10 Must-Visit Art Galleries & Museums In Raleigh, North Carolina

Photo of Jessica Dawdy
31 October 2016

Named “America’s Best City” by BusinessWeek in 2011, Raleigh offers a pleasant balance of big city convenience and small town friendliness, with excellent restaurants, pubs, cafés, and museums, along with plenty of quiet parks and a pedestrian-friendly downtown area. This North Carolina city is home to a vibrant art scene, with dozens of galleries exhibiting the work of internationally acclaimed artists, as well as home-grown talent.

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Located among the trendy restaurants and shops of Midtown Raleigh, ArtSource features a collection of more than 1600 original works of art by 75 artists. Voted “Best Art Gallery” for several consecutive years by Metro Magazine, the space features contemporary work in a variety of mediums, ranging from oils, watercolours, and acrylics, to sculptures, prints and mixed media. Founded in 1990, the gallery also provides art consulting and framing services for private collectors and local businesses. ArtSource hosts three to four major exhibitions each year, as well as rotating art displays featuring local established and emerging artists. The gallery also holds artist workshops and demonstrations, which provide visitors with the opportunity to have their work critiqued by a professional artist, or simply watch an artist at work.

Gallery C

Set in the historic Russ-Edwards House, Gallery C showcases original oil paintings, prints, and sculpture by more than 30 contemporary artists. Opened in 1985, the gallery also specializes in appraising and reselling the work of historically important North Carolina artists, as well as folk art, Haitian art, animation and antique prints. In addition to participating in numerous art fairs, Gallery C features around eight exhibitions each year, including both solo and group shows. Some of the artists represented in the gallery include sculptor Ted Ludwiczak, photographer Bill Cooper, and painter Fabienne Delacroix.

Image Courtesy of Adam Cave Fine Art

Adam Cave Fine Art

Owned by Adam and Cynthia Cave, Adam Cave Fine Art exhibits and sells photographs, paintings, glassworks, and original prints by a small group of regional and national contemporary artists. Set on the second floor of a 110-year-old building, the gallery features around seven to nine solo and group shows per year, showcasing a variety of styles and mediums, along with a yearly exhibit of mid-20th century prints. Featured artists include Jimmy Craig Womble II, a North Carolina oil painter who portrays abandoned houses, old vehicles, and other typically overlooked objects and places; and photographer Andrew Ross who uses large format cameras and tilt-shift lenses to capture urban landscapes.

Image Courtesy of Adam Cave Fine Art

311 West Martin Street Gallery and Studios

311 West Martin Street Gallery and Studios began in 2007 as a private studio space, and has since evolved into a commercial gallery managed by Carol Joy Shannon. The gallery features 16 studios where over 20 artists work and showcase their art. In addition to the studios, the site features a curated gallery, as well as a gift shops selling more reasonably priced pieces created by local artists. 311 West Martin Street Gallery and Studios features monthly exhibitions of regional artists, showcasing works ranging from water colours and folk art, to jewelry and photography. The gallery offers the unique opportunity for visitors to meet and talk to the artists who work in the studios every day.

Nicole's Studio & Art Gallery

Art Gallery
Map View
Nicole’s Studio & Art Gallery showcases the work of more than 30 artists, both emerging and nationally acclaimed in a wide range of mediums and styles. Many of the gallery’s artists have been recognised with numerous awards, including pastel artist Diana Coidan, Jean Kolb Grunewald, who specialises in plein air paintings, and the gallery’s owner, Nicole White Kennedy, known for her paintings of Italy, who has won the Alfred and Mary Crimi Award and the Jack Richeson Award of Excellence. In addition to regular exhibitions, the gallery also offers framing services and a variety of art classes and workshops for all levels, from beginner to advanced. Nicole’s Studio & Art Gallery prides itself on creating a friendly, approachable environment for art buyers and enthusiasts.


One of the largest open studio environments in the US, Artspace is a non-profit visual art center that presents exhibitions and education programs. Located in the historic Sanders Ford building in downtown Raleigh, Artspace features the work of more than 100 regional, national, and international artists. Opened in 1986, the gallery is composed of three exhibitions spaces, an education space, gift shop, and studios for more than 30 artists working in a variety of mediums. The studios are free and open to the public, allowing visitors to witness the creative process, as well as interact with the artists and purchase pieces from them directly. The gallery also holds art programming and workshops for children, adults, and at-risk youth.

Image Courtesy of Flanders Gallery

Flanders Gallery

Founded in 2006, Flanders Gallery is dedicated to fostering the careers of emerging artists and showcasing innovate contemporary art. The gallery is set in a renovated warehouse, its original exposed brick, metal doors and concrete flooring complimenting the creative works presented in the building’s two exhibition spaces. Located across the street from the Contemporary Art Museum, Flanders Gallery presents 14-18 exhibitions each year, featuring artistic works in a variety of media. Artists represented at the gallery include photographer Taj Forer, whose photographs have been featured in private collections, museums, galleries across the globe, including The Sir Elton John Collection and The J. Paul Getty Museum; and Kenn Kotara, known for his inventive installations, which include Braille-based visual studies.

Image Courtesy of Flanders Gallery

Rebus Works

An artist-run gallery, Rebus Works is dedicated to presenting works of fine art by local and national artists. Opened in 2003, the gallery features a storefront that showcases functional art, ceramics, jewelry, glass, and other handmade works. Artists exhibited at the gallery have included Bill Hickman, known for his welded steel sculptures; and portraits by photographer Mitchell Kearney. In addition to exhibitions, Rebus Works also offers framing services, and numerous community programs, including children’s art summer camps. The gallery is known for hosting ‘the Saturday Market at Rebus Works’, a popular weekly food and craft market.

Visual Art Exchange

The oldest private, non-profit, visual arts organization in Raleigh, Visual Art Exchange (VAE), formerly known as Wake Visual Arts, is dedicated to promoting the careers of emerging artists. Winner of the prestigious Raleigh Medal of Arts Award, VAE offers monthly exhibitions, in addition to hosting artist nights, lectures and workshops. The gallery is committed to nurturing new artists, offering networking, education programs, professional critiques and sales opportunities. One of the gallery’s largest programs is SPARKcon, a four-day interdisciplinary festival that showcases and connects more than 2000 artists, designers, performers and musicians.

Local Color Gallery

The Local Color Gallery began with four women artists who needed a place to showcase their work, and has since grown into a women’s artist cooperative. The work of the gallery’s 13 artists is exhibited in rotating monthly shows, with mediums ranging from ceramics and stained glass, to watercolors and oil paintings. As an artist-run gallery, visitors have the opportunity to meet and speak directly with the artists, all of whom live in the local area. In addition to monthly exhibitions, the gallery sponsors the yearly Made Like That show, an exhibition open to submissions from high school students across Wake County.

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