Buenos Aires is brimming with artists – so it stands to reason that the city should have some pretty great museums to match. As a matter of fact, here’s six must-see museums to get you started.
1. Usina del Arte
Housed inside a striking old-brick electrical plant in the working class neighborhood of La Boca, Usina del Arte is an exhibition space as well as a concert venue that offers a robust cultural program. I went there a few weeks ago to see an expansive photography exhibition showcasing the work of French master Henri-Cartier Bresson. The area can be a little dodgy, but this just makes all the hipsters who left trendier parts of town seem that much more legit. Right? Anyway, however you feel about hipsters, it’s worth a visit. The program constantly changes, so check the website for details about the latest exhibition.
Usina del Arte, Agustín Caffarena 1, La Boca, Buenos Aires, +54 11 4909 2076.
Hours vary depending on the week’s program, which you can view here.
2. Museo Xul Solar
The works of Argentine painter, Renaissance man and eccentric Xul Solar (1887-1963) are located in a Palermo museum that’s an award-winning piece of art in itself. The venue is around a century old and was renovated in the 1990’s to reflect Solar’s architectural ideas. A friend of famous Argentinian writer Jorge Louis Borges, Xul Solar was an intellectual and artistic polyglot. His works reveal a mind of marvelous modern imagination — don’t miss it.
Museo Xul Solar, Laprida 1212, Buenos Aires, +54 11 4824-3302.
Hours: Tuesday – Friday 12 PM – 8 PM. Saturdays: 12 PM – 7 PM. Closed Sundays and Mondays.
3. Museo de la Pasión Boquense
Enough art! Soccer fans, this one’s for you. Museo de la Pasión Boquense is all about the famous Boca Juniors soccer team and the La Boca neighborhood where they first came to be. There’s a huge auditorium, complete with a 360-degree theater which makes you feel like you’re actually on the field. Learn all about the history of the Boca Juniors team (made famous by the likes of Maradona), and browse their trophies, uniforms and team paraphernalia. The name of the museum itself translates to something along the lines of: The Museum of the Passion For All Things Boca – so remember to bring your inner sports fan.
Museo de la Pasión Boquense, Brandsen 805, Buenos Aires, +54 11 4362 1100.
Hours: Open daily from 10 AM – 6 PM.
4. Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes and MALBA
Impossible not to mention is the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes. Not only does this museum house the largest public art collection in all of Latin America, it also has an impressive collection of European impressionists; thanks largely to the wave of European immigrants that arrived here at the turn of the last century. Speaking of which, this is the place to learn about the history and development of Argentine artists in a global context. If the very thought of this leaves you hungry for more, pop over to the Latin American Modern Arts Museum, or MALBA, which specifically focuses on 20th and 21st century Latin American art.
Hours: Tuesday – Friday, 11 AM – 8 PM. Saturdays and Sundays 10 AM – 8 PM. Closed Mondays.
5. Colección Fortabat
Argentine philanthropist Amalia Fortabat’s collection not only contains works by world masters like Klimt, Rodin, Andy Warhol and William Turner; it also showcases some of the best Argentine contemporary artists of all time. And let’s not forget there’s an amazing view of the river to admire. They do offer tours, but they are in Spanish. To request an English tour, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Colección Fortabat, Olga Cossettini 141, Puerto Madero, Buenos Aires, +54 11 4310 6600.
Hours: Tuesday – Sunday: 12 PM – 8 PM. Closed Mondays.
6. Planetario Galileo Galilei
Given that most people are used to a different hemisphere, this planetarium in Buenos Aires offers an all new celestial experience. Shaped like the planet Jupiter, this eye-catching space museum is located in the beautiful parks of Palermo. Planetario Galileo Galilei offers a 360-degree space show, astronomical courses, and various exhibits.
Planetario Galileo Galilei, Av. Sarmiento s/n 1425, Buenos Aires, +54 11 4771 6629.
Hours: At the time this article was published, the planetarium was temporarily closed for construction. Check back to their website for the latest information.