Having enjoying art since year 7, did GCSE Art and AS Art; never would have thought I would have visited that many art galleries/museum around the world to give you a list of quality art museums recommendations!
I kept on reminding myself that holiday is a luxury for anyone and that we shouldn’t big up our own mind just because we have travelled. Travelling should widen your horizon and expand your eyes for others while it is not something used as a way of showing off.
Visiting art gallery are on my top list to do if they are interesting enough to be on my list. And surprisingly, from my last few trips I have managed to visit one in each country…
Arken Museum of Modern Art, Copenhagen
Skovvej 100, 2635 Ishøj, Denmark
From any central station, take S line to Ishøj. Take the S train, line A towards Solrød/Hundige or line E towards Køge to Ishøj Station (this line doesn’t run on weekend btw), then take bus route 128 goes directly to the museum – it takes approx. 5 minutes. This bus is a circular route, so take it back at where you got off to get to the station.
You can also walk from Ishøj Station to Arken via the path system. This takes approx. 20 minutes.
I was torn between two contemporary art galleries, after some comparison and notes taken from tripadvisor, I have managed to convince my fellow travel buddies to go outside of Copenhagen with me and visit this infamous Arken Museum of Modern Art. It was an easy journey from Norroport station (absolutely, the best choice of staying location in Copenhagen!)
My visit was purely just to absorb what Danish art gallery has to offer and to my surprised not only would I see Ai Weiwei’s 12 zodiac work, I have also come across the exhibition of artist Gerda Wegener, whom was a famous Danish artist and its infamous story of its partner. And the recent movie called Danish Girl is literately based on this artist’s real life story. So it was overwhelming to have encountered her work; got to know her history better and you can associate some of the work with the movie as well. Did not regret making this trip out to Arken, which offers a combination of contemporary arts, even my non-art buddies enjoyed this visit.
Leeum, Samsung museum of Art, Seoul
60-16 Itaewon-ro 55-gil, Yongsan-gu, L5 Seoul, Korea 140-893. Opening hours 1030 to 1800.
Closed every Monday, January 1st, New Year’s and Chuseok holidays.
From Hangangjin Station (Subway Line 6) Exit 1, walk straight for 100m towards Itaewon. Make a right turn at the first alley, walk up the hill for about 5 minutes.
As much as little time I have in Seoul, I was keen to fit in this art gallery on my to do list. Not too sure why, but sense set me to visit at the time (haha). After visited the Mural art area in the morning, I opt for some more art works in the cold afternoon (probably best to be indoor right?) in this infamous Leeum, Samsung museum of Art.
You know, the mind-set that I have was European probably have the most art galleries of the world. So visiting one in Asia country was something exciting for me. I have been seeing the appearance of this sculpture many times on Instagram but taking a photo with your own camera seems like oh I have finally see it with my own eyes feeling. Frankly speaking, the modern art inside this gallery was somewhat pretty abstract, of course, even the definition of abstract can be quite vague in itself. Overall, I enjoyed that little strolled amongst the entire museum. And what I probably found most interesting was that some of its historical art are pretty similar to Chinese art.
Schloss Belvedere, Vienna
Prinz Eugen-Strasse 27, 1030 Wien, Austria
Get on the underground line U1 Sudtirolerplatz plus 15 minutes walking, would suggest using GPS for ease, Opening hours 10am to 6pm.
Finally saw The Kiss painting with my own eyes! I cannot emphasis this enough… Ever since I have studied Gustav Klimt’s work in my GSCE studies, I would not have one day think I will see this painting and I did! And what makes it really controversial was at that ancient period, people were more conserved on nudity art work or any work that portrait sexuality. And this piece of work, indeed, has become his famous piece. I wouldn’t say the piece was highly skilful like others of the same era, but something about this piece that would naturally draw people in.
Beside Klimt’s work, I did enjoyed a lot of other, Austrian artists’ work, still find oil painting a different level of art when compare to other medium. They have an exhibition of Impression but unfortunately, its not as great as the exhibition that I have seen in Musee d’Orsay in Paris.
Musèe d’Orsay, Paris
Rue de Lille 75343 Paris, France
You can reach this museum either via metro station Solférino or RER station Musée d’Orsay, then you will need a short walk to the actual museum. Opening hours are Tuesday to Sunday: 10.00 – 18.00. Thursdays until 21.30. If you have a Paris card, you have fast track access.
Note, if you buy 24 or48 hours card and visited the places you want to visit within the first or two days, this makes your museum/gallery visit much cheaper!
This art museum is ranked 10th globally but i didn’t come here for its name. I came here for its collection of work. By far Musee d’Orsay has my favourite work of Impressionists of all time. The period of what that I admired a lot at the time of my art studies. I didn’t expect to see majority of them at the time of visiting this museum, until I have reached to the Impressionists Section, it was on the 3rd level if I recall correctly that I saw works of Monet, Manet, Dagas.. Etc. What’s draws me to love this period of work, its the fact how the output produces a soft capture of the subject rather than details, the colour, the stroke.. The overall atmosphere that these art work offers. You may not need to have studied art to love this type of work. Regardless, whether you have had an art background or not, I would still advise anyone to go and visit this exhibition. And see what you intepret from these type of work.
Beside impressionist exhibtion, I saw a great selection of Van Gough’s work as well as admiring the interior of this gallery in itself which once was a train station turned into a gallery. Pretty amazing!
National Art Center, Tokyo
7 Chome-22-2 Roppongi, Minato, Tokyo 106-8558, Japan. Open daily 10am to 5:30pm, closed on Tuesday.
You can reach to this art center by taking metro to Roppongi station. Following the internal direction and will lead you to the exit that’s closest to the art museum. Another short walk away, you will be happily arrived at this art museum.
This art museum doesn’t have any permanent exhibition but instead it offers periodical exhibitions of various work. While I was there, there was an anniversary art show (which I don’t understand the title in Japanese, of course). While on the other floor, there was Rene Magritte’s exhibition and this is what I went for in the end. Rene Magritte, not surprisingly was another artist that I have studied in A-level and funny enough, in one coursework of mine, I have adopted his style of work and turn my self portrait into his work alike. It was quite interesting (as any other exhibition) to finally see works that I am used to seen in exhibition catalogue but now with my own pair of eyes. I can even identified the pieces that I have used in my coursework. I never expected to see his exhibition and in Japan!
In general, I love the interior and the building itself, look at the shape! The interior was really spacious, they have loads of arm chairs dotted around for visitors, as well as chairs by the windows. There were loads of lockers for visitor to use and lock their personal items which I find very considerate. I spent a few hours there and wished I could go to another art gallery/museum but Mori Museum was closed. Very enjoyed this art museum and its vibe.
Van Gough Museum, Amsterdam
Museumplein 6, 1071 DJ Amsterdam, Netherlands
We access this museum via foot as it was close to our hotel, in fact if I recall correctly, this museum is near the sign of Amsterdam, you get to kill two sights within one journey! This art museum opens daily 9am to 6pm, closes at 10pm on Friday.
We did queued a little to get into this art museum, to be honest with you, I didn’t do much research while going Amsterdam for a long weekend so when my friends suggested to go Van Gough museum, I have no objections to see his masterpieces with my own pair of eyes. Which I certainly enjoyed seeing, reading up on how he started, his history and how he got into painting landscape and his study of flowers which lead to his famous piece Sunflowers. I didn’t really admire his style of work when I was doing my art studies but yet, when you get to understand more of his background and how his work forms, I begin to appreciate his work a lot more than I used to.
The museum itself are divided into a few sections and levels, pretty big for one artist I would say. The museum were full of tourists, not surprised weren’t we, I guess the local would have probably visited this museum already. Though, what more can you ask for on a sunny day in Amsterdam, visiting art museum, came out and chill at the nearby park with a can of Coke. I would dearly recommend you to visit this gallery, very rare that I would buy an art catalogue but I did for Van Gough and I have said to myself from now on, I will build an art book collection of the museum or exhibitions that I have visited.
Oh and don’t forgot Musee d’Orsay has some pieces of Van Gough’s work too, if you like this artist, make sure you visit it too!
Museu Picasso, Barcelona
Carrer Montcada, 15-23, 08003 Barcelona, Spain
When I was there, I stayed at the Jaume I area where its nearest station is Jaume I, walk along the Carrer de la Princesa to reach it on your right hand side. Or like us, we did a little wander around the area before walking past it. This area has a lot of restaurants too, so its worth to plan your gallery visit along side with a meal after or before your art tour of Piccassso.
You know, I am not going to bored you, but Piccasso is again another artist that I have studied before, I guess when you have studied art for such a long period of time, it wouldn’t be a surprised with the amount of artists that I would have studied. Even when you visit art museum, you definitely would have take note of his work. Visiting to his museum has allow me to view his amazing pieces, transition from Classicism and Surrealism to Cublism. With the help of the audio guide, I have got to understand how his works were formed and what has influenced his transition from one type of work to another. I somehow lost a bit of my concentration with some of the sections within the gallery but nevertheless, I would recommend you to visit this gallery and understand his lifetime work and background.
Of course, Barcelona is not only home to Museu Picasso but nearby has Joan Miro, MACBA & MNAC etc. I need to go back and visit the contemporary art museum one day.
Royal Academy of Arts, London
Burlington House, Piccadilly, London W1J 0BD
Quickest access is either via Station Green Park (Jubliee line) or Piccadilly Circus (Piccadilly Circus), after a short walk from either station, you will reach to an building with loads of exhibition flag/banners display. There is it you have reach to RAA. One of my favourite art museum in London.
I didn’t know this art museum until when my A-level art tutor suggested to the whole class that we should visit its annual Summer Exhibition. When I did made that visit, I was overwhelmed by the wide range of art work that the exhibition has to offered and through that I have identified some RA artists like Allen Jones, David Hockney, Ken Howard etc. I would definitely recommend you to visit its Summer Exhibtion, if you are around in the Summer. With the price of one ticket, you get to see a vast quality of work from all categories. I remember I have fallen in love with Allen Jones’ painting when I first saw it there; the vibrant colour that he uses on his work; how neat this painting was.. Yet, with Ken Howard’s work, I love his landscape painting of London. How his brush stroke has created that blurred but yet enable you to know that scene.
I still remember the exhibition that RA has held for David Hockney – “A Bigger picture” (in 2012) was one of the best exhibitions I have seen in recent year and really glad that I have went to see it, even though I felt the ticket price was pretty steep.
And recently, there’s a really good quality exhibition called “Painting the Modern Garden : From Monet to Matisse”, yet again, I felt so happy to be able to visit this exhibition, to see the famous piece of Monet’s Water lilies. Can’t imagine which other art gallery be able to pull all these good works together to form a quality exhibition. The interior of the exhibtion hall have changed to fit different floral theme or type of work. It was brilliant!