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“Good Collection”

Baltimore Museum of Art
Ranked #6 of 229 things to do in Baltimore
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: The Baltimore Museum of Art (BMA) is home to an internationally renowned collection of 19th-century, modern, and contemporary art. Founded in 1914 with a single painting, the BMA today has 90,000 works of art-including the largest holding of works by Henri Matisse in the world.* The museum is currently undergoing an unprecedented $28 million renovation to provide visitors with a more welcoming environment and more imaginative and inspiring encounters with art. The BMA is remaining open throughout the multi-year project so that visitors can enjoy its outstanding selection of European and American painting and sculpture from the 17th through 20th centuries and the newly reinstalled Contemporary Wing with 14 galleries showcasing the art of our time. Two beautifully landscaped gardens display an array of 20th-century sculpture that is an oasis in the city. The museum's 100th anniversary will be celebrated in November 2014 with the reopening of the grand historic entrance designed by John Russell Pope and a beautiful new presentation of the museum's distinguished collection of American art. Subsequent reopenings include expanded galleries for the African and Asian art collections and a new learning and creativity center that will open in 2015. Since 2006, the BMA has eliminated general admission fees so that everyone can enjoy the power of art. * Many of the BMA's works by Matisse are part of a special exhibition traveling to museums in Indianapolis, Minneapolis, and San Antonio in 2013 and 2014. If you are visiting to see a specific artwork, please call the BMA Box Office to make sure it will be on view.
Leicester, North Carolina
Level Contributor
75 reviews
21 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“Good Collection”
Reviewed 17 June 2014

Great variety of works...saw 2 Monets and some other Impressionists' works. Our only suggestion is that there need to be more signs added for directions for turning, parking and entrance.

Visited June 2014
Thank Angierobrts
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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639 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
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English first
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Level Contributor
119 reviews
53 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 78 helpful votes
“A museum where people feel at home”
Reviewed 12 June 2014

At first glance the BMA seems more intimidating than the average US art museum built in the first half of the 20th Century. There must be a hundred across the US with the almost identical neo-classical facade of heavy tapered ionic or doric columns, blind windows and a massive pediment. The BMA is heavier than the average and does not raise hopes for the contents. In fact, once inside you are hosted by staff that smile, chat, act, shake your hand, explain their lives and generally lead you to understand why Baltimore calls itself 'charm city'. At the moment, half of the museum is closed for renovation, however, what's available is delightful, mostly a very good collection of impressionist painting, post impressionist and even a very good collection of German expressionist paintings. The big hitter exhibit by the Cone sister collectors is on tour. The sisters were spectacular collectors and built a personal friendship with Henri Matisse, building a collection of more than 400 of his works. I have seen the collection on tour and when it returns to Baltimore in October I recommend you visit the museum and see the rest of a very large collection that is now in storage during renovation.

But more important, I recommend you visit the museum for its interesting staff. From the Louvre in Paris to the National Gallery in Washington, D.C. one either encounters staff sleeping at their posts (the Louvre) or watching the patrons with suspician (other galleries), not so at the BMA. A question to staff may engage you in a conversation about their favorites, advice about where to go in Baltimore or more. On one occasion I called my companion to see a pointilist painting and the staff member came over to say he loved it too. He said, he was a painter and admired how much work that was. As we prepared to leave the gallery I asked for directions to the Walters Gallery. The staff person asked me to wait a minute while she printed a map and directions.

I urge visitors to consider the museum a metaphor for all of the wonderful experiences they are likely to have when interacting with Baltimorans. They are truly charming.
There is parking beside the museum. The only down side is no cafe for just coffee or tea in the museum currently.

Visited June 2014
2 Thank Robert W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Arlington, Virginia
Level Contributor
35 reviews
13 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Fabulous Collection”
Reviewed 8 June 2014

This is one of the finest collections I've viewed. There are wonderful mosiacs, fine art and sculpture by well known artists and everything is displayed in beautifully architectural rooms. A lovely restaurant is attached so plan to have some lunch.

Visited September 2013
Thank Cheryl B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Somers Point, New Jersey
Level Contributor
341 reviews
121 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 104 helpful votes
“Great art museum in the Charm City”
Reviewed 2 June 2014

What a jewel of an art museum and the admission is free. The cafe serves a wonderful lunch for a reasonable price.

Visited June 2014
Thank NittanyLion70
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
36 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 76 helpful votes
“Better for Solo Visit...Worth a Trip”
Reviewed 31 May 2014 via mobile

Overall this is a nice museum with interesting art pieces. I like how the gallery transitions from more traditional portraits and "art" to more contemporary and colorful pieces. Nice and spacious, and never felt overcrowded. I enjoyed the contemporary wing most of all, but the other wings also have good conversation pieces. I would say it is a fun museum for all ages, as there are several interactive areas for play and reflection. Though there are not a lot of kid-specific items, so I would say a more pre-teen crowd and older would enjoy the museum more than younger kids. I would suggest however, that greater instruction or notification be given as to what pieces are interactive and which are not. It seems to vary from room-to-room, and there is no signage really indicating which is which. So don't be alarmed if you get a few firm words from security for interacting with something that turns out NOT to be interactive. Probably best to ask before assuming. Though there is construction in progress, this does not impact your experience, as there is ample signage to direct you to the temporary entrance.. I've recently visited twice, once with just two people, and again with a larger group of us. My two person visit was pleasant and relaxing. The group visit, well...there seemed to be a variety of rules that seemed to apply and change randomly regarding what we could bring into the museum as far as bags and what we couldn't. And though we saw other people with bags much bigger than ours walking around, we were forced to check out bags at the front. So not sure why some standards apply to some but not all. Once we got past the confusion from security and miscommunication, we were able to enjoy our visit despite the rough start, but it did put a damper on the group spirit. SO just a word of warning...if you are going with a group of friends, apparently you can't just show up. I was told you must coordinate with the museum at least 6 weeks in advance. Not sure what group size starts this requirement, but despite not being part of a tour or school or anything like that, its probably best to check with them first so you won't run into entry problems which may spoil your outing.

Also, there is an outdoor sculpture garden that is a cool spot take pictures and check out the interesting structures. You can access this area directly from outside and don't even have to go through the main museum.

Overall I do think it is a nice museum, and since its free, definitely a worthwhile trip. Ample street parking (metered) and parking lot parking (fee) is available for a small fee.

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

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