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“Amazing Gallery”

National Gallery of Art
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Renegade Group Tour of the National Gallery of Art
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Owner description: One of the world's greatest art museums is comprised of two buildings: one holds paintings from the 13th through the 18th centuries and the other exhibits modern art.
Richmond, Virginia, United States
Level Contributor
40 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Amazing Gallery”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 20 May 2014

Everything about the art in the gallery is nothing short of awe-inspiring. Works of art that everyone has seen in books since we were kids is right in front of you. Even though it was packed, you could find parts of the gallery where there was a lot of room to breathe and take it all in. Bring your lunch - your held captive with the lunch options in the gallery. Highly expensive, not great quality, and practically zero options...but then again, you're not there for the food.

Visited May 2014
1 Thank Julie R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Tustin, California
Level Contributor
476 reviews
295 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 468 helpful votes
“Great museum; set aside lots of time: you won't be sorry”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 20 May 2014

To have this much great art for free, well, that’s a top rating right there. There’s a West Building (1941) and an East Building (1978), each having cool architectural aspects and lots of space on multiple floors of galleries. I would budget at least two hours for this, but for art lovers that may not be enough time.

The West Building is my favorite, with a huge number of paintings and sculpture from the 13th – 20th centuries on the Main Floor, and older artifacts and artwork on the Ground Floor. The collection of late-medieval (religious) artwork is extensive, and the same goes for European Renaissance artwork (e.g., Dutch/Flemish masters and other academy painting). There are also excellent examples of Hudson River School paintings, French and American impressionism, and numerous others by noteworthy artists such as Sargent, Gainsborough, Modigliani, Whistler, Homer and Picasso.

The East Building specializes in modern and contemporary artwork and is able to display very-large-scale, changing exhibitions. For me, these artworks are hit or miss, but I always stroll through anyway to see if something might pleasantly surprise me. There are five levels in this building, and some of the installations are so huge that they need to be viewed from at least one level to get the full impact. When I was there recently, there was a giant mobile hanging from the ceiling (worth a couple of photos), a circular array of what looked to be giant shards of flagstone, and piles of rocks that “went through” the windows. Uh … okay, whatever.

Both buildings have areas that can feature temporary touring exhibits; some modern, some not.

Overall, I would recommend this as a “must-see” museum. Budget 90% of your time for the West Building and see the East Building if you can fit it in.

Note 1: the East Building is undergoing renovation that entails partial closure. Reopening expected in 2016.

Note 2: Check out the sculpture garden too: mildly interesting, and worth a stroll on a nice day. In the winter, bring your ice skates.

Visited April 2014
1 Thank Jim L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
121 reviews
61 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 64 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 May 2014

I wish I had know how fabulous this museum was before we went to D.C....I would have planned to spend more time there! We only had time to see part of the West building, but it was fantastic! Next time I'm in D.C., this will be my first stop! Excellent museum, but allow several hours if you want to see it all!

Visited May 2014
Thank TheBoss99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Puget Sound, WA
Level Contributor
75 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 May 2014

This place is huge and you can't do it all at one time. To be in the presence of Renior, Rembrant, VanEck etc. is awesome. While being overwhelmed by the art on the walls, be sure to take in the building itself.
I found the gift shops to have interesting items and be agreeably priced

Visited May 2014
Thank 65stang
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mumbai (Bombay), India
Level Contributor
21 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“Very good”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 May 2014 via mobile

Great collections. Beautiful places... And I still can't believe it but it's free!! That's the best part about Washington. Most museums are free. So if you are a novice at understanding art, this is the city to be in. You can have the experience at your own pace and enjoy yourself!

Visited May 2014
Thank deu0505
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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