2023 has brought a plethora of ground-breaking artists whose practice extends beyond the confines of the typical gallery space. We have selected nine unmissable current and upcoming art installations from around the globe to visit this summer.

Bernar Venet in Grosvenor Square in London, UK

Situated at the compass points of Grosvenor Square, one of Mayfair's largest garden parks, Londoners will discover a quartet of large-scale Cor-Ten steel sculptures by Bernar Venet. These curled tendrils of rolled steel to sophisticated triangular geometry are currently on display as part of a collaboration between Waddington Custot and Art in Mayfair as New West End Company's most recent initiative. This exhibition provides a unique occasion to witness the masterpieces of a prominent artist of this calibre in open air.

This year marks the sixth decade of the artist's seminal career and the 60th anniversary of his iconic work 'Tas de charbon' created in 1963. This work in question unequivocally stands as a pioneering masterpiece, being the first ever to not have a fixed form, which spearheaded the start of his investigative practice. These sculptures loaned by the Venet Foundation survey the artist’s innovative approach to sculpting, each representing a concept of artistic concern whether it be "collapse", "accident" or using mathematical and scientific investigation. The line serves as both the point of origin and the fundamental subject matter that Venet has incorporated throughout the years. 

Image courtesy of Albertina Campbell

Bernar Venet at Grosvenor Square is on view through August 29, 2023

Lee Bae, Issu de feu (2023) in New York, USA

New York has always been an international cultural hub for artistic exchange. May has brought a celebration of Korean culture and heritage to the Rockefeller Center, New York. To coincide with this event, Johyun Gallery, a leading art gallery in Busan, Korea, presents a group exhibition titled ‘Origin, Emergence, Return’. The exhibition features over 70 works from three leading Korean artists across three generations- Park Seo Bo, Lee Bae and Jin Meyerson- who challenge the notion of abstraction through the use of unconventional materials.

This exhibition also comes with many firsts- it marks the  first time that Johyun Gallery has exhibited outside of Korea, also making Lee the first Korean artist to debut his site-specific outdoor sculpture in the Channel Gardens. Consisting of stacked charcoal and standing at colossal 12- feet high, Issu de feu (2023) towers over pedestrians. Having worked with charcoal for over thirty years, Lee continually pushes boundaries with the medium as Charcoal speaks to the very DNA of Korean society. It was through the reintroduction and the rediscovery of charcoal in Paris that the artist found that its uses were easily found in the natural world. "Through charcoal, I can reflect on the cultural background and the environment I grew up in", says the artist. At the core, much of the artist's work is an exploration into materiality, the spiritual and the physical world that surrounds us allowing an alternate interaction for audiences.

Image courtesy of the artist and Johyun Gallery

Lee Bae, Issu de feu (2023) as part of Origin, Emergence, Return. On view now through 26 July, 2023

Kimsooja, 자오선 Jaoseon (2023)  in Meridiano, Oaxaca, Mexico

A young gallery sits on the sandy plumes of the western coast of Oaxaca, Mexico. For Meridiano's initial exhibition opening, the work of Kimsooja, a conceptual artist from South Korea occupies the two gallery spaces. The artist has continued her practice across New York, Seoul, and Berlin for over four decades, addressing contemporary cultural, and political phenomena in our rapidly globalising world. 

Deductive Object – Bottari (2023) is a new work from the Deductive Object series that began in the early 1990s. The first space that visitors enter features a rock placed in the centre of Meridiano's square room, while the second space houses the ceremonial fire performance. Having discovered a rock during her stay in Puerto Escondido, Mexico, Kimsooja painted the rock matte black to create the visual depiction of a wrapped bundle, like the traditional Korean fabric (bottari) used in the artist's previous works. The concept of inactivity holds immense significance in artistic processes and formalistic practices.

Image courtesy of the artist and Meridiano

Kimsooja, 자오선 Jaoseon (2023) is on view at Meridiano, Oaxaca, Mexico

Hiroshi Sugimoto, Point of Infinity: Surface of Revolution with Constant Negative Curvature (2023), San Francisco, USA

San Francisco's skyline now boasts an impressive addition in the form of a new sculpture titled Point of Infinity: Surface of Revolution with Constant Negative Curvature (2023). The stainless steel monument designed by Hiroshi Sugimoto stands at an impressive height of 69 feet with a base of 23 feet, creating the illusion of infinity. It sits above a former water tank on Yerba Buena Island, San Francisco; the sculpture is the first of many public artworks commissioned by the Treasure Island Arts Program in partnership with the San Francisco Arts Commission, celebrating the city's commitment to public art and cultural development. 

Sugimoto used his exceptional skill in mathematics to incorporate a hyperbolic curve that suggests both infinity and eternity in the sculpture, a mindset that can launch a rocket into space. The sculpture, which costs $2 million, was installed last month as part of the new Infinity Point Park on the island, set to open to the public later this year. It is Sugimoto's first major work in the United States, and he was selected from over 495 other candidates who responded to an open call in 2017.

Sugimoto's creations have spanned across multiple domains, including design, calligraphy, theatre production, and architecture. His remarkable pieces have earned a place in the collections of prominent museums such as San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Metropolitan Museum, The Museum of Modern Art, New York, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and the Hirshhorn Museum.

Image courtesy of the San Francisco Arts Commission

Rachel Whiteread, "…And the Animals Were Sold” (2023) in Bergamo, Italy

For the sixth consecutive year, Galleria d'Arte Moderna e Contemporanea di Bergamo has commissioned an installation by the esteemed British contemporary artist Rachel Whiteread. The installation consists of sixty sculptures constructed from Sarnico stone and Zandobbio marble, extracted from quarries near Bergamo which blend seamlessly with the venue's architectural history. These sculptures have been purposefully spaced apart to invoke memories of social distancing during the covid-19 pandemic, which was especially challenging for the Bergamo community while celebrating the eventual return to proximity.

Whiteread works with a variety of industrial materials to create sculptures of everyday objects and architectural spaces. Her pieces vary in size and scale, ranging from small and intimate to grandiose and monumental. Whiteread incorporates found objects and materials such as plaster, concrete, resin, rubber, and metal. Her unique approach to sculpture has earned her a place as one of the most innovative artists of our time.

Image courtesy of Lorenzo Palmieri

Rachel Whiteread ‘…And the Animals Were Sold’ (2023) is on view until the 29 October 2023

Anselm Kiefer, Château La Coste, Aix-en-Provence, France

The German artist Anselm Kiefer explores universal questions surrounding areas of existence, belief, and meaning. His work encompasses all art forms, including large-scale works, sculptures, and installations that delve into epic territory, creating complex sculptural formations. Kiefer's new solo exhibition, currently on view at Château La Coste in Aix-en-Provence features five sculptures from the Frauen der Antike (Women of Antiquity) series honouring the unwavering and independent women of ancient history and mythology. The exhibition also showcases four recent landscape paintings, which blend Finnish mythology and German Romanticism. Kiefer uses written text to honour his inspirations and share his heritage with the wider audience.

Image courtesy of the artist

Anselm Kiefer at Château La Coste. On view until 3 September 2023

GRUPPENAUSSTELLUNG (2023) at Hauser & Wirth Somerset, UK

The French artist Camille Henrot is among 20 artists included in Hauser & Wirth's new group show GRUPPENAUSSTELLUNG which celebrates the Swiss heritage of the traditional Kunsthalle. The exhibition playfully showcases contemporary issues for a broad audience. Henrot's bronze sculpture Family of Men (2022) depicts the crushing power of a patriarchal society where interconnected, hybrid human forms scramble over one another, providing a thought-provoking image of power dynamics and the quest for growth and elevation.

Image courtesy of Hauser & Wirth

GRUPPENAUSSTELLUNG (2023), Hauser & Wirth Somerset, UK until 1 January 2024

Ugo Rondinone, Storm King Arts Centre, New York, USA

Ugo Rondinone, the New York based Swiss artist known for his famous colourful large-scale outdoor sculptures has never been limited to one medium. The New York State Council on the Arts made this outdoor presentation possible with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature. The Sun (2018) and The Moon (2021) are crafted from cast-bronze tree branches, meticulously shaped into circles. One sculpture is coated with silver leaf, while the other is gilded with gold. Both stand tall at over 16 feet and are positioned parallel to each other to resemble a window or gateway. Visitors will see the spectacular vistas of Schunnemunk and Storm King Mountains through them.

Rondinone's connection to the natural world is unparalleled. By situating The Sun and The Moon in Storm King's landscape, the connections between these works and nature further the dichotomy between the two celestial bodies.

Image courtesy of Esther Schipper Gallery

Ugo Rondinone, Storm King Arts Centre is on view until 13 November 2023

Antony Gormley, Critical Mass (2023) in Musée Rodin, Paris, France

The human form and space have been the catalyst for the British sculptor Antony Gormley's practice for over forty years. The upcoming exhibition Critical Mass at the iconic musée Rodin in Paris will feature key works by Gormley, showcasing his shared interest with Rodin in exploring the human form as subject matter. The centrepiece, Critical Mass II (1995) will feature an installation of sixty life-sized sculptures arranged in various configurations, leading to Rodin's The Gates of Hell. Gormley's Insider works will also be on display, along with four carefully chosen sculptures placed alongside Rodin's masterpieces. Over 200 of Gormley's workbooks will also be available for viewing, providing insight into his creative process.

Antony Gormley, Critical Mass (2023) is on view from 17 October 2023 to 03 March 2024