This large, modern museum shows why the Southwest offers more than just beautiful natural attractions.
The spacious design of the Phoenix Art Museum is as impressive as its balanced collection of fine classic and modern art. The large museum houses more than 17,000 works of art. The whole family can easily spend hours browsing the paintings, photos, garments, armory, miniature rooms, sculptures, theater, library and art store. One of the exhibitions covers the cultural history of Arizona and the greater Southwest.
The regional art museum’s roots are in the early 1900s, but the present building opened in 1959. With 285,000 square feet (26,500 square meters) of exhibition space it is one of the largest arts institutions in the Southwest. The nine curatorial departments include American, European, Asian, and contemporary and modern art, as well as fashion and photography. You’ll also find great city views from some corners of the museum.
Works by Monet, Kahlo and Picasso are some of the treasures you’ll find in the collection that makes this museum a world-class institution. Admire garments by great designers such as Dior, visit the photo gallery, or check out Samurai and World War II weaponry. Don’t miss the dark Firefly room with its sparkling lights. Rest your feet in the art house cinema or by the fountain in the sculpture garden. The adjoining café offers quality organic treats.
Pick up a Scavenger Hunt or a KidPack to discover the art displays with your children and don’t forget to take them to the miniature furniture collections in the Thorne Rooms. The themed PhxArtKids Gallery teaches kids how to think about art and explore color. The museum offers teen activities on select Wednesdays and Fridays.
Follow North Central Avenue from downtown to reach the museum. It’s open from Wednesday to Sunday. Children under 6 don’t pay admission and everyone enjoys free entry, with voluntary donation, late on Wednesdays and the first Friday night of every month. Ollie the Trolley will drop you off at the museum during the festive First Fridays arts walk, which also includes open-air concerts and dining throughout the city.