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New Museum

Make sure you don’t miss this highlight of the Lower East Side’s thriving contemporary art scene, which has an interior as remarkable as its iconic exterior.

Include the New Museum on a tour of the Lower East Side’s many fascinating galleries. This bold contemporary art museum dominates the surrounding cityscape. Wander its various exhibition areas and see paintings, sculptures and installations by cutting-edge artists from all over the world.

As its name suggests, the New Museum prides itself on offering highly current work, often created by emerging artists. However, the museum itself has actually been established as a must-see for art lovers for some time now. Stand outside and you will soon see why it drew so much attention for its architecture when it opened in 2007. Look up and you could easily worry that the building is going to fall on you. The eight floors of the gleaming white building are each slightly out of line with the others, giving the effect of an unbalanced tower of blocks. At night, lights shine out from between the joints of some of the levels, making the place look even more striking.

Walk through the doors and see how the characteristic look of the building is carried through to the interior space. Hear a talk in the basement auditorium, which is sometimes described as a “white box.” Here, the walls, floor, celling and even the chairs are gleaming white. Head up to the galleries to see work by the likes of Carol Rama, Kaari Upson and Elaine Cameron-Weir.

When you’ve finished at the New Museum, explore the many other great sights the area has to offer. On a Saturday, head to Hester Street Fair to pick up vintage clothes and tasty food. Check out one of the other galleries in the area. Find Salon 94 Bowery just a few steps away, or visit the nearby Sargent’s Daughters. Both regularly receive great reviews for their diverse and frequently changing exhibitions.

Visit the New Museum any day except Monday, when it is closed. Check the program for evening events, which are held on Thursdays. You do need to pay to access the exhibitions, but if you don’t want to go in, it is still worth visiting just to see the striking building.


Guide to Exploring New Museum


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