Smithsonian American Art Museum

Washington, D.C., United States

The Smithsonian American Art Museum has one of the world's largest and most inclusive collections of art, from the colonial period to the present, made in the United States. The museum has more than 7,000 artists represented in the collection, which contains the largest collection of New Deal art; a collection of contemporary craft, American impressionist paintings, and masterpieces from the Gilded Age; photography, modern folk art, works by African American and Latino artists, images of western expansion, and realist art from the first half of the twentieth century. Most exhibitions take place in the museum's main building, the old Patent Office Building (shared with the National Portrait Gallery), while craft-focused exhibitions are shown in the museum's Renwick Gallery.

The main building, the Old Patent Office Building, is a National Historic Landmark and is considered an example of Greek Revival architecture in the United States. It was designed by architects Robert Mills and Thomas U. Walter.

Part of the Smithsonian Institution, the museum has a broad variety of American art, with more than 7,000 artists represented, that covers all regions and art movements found in the United States. Among the significant artists represented in its collection are Nam June Paik, Jenny Holzer, David Hockney, Georgia O'Keeffe, John Singer Sargent, Albert Pinkham Ryder, Albert Bierstadt, Edmonia Lewis, Thomas Moran, James Gill, Edward Hopper, John William 'Uncle Jack' Dey, Karen LaMonte and Winslow Homer.



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Founded: 1829
Category: Museums in United States


4.8/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Fatmata Barrie (5 months ago)
Had a really great time here. The open air courtyard seemed like a great place to chill after exploring one side of the museum. It was very expansive so we couldn’t see it all at one time. The portraits of US presidents is definitely a must see though! That was my favorite part.
marcela pena (5 months ago)
I loved this museum, so much to see America art is so rich and well detailed I had and awesome time here the garden was so well taking care of amazing place. Some rooms were under construction but it didn't make our visit unpleasant you could see this museum in and afternoon.
Victoria O'Tool (7 months ago)
This is a fantastic art museum, and I’m confused why there are three dollar ($$$) signs next to this museum because admission is free and you don’t need any sort of ticket. There are a ton of different exhibits for all ages and people. The museum is well decorated, staffed, and clean. I didn’t get the opportunity to see the third floor because this place is HUGE, so I’ll be back. I would 100% recommend visiting this museum!
M J (8 months ago)
It was so disappointing because half of the Museum was closed for renovations otherwise I would have rated it 5 stars. To miss the Impressionist and Gilded Age wings due to the renovations made me sad. However, there are 2 Georgia O'Keefe paintings on display (one on the 3rd floor and one on the lower level), a Grandma Moses, a Warhol, some Pollocks, a Rockwell (3rd floor) and an Andrew Wyeth. I did really enjoy the art which was on display, and hopefully on my next DC vacation I'll be able to see the rest of the Museum including the Hockney next time!
Jose Ortega (12 months ago)
This shares the same space as the National Portrait Gallery. And together they make for one great place to visit and spend time with. It's free which is great. I would go on a Sunday and go super early and park on the street since parking is free in DC on Sundays. It can get pretty busy so just keep that in mind. But it is cant miss kind of place.
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Tyniec Abbey

Tyniec Benedictine abbey was founded by King Casimir the Restorer probably around 1044. Casimir decided to rebuild the newly established Kingdom of Poland, after a Pagan rebellion and a disastrous Czech raid of Duke Bretislaus I (1039). The Benedictines, invited to Tyniec by the King, were tasked with restoring order as well as cementing the position of the State and the Church. First Tyniec Abbot was Aaron, who became the Bishop of Kraków. Since there is no conclusive evidence to support the foundation date as 1040, some historians claim that the abbey was founded by Casimir the Restorer’ son, King Boleslaw II the Generous.

In the second half of the 11th century, a complex of Romanesque buildings was completed, consisting of a basilica and the abbey. In the 14th century, it was destroyed in Tatar and Czech raids, and in the 15th century it was rebuilt in Gothic style. Further remodelings took place in the 17th and 18th centuries, first in Baroque, then in Rococo style. The abbey was partly destroyed in the Swedish invasion of Poland, and soon afterwards was rebuilt, with a new library. Further destruction took place during the Bar Confederation, when Polish rebels turned the abbey into their fortress.

In 1816, Austrian authorities liquidated the abbey, and in 1821-1826, it was the seat of the Bishop of Tyniec, Grzegorz Tomasz Ziegler. The monks, however, did not return to the abbey until 1939, and in 1947, remodelling of the neglected complex was initiated. In 1968, the Church of St. Peter and Paul was once again named the seat of the abbot. The church itself consists of a Gothic presbytery and a Baroque main nave. Several altars were created by an 18th-century Italian sculptor Francesco Placidi. The church also has a late Baroque pulpit by Franciszek Jozef Mangoldt.