A unique open-air museum on the VUB Main Campus
The start of more art on campus
Over forty years ago, the VUB Alumni Association donated its first sculpture. 1980 marked the start of the collection of outdoor sculptures at the Humanist Sculpture Park. The goal of the Alumni Association was, first and foremost, to make the university grounds a more beautiful place. Since VUB split off from the ULB in 1969, various functional, grey buildings have been erected on the former military training grounds in Etterbeek. During those early years, little attention was paid to the development of the surrounding area. That changed with the installation of the first open-air sculpture.
A humanist touch
The collection of open-air sculptures is still being expanded to this day on the initiative of and thanks to the expertise of Professor Emeritus Willem Elias. During his career at VUB, he strived for more art on campus. Over the years, this resulted in a university sculpture collection with a humanist touch. The artists whose works are exhibited at the Humanist Sculpture Park not only resonate as influential names in Belgian art, they are also considered genuine freethinkers. Through their art, they express principles such as freedom of inquiry, liberalism, science, democracy, friendship and compassion.
A new generation of artists
From 2022 to 2024, ten temporary open-air sculptures created by a new generation of artists will join the permanent collection. The sculptures are linked through the humanist message they share. This message is the explicit basis for the acquisition and installation of the sculptures on campus. The collection is a visual nod to the values and philosophy of VUB, or, conversely, a way to question them.
Fast forward to:
The permanent sculptures
Discover all permanent open-air sculptures, their location, and the message they convey. This overview shows the fourteen sculptures chronologically, based on their date of installation on campus, thereby forming a visual timeline of the creation of the Humanist Sculpture Park.
Plan your visit
The Humanist Sculpture Park is open 24/7 and can be visited free of charge.
Parking is available and the area is wheelchair-accessible.
VUB Main Campus
Information about the sculptures
Each sculpture is accompanied by a QR code that gives access to an audio fragment. You can play it on your smartphone to discover the stories behind the sculptures. We recommend that you bring headphones for a more comfortable audio experience.
Want to take a personal tour?
Request a tour from Bjorne.