This collection of art from Solomon Guggenheim, is housed in an iconic Frank Lloyd Wright building on the east side of Central park. The Collections includes works by Gaugain, Cezanne and Degas to name a few.
The Guggenheim Museum - established in 1939 and designed by famous architect Frank Lloyd Wright - is famous not only for its collection of Impressionist and Modern Art and revolving temporary exhibitions, but even more so for its unique architecture with a visitor ramp, continously circling to a skylight on top of the building - like the shell of a snail. The museum is located in the Upper East Side neighboorhood, near the eastern fringe of Central Park.
We visited June 14th. 3 galleries closed, 1 was of school children's work, the other work was pretty much awful. I have visited many galleries around the world, but this is poor in comparison. The building is fantastic, but $25 each entry is ridiculous, I would rather have given the money to charity. There is 2 hour free admission on 1 evening a week, try before you buy!
My niece wanted to visit the Guggenheim so I added it to our Go Select Pass. It was the last of the six attractions we visited, we had already been to MOMA and the Metropolitan Art Museum, both of which I found extremely impressive. Not so the Guggenheim. I'll admit that I am not a fan of modern art but even so the collection here is not impressive. The special exhibition of Christopher Wool was displayed going up the circular ramp, like much modern art I found it to be perplexing as to why it was considered art at all.
The one exhibit I was interested in seeing, Frank Lloyd Wright and a tribute to his Usonian House and Pavilion, was disappointing, not much there and housed in the museum's basement. The building housing the Guggenheim is a Frank Lloyd Wright design but it is not his familiar prairie style. The design of the building is very modern, completed in 1959, and like many of his other structures does not utilize the interior space well, there's not as much display space as you would think from the outside.
The permanent collection has some familiar artists-Picasso, Manet, Monet, Degas but the collection is not deep enough to justify the $22 admission fee.
I was much more impressed with the architecture of the Guggenheim museum than with its collection. The white curvy building was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright at the express demand of Solomon T. Guggenheim, a businessman and art lover whose private collection had grown to include an amazing amount of modern and contemporary works of art. Wright spent about 15 years working on the museum's unique design and when the museum finally opened in 1959, both Wright and Guggenheim had sadly passed away. The museum's initial collection has grown over the years thanks to several donations made by private collectors. The museum is not too big so it's easy to visit, but it also means that only a fraction of the collection is on display. There was a special Christopher Wool exhibition when we were there that took up most of the showcasing space along the spiralling ramp and, quite frankly, I thought his art was a little boring. However, there was a special Kandinsky exhibition that was much more fascinating. To make the experience more complete, we stopped for lunch at The Wright, the museum's restaurant (http://www.thewrightrestaurant.com/). It was slightly overpriced, but the food and service were outstanding.
Admission to the Guggenheim costs $22 for adults. The museum is open daily from 10:00 am to 5:45 pm (closed on Thursdays), with late nights on Saturdays. If you're traveling on a budget, you might want to drop by on Saturday nights from 5:45 pm to 7:45 pm to take advantage of the "pay as you wish" special.
For some reason, when i looked on the Guggenheim website, I was under the impression there was a more or less equal mix of modern and more classic style art. We went on a rainy day and the place was pretty busy. The main gallery is a spiral ramp and was lined with modern art exhibits from a Japanese artist. Pretty much incomprehensible for me. Two posts, one painted red and one white, with big nails pounded into it all over. That's art? How? There were one or two things I liked but mainly it was really not our thing. There was one small gallery with a couple dozen Impressionist and post-Impressionist paintings. One. That's it. Another room was filled with childrens' artwork. Colourful but no, not my thing. It was a big disappointment but your mileage may vary. If you like modern and installation art, you will probably love it.
The Guggenheim overall left me cold. It costs about 25 dollars to get in and there really isn't an extensive collection on display that we could tell. There are two single-user toilets on each floor by the elevators. The cafe is small and difficult to get in and find a place to stand let alone sit. The Wright Restaurant next to it requires reservations though you can eat at the bar. The food there is expensive and very very fancy/gourmet. Not to most people's tastes, I wouldn't think.
The building is interesting, but you can look at that from the outside.
Try and go to the Guggenheim without much in your hands, as the cloak room is a hassle and they allow handbags in but not backpacks or satchels. Also wander around some of the side annexes as the art there can be really worthwhile, unusual and different but my visit today on a Saturday at 4pm meant I had a whole room to myself to ponder although the main lobby was busy.
The Guggenheim was easily my favorite of the New York Museums we hit. While I was there, they had up a show called Moving Pictures. There was alot of video art and my favorite exhibit was this little 8 inch tall hologram of an old woman sitting in a rocking chair telling a story. It was in this dark corner and was just magical. Very hip and easily viewable. I didn't feel like I was missing everything as I did at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Also, the amazing architectural design was done by none other than Frank Lloyd Wright. Another reason in itself to visit.
As a side note, you can also buy a city pass there for a discounted price that includes the Circle Line Cruises, Empire State Building, the other museums and a few other Tourist spots.
If your going to visit one museum in NY, make it this one. Not only do they have spectacular atr displays inside, they also have a spectacular bui;ding in which to house them in.
Make sure you read the directions as we got lost whilst trying to find this place.
The design (Frank Lloyd Wright, 1959) of this modern art museum is controversial, but in my opinion beautiful. The Guggenheim houses paintings by Picasso, Modigliani, Kandinsky, Chagall and Monet among others. Unfortunately when we visited in December 2001, there was a temporary exhibition and most of the permanent collection was stored in the basement at that time.
As we were in NYC with our art college, it was expected that we should visit at least one gallery during our stay. We chose the Guggenheim as some people I was travelling with enjoyed the Bilbao one, and in my opinion, I think that the time we spent in NY Guggenheim would have been better spent elsewhere.
I can appreciate art, I studied it, but the exhibits at the time we visited were, in a word, rubbish. I did not pay all that money to get in and just look at some flies stuck to the wall (seriously thats what one of the "pieces" was). At least at the Tate Modern in London if you don't like it then you haven't wasted your money.
The best part of the Guggenheim for me was a coca cola and a hotdog from the stall outside.
There are buildings, which attract thousands of visitors not merely by their values which can be found in them, but rather because of their astonishing, amazing exterior.
One of them is the most special building of New York, the building of the Guggenheim Museum looking out on Central Park.
The American master, Frank Lloyd Wright gives the visitors not a daily architectural experience.
Curved lines border it, inside a spiral ramp curling around the central atrium defines the route of the visit. Entering the seashell we may be ready for a journey moving downwards.
The museum lacks the traditional exhibitor walls, they are replaced by a single continuous curved wall.
The building also has a huge glass dome, which is pouring plenty of light into this round museum, which hosts a very beautiful, modern artistic collection.