BMW Art Guide by Independent Collectors

A Brush Against Nature

by Nicole Büsing and Heiko Klaas

In form of short texts, the authors of the BMW Art Guide by Independent Collectors highlight and explore a range of topics that make the world of collecting so versatile and exciting. Here on the blog, we are happy to present these Shorties one by one that complement the guide.

In the text below, Nicole Büsing and Heiko Klaas take a look at a successful symbiosis: art and nature. No matter if in a tropical or rather moderate climate, this relationship seems to be flourishing, bringing out a new side in one another. Read on to find out more about how art and nature reflect each other and about some truly spectacular sculpture parks.

Art and nature complement each other well. Thus, for this edition of the BMW Art Guide by Independent Collectors we included additional private sculpture parks. After all, works of art in castle gardens and landscaped parks have a long tradition. Noble houses since the Renaissance commissioned artisans to create mythological figures or complex water fountains for their parks, often by the most famous artists of their time. And one can still find fine examples of commissioned works by castle owners today. The von Reden family regularly invites contemporary artists to their castle garden in the Weser Uplands of Germany to create site-specific sculptures. Marika Wachtmeister developed an equally convincing concept for rotating sculpture exhibitions around the area of her Castle Wanås, in southern Sweden. Exploring these kinds of places is particularly exciting. The visitor ventures, often with map in hand, on a kind of sculptural scavenger hunt. One brushes directly and immediately against nature, an experience often reflected in the works of art themselves. This functions best when artists have engaged with the characteristics of a place over a long period. Such a situation transpires on the grounds of the Basel collector John Schmid, who invites artists to the former convent Schoenthal and offers them time and peace to develop a work of art fitting the place. Or the Brazilian Bernardo Paz, who has created an ideal place of peaceful retreat in his tropical landscape park, Inhotim. He gives artists carte blanche permission to undertake daring aesthetic experiments. In more temperate Europe climes, one finds the sculpture park of Caldic Collectie, in the city of Wassenaar, in the Netherlands. Here Joop van Caldenborgh has forged a convincing harmony of sculptures and landscape on approximately forty acres—a constellation that triggers the joy of discovery for visitors as well as for the collector himself.

The journalist couple Nicole Büsing and Heiko Klaas have been writing freelance art journalism and art criticism since 1997 for a variety of national and international art magazines and newspapers.

Insiders (67)

Wilhelmina Jewell Strong - Sparks

Founder of BiTHOUSE Projects - BAAR Art Journey


Collector behind the ARNDT Collection

Sandra Guimarães

Director of Museum of Contemporary Art Helga de Alvear

Grazyna Kulczyk

Founder of Muzeum Susch


Interview with Georgie Pope and Eleonora Sutter, Co-founders

Kamiar Maleki

Director at VOLTA

Gallery Weekend Berlin 2022

Tokini Peterside

Founder and Director, ART X Lagos


Founding Director of the Athens Biennale

Boris Ondreička

Artistic Director of viennacontemporary

Maribel Lopez

Director of ARCO

David Gryn

Founder and Director of Daata

Fondation Beyeler Audiovisual Broadcast

Fondation Beyeler and Nordstern Basel present Dixon x Transmoderna

Gary Yeh

Founder of ArtDrunk and Young Collector

WATCH: The Best of the BMW Art Guide

Where will you travel next to explore art?

Maike Cruse

2020 Gallery Weekend Berlin

Touria El Glaoui

Founding Director of 1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair

Johann König

Messe in St. Agnes

PArt - Producers Art Platform

A crisis initiative to help artists directly affected by the pandemic

Barbara Moore

CEO of Biennale of Sydney

Unique Collector’s Item

by Independent Collectors

Alix Dana

Fair Director at Independent

When Collectors are Able to Commission

by Nicole Büsing and Heiko Klaas

Juliet Kothe and Julia Rust

Initiators of Collection Night, Berlin

Marie-Anne McQuay

Curator of Wales in Venice, 58th Venice Biennale 2019

Dorothy and Herb Vogel

Two extraordinary art collectors

Heather Hubbs

Director at NADA

Every Art Collection Needs Space

by Nicole Büsing and Heiko Klaas

Collecting Art with François Pinault

Rudolf Stingel at Palazzo Grassi

A Common Ground

by Silvia Anna Barrilà

Caroline Vos

Director at Amsterdam Art Weekend

Hidden Collections

by Nicole Büsing and Heiko Klaas

Nicole Berry

Executive Director of The Armory Show

Daniel Hug

Fair Director at Art Cologne

The Role of the Art Fair

by Silvia Anna Barrilà

Peter Bläuer

Director at LISTE

Ilaria Bonacossa

Director of Artissima

Excessiveness, the Latent Danger of Collecting Art

by Independent Collectors

Jo Stella-Sawicka

Artistic Director at Frieze

Florence Bourgeois

Director at Paris Photo

Where Artists Can Work More Playfully

by Christiane Meixner

Specifically Commissioned

by Silvia Anna Barrilà

Manuela Mozo

Executive Director of UNTITLED, ART Miami and San Francisco

Important Museums and Private Collections

by Christiane Meixner

Susanna Corchia

Director of the Barcelona Gallery Weekend

Emilia van Lynden

Artistic Director at Unseen, Amsterdam

Carlos Urroz

Director at ARCOmadrid

Shoe Smudges Streaked Across the White Walls

by Christiane Meixner

Amanda Coulson

Director at VOLTA Basel

Douwe Cramer

Director at Singapore Contemporary

Art and Architecture – Attractive Allies

by Nicole Büsing and Heiko Klaas

Jo Baring

Curator of Sculpture Series, Masterpiece London

Bidders and Buyers

by Christiane Meixner

Anne Vierstraete

Managing Director at Art Brussels

Nanna Hjortenberg

Director at CHART

The Crucial Role of the New

by Independent Collectors

Makers and Believers

On Art History’s Most Famous Patrons

The Past is Back

And collectors are buying it up

Are Artists the Better Curators?

On the diminishing boundary between professions in the art world

The Digital Museum

On the importance of the museum’s web presence

The Man in the Middle

On the curator’s private and public engagements

A Private Matter?

On the importance of physical space for the value of art

Off the Wall

How museums contribute to the worth of artworks

Where to Go Next?

The fragmentation of Manhattan’s gallery scene

To Buy or Not to Buy

Collectors on their experiences of letting an artwork slip away

How to Pass On a Passion

On long-term challenges for new private museums