The Emscherkunstweg is a public art collection along the Emscher. The cooperation project is implemented by Urbane Künste Ruhr, the Emschergenossenschaft and the Regionalverband Ruhr and is under the patronage of Ina Brandes, Minister for Culture and Science of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia. The public art collection emerged from the temporary exhibition format Emscherkunst, which has accompanied the Emscher conversion by the Emschergenossenschaft since 2010. Emscherkunst was initiated on the occasion of the RUHR.2010 Capital of Culture and subsequently continued as a triennial. While many works of art remained permanently at the site in 2010, mainly temporary works were created in 2013 and 2016, each for an exhibition period of three and a half months. Since 2019, the Emscherkunstweg has been a permanent sculpture trail and thus a sustainable exhibition format for the region. New works of art will gradually be added to the existing works. The extension is being designed by Britta Peters, artistic director of Urbane Künste Ruhr, together with curator Marijke Lukowicz.
The Emscherkunstweg is funded by the Ministry of Culture and Science of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia.