep pool is only suitable for swimmers, a pool supervisor is on site.

The Frankfurt-based artists Dirk Paschke and Daniel Milohnic created the Works Swimming Pool in 2001 as part of the „Contemporary Art and Criticism“ art project. Since then, the blue pool, framed by impressive industrial architecture, has stood symbolically for the structural change in the Ruhr Area.

In addition, the area at the Works Swimming Pool is turned into an open-air cinema every year.

From 19 July on, cinema films are screened on six Thursday evenings underneath the pusher machine, directly next to the pool. The fifth edition of the open-air cinema at the Works Swimming Pool features films in which the element of fire plays a central role. The programme was developed in cooperation with ‚Junge Freunde Zollverein‘.

Zollverein Holidays

15 July to 23 August 2019

During the summer holidays in North Rhine-Westphalia, the Zollverein Monument Path and the Ruhr Museum offer an exciting programme for boys and girls aged seven to twelve. In various workshops, the children can discover which animals and plants existed in the Ruhr Area in prehistoric times, how people in the Stone Age made jewellery and tools, or how miners used to extract coal at the world’s most beautiful coal mine and then refined it into coke at Europe’s largest coking plant.

Participation in the Zollverein Holidays is free of charge, registration is mandatory.

Gourmetmeile Metropole Ruhr

9 August to 1 September 2019

From 29 August to 01 September 2019, the chefs of „Essen genießen“ invite everyone to the Gourmetmeile Metropole Ruhr at the UNESCO World Heritage Site Zollverein. From typical miners‘ dishes to exotic delicacies, there is something for every taste.

During the four days of the Gourmetmeile Metropole Ruhr on the former Track Boulevard at Zollverein Shaft XII, top regional restaurateurs present their culinary skills. Lovers of regional miner’s cuisine also get their money’s worth: At least one typical miner’s dish is served at each stand. In addition to culinary temptations, a stage programme and a firework display on Saturday evening await guests and gourmets from across the region.

Zollverein World Heritage Run

Welterbelauf Zollverein / 7 September 2019

As in previous years, the motto of the 6th Zollverein World Heritage Run is: Taking part is all that counts!

Among the six races ranging from the 400-metre Bambini Race to the 5-kilometre „Race for Everyone“ to the ten-kilometre main distance, every running enthusiast will find the right challenge. All races lead along the impressive architecture of the industrial monument: along the Circular Walk, past the Twin Pithead Frame, the SANAA Building, across the Zollverein Spoil Tip, and the former Shaft 1/2/8. Start and finish are located on the premises of RAG Montan Immobilien GmbH at the Zollverein Coking Plant. The International Competition Rules of the German Athletics Federation (DLV) and the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) apply.

Großes Zechenfest

28 to 29 September 2019

Tradition with a future: On 28 and 29 September 2019, the advertising associations of District VI – Zollverein, in cooperation with Zollverein Foundation are inviting to the 30th Großes Zechenfest at the World Heritage Site. More than 50 events on five stages ensure excellent entertainment.

For the 30th edition of the Zechenfest, the organizers again expect well over 30,000 visitors to Zollverein Shaft XII. Where fathers, grandfathers, and great-grandfathers once worked hard, a weekend is spent celebrating, dancing, and laughing. With a lot of creativity and in good cooperation, the three advertising associations from Katernberg, Schonnebeck, and Stoppenberg, together with Zollverein Foundation, are putting together a varied programme in keeping with the motto „Tradition with a future“.


... der Sendung mit der Maus / 3 October 2019

On 3 October 2019, the motto throughout Germany is again „Doors open for the Mouse!“

For children and the whole family, Zollverein Foundation and the Ruhr Museum offer many exciting hands-on activities on the “ Türöffnertag“ (Door Opener Day) of the „Sendung mit der Maus“ (TV series for children called Mouse TV outside of Germany). For an entire day, a free, varied programme awaits all fans of the Mouse aged five and over at the Zollverein UNESCO World Heritage Site.

lit.RUHR 2019

International Literature Festival / 8 to 13 October 2019

In October 2019, the third International Literature Festival lit.RUHR takes place again in the whole Ruhr Area. 40 events for adults and 35 for children and young people are planned. Zollverein is the festival centre, in addition there are other venues in Essen.

Zollverein Ice Rink

7 December 2019 to 5 January 2020

In winter, the 150-meter-long Zollverein Ice Rink once again invites ice skaters and other ice sports enthusiasts to enjoy winter activities in the middle of the impressive coking plant.

According to the Marco Polo travel guide, „probably the most fascinating place in Germany for ice skating“: at Zollverein, Zollverein Foundation offers an opportunity for the whole family to ice-skate on the Zollverein Ice Rink for four weeks. Skating artists and anyone aspiring to become one can do pirouettes, whizz across the ice, or carefully take their first steps on the slippery surface.

In addition, the impressive industrial architecture, the icy 1,800-square metre area stretching alongside the impressive coke ovens, rust-red pipes, and high chimney stacks are also a unique experience for those watching. After dusk, when the light installation by Jonathan Speirs and Mark Major bathes the Zollverein Coking Plant in colourful light, the ice skaters experience a very special kind of winter romance.

New Year's Eve Run

Silvesterlauf / Sporting highlight at the end of the year

The New Year’s Eve Run around the UNESCO World Heritage Site Zollverein is a must for ambitious sports enthusiasts of all ages: from the 400-metre Bambini Race to the 1-kilometre distance for schoolchildren, the 5-kilometre “Race for Everyone” to the 10-kilometre main race, all sports enthusiasts will find the right challenge!

The registration portal for the traditional race with the special charm in front of a wonderful Ruhr Area scenery opens at the beginning of October 2019. Registrations can be submitted until 25 December 2019 via Start and finish are in front of Hall 12 on the UNESCO World Heritage Site Zollverein, changing rooms for the participants will be set up in Hall 5. The award ceremony will also take place there.

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