An Art Lover's Guide To New York City

Photo of Ryan Parkes
5 April 2016

New York City encompasses a large and important sector of the art world, offering some of the best international museums, galleries, and exhibition spaces. Ranging from the didactic and the expressionistic to the jarring and the bizarre, we explore a variety of artistic spaces available to art lovers NYC.

Jack Hanley Gallery | © superflexnet/Flickr

Jack Hanley Gallery

Art Gallery
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Recycling Religion
Recycling Religion | © Ryan Parkes
Jack Hanley Gallery relocated to New York City in 2008 in the heart of Manhattan’s Lower East Side and is dedicated to showcasing some of the contemporary art world’s most talented creatives. Aside from a unique program of exhibitions, the gallery also offers organized projects, publications and limited edition posters.


Art Gallery
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A non-profit space for contemporary art, WhiteBox is dedicated to showcasing the meaningful nature of the artist’s practice. WhiteBox offers ‘exhibitions, performances, screenings, readings, lectures, and panel discussions’ designed to enrich the surrounding community and create an innovative environment for anyone interested in contemporary art. Currently on view, Recycling Religion juxtaposes Russian Orthodox images next to consumerist advertisements and normative uses of technology.

Walter de Maria's New York Earth Room

Art Gallery
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Located in SoHo, the somber New York Earth Room was created by minimalist artist Walter De Maria. On long-term view to the public since 1980, this installation consists of a room filled approximately two feet high with soil. Upon entering the sculpture through the stairwell, the atmosphere becomes progressively pungent and heavy. Staring into the room erects solemn expressions of the pastoral. The intimate interior piece provides a serene juxtaposition to the high-energy urbanity of the surrounding area.


Bar, Pub Grub, 0
A cross-town trip to the East Village might yield a good run at some of the city’s trendiest thrift shops. Tucked between these gems is Lovecraft, a bar with a visual take on the lauded titular author’s legacy and imagination. Shows are often held on the floor below the bar, a space routinely surrounded by artwork from New York City contemporaries.


Bar, Pub Grub
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The literary references continue on a few blocks down at Clockwork. This bar is just as artsy as the last, but with an edge. Where Lovecraft incubates its patrons with acoustic instrumentation and street art, Clockwork revels in aggressive guitar and vocal riffs from Misfits and Black Flag, complementing the movement of actual graffiti from unknowns. Clockwork is highly interactive; the patrons are the artists. Come early enough in the day with a loaded spray can and the bar owner will be all smiles.


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303 Gallery‘ references Alfred Stieglitz’s famous artist collective, originally located in Room 303 of the Anderson Galleries building. With a rich history in New York City (first established at 303 Park Avenue South in 1984 and moving to the East Village, SoHo, and finally Chelsea), 303 Gallery has worked with some of the art world’s best names, including Christopher Wool, Robert Gober, and Andreas Gursky.

Pace Gallery

Art Gallery
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Pace Gallery has featured pieces by artists such as Alexander Calder
Pace Gallery has featured pieces by artists such as Alexander Calder | © Kokyat Choong / Alamy Stock Photo
Pace is one of New York City’s most established contemporary art galleries, representing a long list of significant artists from around the world. A must-see for anyone gallery-hopping in Chelsea, Pace exhibits some of the Gallery District’s most prominent and groundbreaking exhibitions.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Museum, Park, Shop, Church, Building, Theater, Art Gallery
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Metropolitan Museum Of Art, New York City.
The Metropolitan Museum Of Art is the largest art museum in the United States | © Horizon Images/Motion / Alamy Stock Photo
Located on 5th Avenue along the famous Museum Mile, the Metropolitan Museum of Art houses some of the world’s finest, most enriching works of art. From civilization’s oldest artifacts to modern-day works of painting, sculpture, and photography, you can travel through time and space in a singular afternoon at one of New York City’s most prized institutions.

The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture

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The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture houses over 11 million items
The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture houses over 11 million items | © Douglas Lander / Alamy Stock Photo
New York is experiencing some major social shifts; minorities whose voices were previously silenced are using art as a medium of social and cultural expression. Through art, these New Yorkers create a dialogue with the city and its inhabitants. Currently on view at the Schomburg Center in Harlem, Unveiling Visions conflates references to blaxploitation works and sidereal notions of expression to articulate local culture and events. This exhibition is an artistic conceptualization of the historic neighborhood it occupies.