Sonsbeek '86

2 July – 29 August 1986


Saskia Bos


Fifteen years after the high-profile Sonsbeek outside the limits, Sonsbeek '86 is more subdued. This time, in fact, most of the sculptures have been placed in Sonsbeek, about half of which were made especially for the exhibition. Curator Saskia Bos relates to previous Sonsbeek in creating a framework for the exhibition. While during Sonsbeek '71 the artworks in the park were made for a particular spot, now many works are not resistant to the outdoors. Most of the artworks are housed in one of the three glass pavilions, which deliberately look like greenhouses. Bos writes about this in the introduction, "For more than ever, today's artworks are artificial products [sic] that do not adapt to nature, let alone merge with it." The pavilions isolate most of the artworks from the park. Because of their isolation, these works are not only more static and perhaps more art-like, but also more autonomous. The viewer's attention is drawn to the works themselves. In doing so, Bos has focused on works of art that may cause confusion because of their striking skin. Yet other sculptures, however, are far less mysterious.

Sonsbeek '86 created a picture of diverse developments in contemporary sculpture. Some works of art can be characterized as "museum art," while others actually "blend" with park Sonsbeek.


  • Siah Armajani
  • Richard Artschwager
  • Michael Asher
  • Marco Bagnoli
  • Bazilebustamant
  • Joseph Beuys
  • Marcel Broodthaers
  • James Casebere
  • John Chamberlain
  • Tony Cragg
  • Richard Deacon
  • Jiří Georg Dokoupil
  • Lili Dujourie
  • Ger van Elk
  • Luciano Fabro
  • Weiss/Fischli
  • Barry Flanagan
  • O’Brien/Fortuyn
  • Katherina Fritsch
  • Dan Graham
  • Jenny Holzer
  • Rebecca Horn
  • Shirazeh Houshiary
  • Anish Kapoor
  • Niek Kemps
  • Harald Klingelhöller
  • Bertrand Lavier
  • Mario Merz
  • Marisa Merz
  • Reinhard Mucha
  • Hidetoshi Nagasawa
  • Bruce Nauman
  • Claes Oldenburg
  • Tom Otterness
  • Panamarenko
  • Guilio Paolini
  • Giuseppe Penone
  • Thomas Schütte
  • Jeroen Snijders
  • Ettore Spalletti
  • Rosemarie Trockel
  • Peer Veneman
  • Jan Vercruysse
  • Henk Visch
  • Carel Visser
  • Isolde Wawrin
  • Franz West
  • Heimo Zobernig


Park Sonsbeek


Sonsbeek ’86 didn't have an extra public program.



Sonsbeek ’86 (twee delen), 1986

Design: Anton Beeke
Publisher: Veen-Reflex

Facts and numbers

48 artists . 45 art works ⋅ 3 glass pavilions, designed by Benthem Crouwel architects and Wiek Röling . 78.000 paid visits

Nog te zien in Arnhem

Fortuyn/O’Brien, The Owl and the Pussycat went to see, 1986
Locatie: beeldentuin Museum Arnhem

Rebecca Horn, Venustrechter, 1986
Locatie: beeldentuin Museum Arnhem

Jenny Holzer, Under a Rock1986
Locatie: beeldentuin Museum Arnhem