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Northwest corner of Houston and Bowery, NYC ©Dan DeLuca
Northwest corner of Houston and Bowery, NYC ©Dan DeLuca
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The 10 Best Art And Culture Apps For Exploring New York City

Picture of Ellen Von Weigand
Updated: 27 October 2016
As the birthplace of a great many American cultural movements, New York City is a haven for lovers of the visual arts, music, theater, film, dance, literature and other mind enriching events. In order to help sift through the vast array of available cultural offerings we have created a list of some of New York’s best art and culture apps.

MET Opera on Demand

Located at the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, The New York Metropolitan Opera has been hosting symphony orchestras, chorus, children’s choir, ballet and individual singers since the late nineteenth century. As the largest classical music organisation in North America, it presents roughly 27 performances annually. MET Opera on Demand allows instant access to classic MET telecasts, dozens of award winning productions and more than 250 radio broadcasts of some of the most popular operas ever composed, dating back to 1936.

Metropolitan Opera House ©faungg's photos
Metropolitan Opera House | ©faungg's photos

NY Art Beat

As one of the most vibrant and dynamic art scenes in the world, New York has a dizzying amount of exhibitions and cultural events on at any given moment. Following the great success of Tokyo Art Beat, NY Art Beat keeps New Yorkers aware of all such events within this cultural hot spot. Residents and visitors alike can customise app settings in order to navigate amongst the 600 listed happenings. Users can bookmark shows, keep track of exhibition dates, and read event descriptions in order to better prioritise gallery visits.

Greene Naftali Gallery, New York ©Andrew Russeth
Greene Naftali Gallery, New York | ©Andrew Russeth

NYPL Biblion: World’s Fair

The 1939 –1940 New York World’s Fair was the second largest American world’s fair ever held, and was attended by over 44 million people from around the globe. With a theme of The World of Tomorrow, it was the first fair to focus specifically on ideas of the future. NYPL Biblion World’s Fair lets users into the New York Public Library archives to read documents, view images, watch films and listen to audio from this important historic event. The vast Library holdings include essays by significant writers such as Karen Abbot and William Grimes, paperwork documenting the development of fair designs, and records of eccentric restaurant ideas that were never realised, among much more.

New York World's Fair Postcard ©Joe Haupt
New York World’s Fair Postcard | ©Joe Haupt

Goings On: The New Yorker

The New Yorker has been granted more National Magazine Awards than any other magazine in the world. Founded in 1925, it offers coverage and criticism on politics, international affairs and the arts, as well as fiction, poetry, humour and cartoons. Goings On: The New Yorker is a cultural guide written by the prestigious writers of the New Yorker. Users can browse listings by category, read reviews of restaurants or events, use interactive maps, and share recommendations with friends.

The New Yorker, 1997 ©Nathan Hughes Hamilton
The New Yorker, 1997 | ©Nathan Hughes Hamilton

Greenwich Village Music Tour in New York

Although now a largely middle to upper class neighborhood, Greenwich Village was once a hub for artistic activity and bohemian life, as well as a breeding ground for jazz, folk, blues and rock. This City Walks tour app takes visitors to 12 important venues that have played a considerable role in the history of music in the area. A narrator tour guide, accompanied by a detailed map, leads users to the locations that helped to establish the West Village as a foremost musical destination.

Snowy Greenwich village, NY ©Teri Tynes
Snowy Greenwich village, NY | ©Teri Tynes

Cool New York

Awarded Best of 2012 by App Store editors, Cool New York offers recommendations accompanied by magnificent photos, pithy texts and an innovative interface design. Locals as well as lovers of the city feature their preferred hotels, restaurants, cafes, shops, showrooms, bars, clubs and locations with a focus on art, architecture and design. As such, a range of ages and prices are represented. Besides recommendations, the app includes an offline map of the city, simple navigation from the user’s current location, the ability to search according to borough and category, simple creation of personal tours and favourites lists, a visual tour of the city and regular event offers.

Central Park ©Alan Strakey
Central Park | ©Alan Strakey


The Museum of Modern Art in New York has been identified as the most influential modern art museum in the world. The collection, which provides an overview of modern and contemporary art, includes architecture, design, drawings, painting, sculpture, photography, prints, illustrated books, film and electronic media. The MoMA app allows instant access to tens of thousands of works in the collection, multimedia tours, and information on current exhibitions, artists, and vocabulary. Although it acts as an ideal aid for visitors to the museum, the app can also be used as a way to experience MoMA from any location in the world.

MoMA rain room, New York ©Stefano Ravalli
MoMA rain room, New York | ©Stefano Ravalli

Museum a GoGo NYC

Museum a GoGo has compiled an all inclusive list of 100+ museums within the five boroughs of New York. With the ability to search museums by category and neighborhood, read descriptions of a museum’s history and collection highlights, see detailed admission prices and access museum websites, culture seekers can select the most convenient and relevant institutions for their interests. This app is useful, informative and time saving so that users can take full advantage of the museum capital of the US.

Guggenheim Museum ©Julian Fong
Guggenheim Museum | ©Julian Fong

Graffiti New York

Graffiti New York presents magnificent examples of the city’s street art shown through the lens of award winning photographer Remo Camerota. As such, this app serves not only to showcase the great talent of these artists, but also to display the expert skill of the photographer. As the nature of street art is ephemeral, it is often only through photographs that these artworks can be seen on a grand scale. Although it is unlikely that pieces included in the app have remained untouched, the photo book can guide visitors to the locations in which these artists work, in hopes of coming upon a more recent masterpiece.

Dumbo Arts Center: Art Under the Bridge Festival ©See-ming Lee
Dumbo Arts Center: Art Under the Bridge Festival | ©See-ming Lee