The New Arts Ruhr funding program:

The new funding program

For the future of the region

"The aim of promoting the new arts is to firmly anchor forward-looking art forms in the Ruhr region. Spaces for innovative artistic experiments and novel collaborations are intended to enrich the already special cultural offerings. With excellent working and living conditions, we also want to bind artists to the region and invite them to make the Metropolis of the Arts their project," says Isabel Pfeiffer-Poensgen, Minister for Culture and Science of North Rhine-Westphalia, summarizing the funding project.

Young creatives wanted

During the European Capital of Culture Year 2010, the Metropole Ruhr proved: Art is a force to be reckoned with here! And not in short supply. With around 5,500 events, countless large-scale projects such as the Still Life on the A40 or the glowing shaft signs, the Ruhr region made quite an impression with a year full of pictures, theater and music - and left behind a vibrant cultural landscape that is on fire for new artistic impulses.

The New Arts Ruhr funding program is aimed at young creatives from the scenes of electronic music, contemporary circus arts, urban and digital arts who want to become creatively active in the Ruhr metropolis. Neue Künste Ruhr is not a short-term idea. It is a decade project. Until 2030, the Ministry of Culture and Science of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia will support the contemporary projects of young artists from the above-mentioned disciplines.

Large events are intended to make the New Arts Ruhr visible and tangible, to offer creative artists platforms, and to set new highlights in the metropolis of the arts on the Ruhr.

What is being supported?

Anchor projects & individual support

After a development phase of about one year, the establishment of a Neue Künste Ruhr advisory boarded with actors from the scenes will be the next step to concretize the fellowship program in the coming months. Some anchor projects - numerous events as well as considerations for the promotion of new training centers - are already underway. The call for funding is expected in the summer, with the first jury decisions in the fall of 2021, so that artist support can begin as soon as possible. In the long term, Neue Künste Ruhr will also support the creation of new training and continuing education programs. Together with universities, research institutions and academies, further courses of study for the New Arts are to be developed. The Ministry of Culture and Science is also looking forward to hearing from potential partners from the region who are interested in cooperating with the Fellows from 2022 onwards.

All further information on the funding program will be published here soon.

By the summer of 2021, a development company will be founded with the partners Land NRW and Regionalverband Ruhr (RVR), which will guarantee the implementation of all goals and measures. It will serve as a contact point for young creatives for the workshops, sound studios, practice halls or testing grounds.

Artists participation

The New Arts Advisory Council

An advisory board consisting of a total of 16 creative minds from the various scenes in the Ruhr region is available to the project as a guide. The advisory board is in office for one year at a time, and the participants are appointed by the Ministry of Culture. There are four free places, for which all interested parties can apply by mail (, the advisory board appoints the additional members. The participants of the advisory board 2021 are:

Vesela Stanoeva, artist, scenographer, Dortmund
Matthias Krentzek, co-founder of the virtual reality festival Places, Gelsenkirchen
Jenny Patschovsky, chairwoman of Bundesverband Zeitgenössischer Zirkus, founder of Atemzug, Cologne
Sabeth Dannenberg, Artistin, Bochum
Annika Pacyna, DJ, Bochum
Christian Eggert, owner of the agency DACAPO Kultur Offensiv!, initiator Urbanatix & Open Space, Bochum
Matthias Frense
, artistic director and managing director, Ringlokschuppen Ruhr, Mülheim an der Ruhr
Frieda Frost, breakdancer, doctoral student at the Institute for Dance and Movement Culture at the Cologne Sports University
Zerkai Fenerci, artistic director Pottporus e.V. and Renegade, Herne
Ahmet Sisman, DJ, music manager, organizer, Third Space, Essen
Inga Marie Sponheuser, cultural manager and agent for diversity development, Bochum
Michael Eickhoff, Akademie für Theater & Digitalität, Dortmund
Kathrin Mädler, Intendantin Theater Oberhausen (2022/23)

Who are we?

About the Ministry of Culture and Science

The Ministry of Culture and Science shapes the framework for cultural diversity and scientific excellence in North Rhine-Westphalia. Isabel Pfeiffer-Poensgen has been Minister for Culture and Science of North Rhine-Westphalia since June 30, 2017. More information about funding programs and the ministry is available here.

Our cooperation partners:

About the Ruhr Regional Association

The 480 employees of the Ruhr Regional Association (RVR) are competent and experienced in regional planning and regional development, in the management of infrastructure projects such as the Route Industriekultur and Emscher Landscape Park, in the planning and expansion of the regional cycle path network, and in the maintenance and development of forests and green spaces. At the heart of the RVR's statutory mission is the well-being of the Metropole Ruhr - as a networker, coordinator, initiator, service provider or project sponsor. More information about the association here.