Whether you’re interested in contemporary or pre-Colombian art, Santiago’s art galleries will leave you content and inspired by the diverse talent on show. Let’s take a look at the top places to take in art in Chile’s capital.
Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes
The National Museum of Fine Arts is a central place for art history in Santiago. Named a Historic Monument in 1976, the museum boasts a collection of more than 3,000 pieces, the largest display of Chilean sculpture in the country, and the second-largest display of national paintings. With pieces dating back to the colonial period and international collections, this museum has something for everyone.
Connected with the Faculty of Fine Arts of the University of Chile, the Museum of Contemporary Art has deep roots in Santiago. With a collection of nearly 3,000 pieces, consisting of engraving, painting, drawings, watercolors, and sculptures, the museum aims to cultivate a sense of diversity in art that reflects contemporary culture.
Founded in the ’80s and located in the Barrio Lastarria, this museum has exhibits of all sorts, from paintings to photography. The commonality is their depth. The mission of MAVI is to raise awareness of national, cultural, and artistic diversity, while conserving the heritage of Chilean contemporary art.
The Chilean Museum of Pre-Columbian Art opened in December 1981, and was made possible from a generous donation of indigenous art from Chilean architect Sergio Larraín García-Moerno (1905–1999). An international scholar who was inspired by Chile’s diverse terrain and cultural diversity, Sergio Larraín believed that the artistic remnants of this population were a treasure, and a message of humanity waiting to be decoded.
Located in the upscale Vitacurra commune, this gallery aims to familiarize the public with contemporary art. Galeria Animal boasts an eclectic collection, from experiential art to historic artists such as Picasso.
The main multimedia hub of the city, located in Plaza Italia, Centro Arte Alameda hosts video showings, concerts, photography exhibitions, and more. For a diverse sense of art appealing to a variety of audiences, head over to Centro Are Alameda.
Located in the artsy Barrio Lastarria area, this is Chile’s first art gallery boasting unique illustrations and creative comics. PLOP!is colorful in every sense of the word. Consistently hosting conferences, workshops, and book presentations, PLOP! is very involved in the graphic and comic community and is a great place to find creative inspiration.
A hub for contemporary Chilean art, Galeria La Puerta plays host to a multitude of multimedia: paintings, sculptures, digital art, photography, and interior design. Created through the collaboration of architect and artist María Paz Bonomi and mathematician and computer scientist Carolina Galilea, Galeria La Puerta is all about community, creativity, and contemporary Chilean art.
Santiago’s oldest art gallery, Isabel Aninat Galeria De Arte houses Chilean and international contemporary art. The founder, Isabel Aninat, studied philosophy and aesthetics, so it is no wonder this gallery is so aesthetically pleasing. With three exhibition spaces, including one outdoors, Isabel Aninat Galeria De Arte offers flexibility and freedom for both artists and visors. With its simple white exterior, it is also a great place to stop for a quick photoshoot before heading inside.