Founded by artist Joep van Lieshout in 2008, the Artist Driven Playground Brutus is host to massive, challenging performances, and group and solo exhibitions. With a mission to offer artists time, space and freedom to experiment at a massive scale. Next to 6000m2 of exhibition spaces and a sculpture garden, Brutus offers a residency and a grant. Brutus consists of 2 foundations: Brutus Space and Brutus Base. Brutus Base presents all projects and activities related to the work of Atelier Van Lieshout. Brutus Space does all projects and activities related to other artists.

Brutus comes to life in the Rotterdam port area

Brutus is a cross between a maze and a time machine, a bomb shelter and a launch pad, a laboratory and an industrial ruin, a cabinet of curiosities and a think tank. Featuring a grand total of 6,000 square metres of exhibition space, it is also one of the largest contemporary art institutions in the Netherlands. A global revolution of the imagination is being prepared in the former port warehouses in the M4H area in west Rotterdam.

Artists will lead this revolution. At Brutus they are given complete freedom to create their dreams and visions – no matter how strange or even insane. Brutus enables exhibits other museums don’t because they’re too big, too unwieldy, too noisy, too daring or too difficult. At Brutus there are minimal restrictions to ensure maximum, unimpeded creativity. This results in outsized installations, theatre performances, film screenings and exuberant parties.

The themes explored at Brutus touch everyone’s lives – from climate change to migration, from social security to power perversion. Visitors are invited to wander through the complex, participate and voice opinions. Here, the distinctions between art connoisseur and layman, self-taught artist and established artist, forklift driver and professor are erased. The motto ‘everyone is an insider’ applies.

Brutus was founded in 2008 by artist Joep van Lieshout and was then called AVL Mundo. In 2023, the organization split into two independent foundations: Brutus Space and Brutus Base. Brutus Space is dedicated to other artists’ projects and activities. Brutus Base presents all the projects and activities related to the work of Atelier Van Lieshout.
© Brutus
© Brutus


Sanne ten Brink


Heleen Kosse


Henny Schoonewelle


Alec Kakisina


Geke Schalkwijk


Anastasia Esik


Alexander Ramselaar


Brutus Prize

The art world is dominated by cuddliness and white museum galleries. The Brutus Prize was established to encourage the production of unconventional art by quirky artists. The prize, made available by Joep van Lieshout, consists of a cash prize of €4,000 and a sculpture, sometimes in combination with a solo exhibition in Brutus Space. The prize will be awarded during the finissage of Wild Summer of Art. Previous winners were Jeroen Jongeleen (NL, 1966), Axel (NL, 1949) and Helena van de Kraan (CZ, 1940-2020), Priscilla Fernandes (PT, 1981), Wapke Feenstra (NL, 1959) and most recently Ossip (NL, 1952).
The prize puts (relatively) unknown makers in the spotlight who are difficult to place within the regular museum practice, and that bears fruit. Jeroen Jongeleen, whose exhibition Running in Circles was named the best exhibition of 2021, is a good example of an unknown mid-career artist whose career was boosted got by the award. Almost all of the work shown at Brutus Space was acquired by Museum Voorlinden and Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, and Jongeleen subsequently received exhibitions at Upstream Gallery and Harlan Levy Gallery.
Ossip, most recent Brutus Prize © Alessia Talò
Ossip, most recent Brutus Prize © Alessia Talò

Brutus Lab

Brutus Space has a workspace in architect Jan van Teeffelen's former villa at Keileweg 14, part of the Brutus complex. It is an artist-run place where young talents can live, work and/or exhibit. The program accommodates up to four to five artists, for a period of six to 12 months. Former users of the Brutus Lab include Neo Matloga (ZA, 1993), Carlijn Kingma (NL, 1991), Joseph Thabang Palframan (GB), Riley Harmon (US, 1987), Kasey Short (US), Jasper Griepink (NL, 1988), Wessel Verrijt (NL, 1992), Shimon Kamada (JA, 1997), Jason Page (US, 1990) and Yuxuan Cui (CH, 1994). Current users are Marcos Kueh (ID, 1995), Jemima de Jonge (NL, 2001), Alexandra Philips (US, 1988), Matias Salgado (AR,1998) and Ouassilla Arras (FR, 1993).
Alexandra Phillips © Salih Kilic
Alexandra Phillips © Salih Kilic

Working at Brutus

Become Brutus Volunteer!

For the upcoming exhibitions, Brutus is looking for enthusiastic volunteers. Under guidance of the floor manager you help with public guidance, ticket sales and information provision. Brutus is open from Thursday to Sunday.
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Become a Brutus intern!

We have room for an independent intern, preferably at HBO or WO level. At Art Institution Brutus there is a lot to learn as an intern. What your internship will look like also depends on what you want (or need) to learn. During your internship, you will come in contact with various facets of an art institution such as communication, programming and production.
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Rent a space

Brutus lends itself to complete your (business) event with a raw edge. The former port warehouse of 600m2, asks you to think out of the box and is not meant for 'the weak'. Our complex has both indoor and outdoor spaces that will excite your company with changing exhibitions. We would love to think with you to make your corporate party, birthday or event unforgettable at our Brutus Playground.

For more information, contact Alec Kakisina at alec@brutus.nl
Rent a space © Brutus
Rent a space © Brutus


Christine de Baan
Majel Blonden
Trish & Jan de Bont
Lobke Broos
Joseph van Caldenborgh
Nacho Carbonell
Aric Chen
Chantal van Erven Dorens
Renee Drake
Joost Ector
Fleur Groenendijk
Lief Heylen
Patrick van 't hoff
Dennis Albada Jeigersma
Folkert de Jong
Wilfried Lentz
Han Nefkens
Julian Oggel
Suzanne Oxenaar
Wim Pijbes
Maria Roosen
Albert Schuitemaker
Piet & Sandra van der Slikke-Swelheim