VU Art collection

Academic research and education at VU is characterized by a high level of ambition, and encourages free and open communications and ideas. Only by exchanging ideas and knowledge we can understand the world we are living in. Therefore VU strives for inclusiveness and openness where different opinions can be exchanged. Our art policy contributes to this goal. Art makes us conscious of our own thoughts and ideas and makes us aware of other perspectives. It contributes to an open and investigative attitude that is needed to conduct science.



The art collection of the VU has grown by acquisitions, art assignments and gifts. The collection contains about 1200 works in various media and provides an overview of important artistic and social developments since the late '70s. Artworks of Carel Visser, Cornelis Rogge, Tom Claassen, Philip Akkerman, Gé Karel van der Sterren, Isabelle Wenzel and Jan Banning are part of the VU Collection.

Since 2016 VU University Amsterdam aspires to a distinctive and relevant art policy by bringing together current artistic research and scientific research. Science investigates reality by interpreting and objectifying data. Art mirrors the human, subjective experience of reality. The combination of knowledge and experience leads to insight into ourselves and the world around us.

When VU University moved from the city center to Buitenveldert in 1967, the Executive Board ordered a committee to bring art to the campus. The Exposorium committee organized exhibitions, mediated in art commissions and set up an art loan system. Because of the freedom that prevailed, the VU was seen as a platform for experiment and innovation.

From the collection
Jan Banning

India Sushma Prasad, 2003
80 x 80 cm

Collections November 21, 2019
Kabinet der Verwondering
Vrije Universiteit
Collections June 24, 2019
What about me?
Collections September 27, 2018
Symposium Producers - Parasites - Hosts
Vrije Universiteit
Collections July 1, 2018
Annabel Howland
Collections February 17, 2018
Collections February 17, 2017
Verloren en zeldzame geuren
Vrije Universiteit
Collections January 27, 2016
Double Dutch
VU Expositieruimte
Collections May 26, 2014
Afscheidstentoonstelling Hendriekje Bosma
VU Kunstcollectie
Collections May 30, 2013
Martina Strusny - The Geography of the Imagination
VU Exposorium
In summary

Collection title
VU Art collection

Wende Wallert

Head office
Amsterdam, Zuidas

Art collection locations
Campus but mostly in main building

Number of art works
1200 of which more than 300 make up the main collection.

Launch year

all disciplines

Focus of collection
Contemporary artistic research in relation to scientific research

Guided tours
On request    


Art collection website

- Hendriekje Bosma/Yvonne van Ulden, Exposorium1967-2007, forty years of art policy at the VU, Amsterdam 2007
-Hendriekje Bosma, Liseth van den Dungen, Helene van Fentener van Vlissingen(student-assistants),Buitenveldert 1958-1998-2008, the development of a city side, Amsterdam 1998
-Bert Jansen, (edited by Fieke Konijn/John Vrieze), art on the campus, the realisation of the 1 % regulation at the Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam 1986   

Exposition space
Two or three times a year the VU organizes presentations in which artistic and scientific research are combined. This can result in an exhibition but also other forms as a residency, performance symposium or digital presentation are possible, The goal is to involve the public in actual developments in art and science.

- GET LOST, art route at the Zuidas, with upcoming artists 22-6 t/m 22-9 2018
- OPEN ZUIDAS, manifestation Amsterdam Zuid/Zuidas, open ateliers, companies, art route, 25/26/27-10-2012
- Life after planning, symposium Visuele Identiteit Zuidas Amsterdam, Vrije Ruimten Zuidas AIR: i.s.m. Sandberg Instituut Amsterdam, Virtueel Museum Zuidas, Vrije Universiteit, 01-03-2011  

Works on loan
Bas Princen, Cooling Plant Dubai, 2009, photo, 125 X 150 cm, ed. 1/6, "Rollercoaster, the image in the 21st century", Museum of the Image (MOTI), Breda, 2012