National Gallery of Art

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4th St NW, Washington, DC, USA
(202) 737-4215

National Gallery of Art Washington Reviews

Africancrab Africanc…
773 reviews
Outstanding French Impressionist Art Jul 25, 2012
This was one of the last museums we visited in Washington. with less than a week to our Canadian travel, I had to choose between the National Archives and the National Art Gallery. Well I chose the Art Gallery because I wanted to see the permanent collection of European art house in the west wing of the enormous gallery. That aside, the many American sculptures, paintings and decorative art that have shaped the American Art world. Lucky for me, at the end of the day, we were able to even visit the National Archives.

It was an awfully hot day in Washington (well all summer has been, record high temperatures this year). It was nice to get indoors with my 5 month old son and 12 year old daughter. We started at the West wing to be sure to cover the European Impressionist art with the mind to go to the East wing when we were done. The gallery is currently show casing the works of George Bellows in the main floor galleries.

The collection of art include the French impressionist painters and renown artists like Auguste Renoir, Claude Monate, Francois Boucher to mention but a few. I enjoyed the marble sculptures and Italian pieces. Opened in 1937 when the generous George Mellon made a donation towards its opening. Much of it was actually the West wing until 1978 when the East wing was opened. Later on, a Sculpture Garden was added (check out my review on the National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden).

The museum is located on the National Mall, but is not part of the Smithsonian Institution Museums. The art is easy to view as they are organized according to time periods and by countries. Most of the art is on the main floor and flows from one section to another. We did not spend much time on the Bellows exhibition because I spent more time going through the French and Italian paintings (smile!)
George Bellows Exhibition on the M…
Claude Monet, Oild on Canvas 1873.…
Auguste Renoir, Oil on Canvas 1872…
Francois Boucher, 1750. Oil on Can…
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es1418 es1418
11 reviews
Free, Fun and Educational! Jul 09, 2011
Yes, you read correctly. This wonderful museum is absolutely free. Do you like the old masters? Then visit the West gallery and view wonderful artwork from the Byzantine era until about the 20th century. Are you in the mood for something more modern? Then take the underground passage to the East gallery and prepare to be dazzled.

Both galleries have nice cafes and gift stores, and you can easily spend all day strolling through them.

Tips: Go to an information desk and get a map and a event schedule. Tours are offered every few hours, and I suggest you take one - they're very informative. Go in the morning and you'll likely be part of a tour that's sparsely attended, and you'll have the docent practically all to yourself. It’s like having your own personalized VIP tour! :)
Miranda-Maas Miranda-…
144 reviews
Beautiful Museum Apr 25, 2009
I really love art so if there's an artmuseum in a city i try to visit it. This museum is very nice to visit even if you're not really into art. It's free so it's very nice to walk in and see if you like it. If you don't like it, you just leave again. I really loved this museum. I didn't see all sections in the museum because not everyone in our group likes art. But we did see the section European paintings which was very nice. At the time we were there, there was an exhibition of dutch landscapes and dutch scenes. I really liked this of course. There are different changing exhibitions during the year. If you like to have quick visit to the museum you can ask a 'What to see in an hour' map. The map will lead you to the most important paintings of the museum then. If you're here with children who don't like to see art: during the weekends, there are babysitters here who will look after your kids (free!) and who will entertain them.
Andy99 Andy99
579 reviews
National Gallery of Art Jan 15, 2008
Tha National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC, is the most comprehensive art museum in the Nation's Capital. The National Gallery is located along the National Mall and is housed in two connected buildings. The West Building is the original structure, dedicated in 1941. (If the West Building's rotunda looks familiar, it is because it was designed by John Russell Pope, also the architect of the Jefferson Memorial.) The East Building, opened in 1978, houses contemporary works of art. Appropriately, it was designed in a contemporary style by I.M. Pei.

The National Gellery was founded by a gift from philanthropist and financier Andrew Mellon and had been enhacned by gifts from many private collectors.

The museum's collection contains representation from American and European painters, sculptors, printmakers, and decorative artists. The visitor can see a wide range of works and schools of art on display ranging from Medieval and Renaissance artists, the Old Masters, Impressionists, British and American portraiture, Amercian artists of the colonial period to the 20th Century, to Abstract Impressionism.

Among the many signficant works to be seen at the National Gallery are Leonardo da Vinci's Ginevra de' Benci, Vermeer's Woman Holding a Balace, Van Gogh's Self Portrait of 1889, Picasso's Family of Saltimbanques, and Jackson Pollock's Lavender Mist.

In additional tot eh permanent collections, there are frequent special exhibits and shows. A Sunday afternoon chamber music sereis takes place in the Garden Court.

Admission to the National Gallery of Art is free. When visiting Washington, you really can't miss this outstanding museum.

Personal photography is permitted.
National Gallery of Art
National Gallery of Art Rotunda
National Gallery of Art Rotunda
East Sculpture Hall
3 / 3 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
Miranda-Maas says:
I'll really visit this museum! It seems great to me!
Posted on: Oct 09, 2008
Maui Maui
21 reviews
Feb 20, 2007
I also want to add to the review -

I highly recommend that during your visit to the National Gallery of Art, you should stop by the Espresso & Gelato Bar in the East Building, Concourse Level for the GELATO!

Since I live in the DC area, I'll sometimes stop by the art gallery, sit by the window which overlooks the outdoor fountain from underground, and treat myself to a small gelato.

Maui says:
There's two parts of the gallery - west and east, and the shops and cafeteria is located underground in the middle of them. Check out more information on their site:
Posted on: Apr 02, 2007
peterbarkley peterbar…
30 reviews
Feb 14, 2004
I fell in love for the first time with modern art. Georgia O'Keeffe's paintings here (through my fiancee's eyes) were stunning. So, too, were the Picasso's and the Van Gogh's. There was so much in the Eastern Gallery that we had to return to visit the western gallery. We also enjoyed a silent film in the showroom downstairs.

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