Museum of Arts & Design: Comprehensive Guide
Written by  Daisie Team
Published on 9 min read


  1. Overview of the Museum
  2. How to get there
  3. Hours and Admissions
  4. Tour of the Galleries
  5. Museum Programs and Events
  6. Visiting with Children
  7. Dining Options
  8. Museum Shop
  9. Accessibility at the Museum
  10. Tips for a Great Visit

Are you considering a visit to the Museum of Arts & Design? If so, you're in for a treat! This treasure trove of creativity is more than just a museum—it's a haven for anyone who appreciates the power of design and the beauty of art. This guide will help you make the most of your visit, from understanding what the museum has to offer, to finding your way there, and ensuring you don't miss any of the highlights. So, let's get started!

Overview of the Museum

The Museum of Arts & Design, often fondly referred to as MAD, is a gem in the heart of New York City. Nestled at 2 Columbus Circle, it's a hub where art, craft, and design intersect. This museum isn't just about displaying art—it's about experiencing it. Here, you'll find a world where creativity thrives and innovation is celebrated.

As you explore the museum, you'll discover an array of exhibits, each dedicated to different forms of art and design. From contemporary jewellery to furniture design, textile art to glassworks—everything here tells a story. The museum has a captivating collection of over 3,000 objects that will take you on a journey through the world of arts and design.

But the Museum of Arts & Design goes beyond being a display gallery. It's a dynamic space that hosts a variety of programs and events. It's a place where you can see artists at work, participate in workshops, watch films, and even attend performances. In a nutshell, there's always something happening at MAD!

And let's not forget about the other amenities. The museum also offers a range of dining options, a museum shop, and even special provisions for visiting with children. It's fully accessible, ensuring that everyone can enjoy the wonders of arts and design. So, whether you're a seasoned art aficionado or just curious about design, the Museum of Arts & Design has something for you.

How to get there

Getting to the Museum of Arts & Design is as easy as pie, no matter where you are in New York City. Let's go over the different options:

  • By Subway: The closest subway station to the museum is 59th Street–Columbus Circle. This station is served by the A, B, C, D, and 1 lines. From the station, it's just a short walk to the museum.
  • By Bus: If you're traveling by bus, lines M5, M7, M10, M20, and M104 stop near Columbus Circle. Hop off and you'll find the museum right around the corner.
  • By Car: If you're driving, you can use a GPS or a mapping service to get directions to 2 Columbus Circle. Just keep in mind that parking in Manhattan can be a challenge, so plan ahead!

Remember, New York City is a busy place, so be sure to allow yourself plenty of time to travel to the Museum of Arts & Design. You wouldn't want to rush through the exhibits, would you?

Hours and Admissions

When it comes to planning your visit to the Museum of Arts & Design, timing is key. Luckily, the museum has pretty flexible hours that can accommodate most schedules.

The museum is open Tuesday through Sunday. Here's the schedule:

  • Tuesday to Sunday: 10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
  • Thursdays: 10:00 AM - 9:00 PM
  • Mondays: Closed

As for the admission, the museum is committed to making art accessible to everyone. The general admission price is $18, but there are discounts available. Students and seniors get in for $12, and children under 18 are free. If you happen to visit on a Thursday evening from 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM, you can pay what you wish!

Now that you know when to visit, let's talk about what you'll see inside the Museum of Arts & Design.

Tour of the Galleries

Stepping into the Museum of Arts & Design is like stepping into another world, one filled with inspiration and creativity. The museum is home to four floors of galleries, each one brimming with unique and innovative works of art and design.

Here's a brief rundown of what you can expect:

  • First Floor: The first floor is where you'll find the museum's latest and most cutting-edge exhibitions. Expect to see a diverse range of art forms from both established and emerging artists.
  • Second Floor: On the second floor, you'll find the permanent collection. This is where the museum showcases its extensive collection of contemporary craft, art, and design. It's a must-see for anyone interested in these fields.
  • Third Floor: The third floor is home to the Open Studios. This is a unique space where you can watch artists at work. It's a great opportunity to see the creative process in action and maybe even pick up a few tips and tricks!
  • Fourth Floor: Finally, the fourth floor houses rotating exhibitions. These temporary exhibitions showcase a wide range of styles and mediums, providing a fresh perspective on the world of art and design.

So, whether you're a seasoned art enthusiast or a curious newbie, there's something for you at the Museum of Arts & Design. Just remember — there's no rush! Take your time to absorb the beauty of each piece, and don't forget to let your imagination run wild.

Museum Programs and Events

If you thought the Museum of Arts & Design was all about quiet contemplation, think again! Yes, the galleries are amazing, but did you know the museum also offers a variety of programs and events?

Here's a sneak peek of what's on offer:

  • Workshops: Want to try your hand at creating your own masterpiece? The museum offers a variety of workshops, from pottery to digital design. You'll get expert guidance and who knows, you might just discover a new hobby.
  • Lectures: The museum invites artists, designers, and scholars from around the world to share their knowledge and insights. These engaging talks will surely give you a deeper appreciation of the world of art and design.
  • Special Events: From exhibition openings to art fairs, the Museum of Arts & Design is always buzzing with activity. These events are a great way to meet like-minded folks and immerse yourself in the vibrant arts community.

Remember to check the museum's official website for the latest schedule. Whether you're an artist, a designer, or simply an art lover, these events are a great way to expand your horizons and engage with the art community.

So, why not mark your calendar for a workshop or lecture at the Museum of Arts & Design? After all, art is more fun when it's shared!

Visiting with Children

Planning a family trip to the Museum of Arts & Design? That's a fantastic idea! The museum is not just a paradise for adults, but also a wonderland for kids. It's a great place to inspire their creativity and broaden their horizons.

Here are some tips to help you make the most out of your visit with the little ones:

  • Interactive Exhibits: Look for exhibits that are interactive. Kids learn best when they can touch, explore, and play. The museum often has installations that are perfect for inquisitive little hands.
  • Workshops for Kids: Yes, you read it right! The Museum of Arts & Design offers workshops specially designed for children. These are not only fun but also a great way for kids to learn about different art forms and techniques.
  • Take Breaks: Museums can be a bit overwhelming for tiny tots. Plan for short breaks in between exploring the galleries. There are several comfortable spots within the museum where you can sit and relax.

A visit to the Museum of Arts & Design can be a memorable experience for your children. It's not just about viewing art, it's about experiencing it. So, get ready to see those young eyes light up with wonder and curiosity!

Dining Options

When you're immersing yourself in the artistic wonders of the Museum of Arts & Design, it's easy to lose track of time. And when hunger strikes, there's no need to dash out in search of food—there are plenty of delightful dining options right in the museum!

Here's what you can expect:

  • Robert Restaurant: If you're after a culinary experience that matches the artistic brilliance of the museum, Robert is the place to be. With a menu that pays homage to American cuisine, and a view that overlooks Central Park, it's truly a feast for all senses.
  • Grab 'n Go: If you prefer a quick bite, the museum's Grab 'n Go section is perfect. Offering a range of sandwiches, salads, and snacks, it's the perfect way to refuel before you dive back into the galleries.
  • Coffee Bar: Need a caffeine fix? The museum's Coffee Bar serves up a great selection of coffee, tea, and pastries. It's also the perfect spot to sit back and soak in the museum's artistic vibes.

So, whether you're after a gourmet meal, a quick snack, or just a spot to rest and refuel, the Museum of Arts & Design has got you covered!

Museum Shop

Once you've had your fill of artistic inspiration, you might want to take a piece of the Museum of Arts & Design home with you. And the museum shop is just the place to do that.

Here's what you can find at the museum shop:

  • Art Books: Want to know more about a particular artist or art movement? The shop has a wide selection of art books that can help you deepen your understanding.
  • Designer Jewelry: The shop also features a collection of designer jewelry, perfect for adding an artistic touch to your wardrobe or as a unique gift for someone special.
  • Artistic Home Decor: From beautiful ceramics to unique textiles, you'll find a range of home decor items that can bring a bit of the museum's artistic flair into your own home.
  • Kids' Art Supplies: If your visit to the museum has inspired your little ones, you'll find plenty of art supplies for kids in the shop. It's a great way to encourage their creativity.

So, don't forget to stop by the museum shop on your way out. It's the perfect way to bring a piece of the Museum of Arts & Design into your everyday life.

Accessibility at the Museum

Ensuring everyone can enjoy the beauty of art and design is a top priority at the Museum of Arts & Design. The museum is committed to providing a welcoming and accessible environment for all visitors.

Here's what you need to know about accessibility at the museum:

  • Wheelchair Accessibility: All public areas in the museum are wheelchair accessible. You can access all floors of the museum via elevators. Wheelchairs are also available for loan at no charge on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • Service Animals: Visitors with disabilities are welcome to bring their service animals into the museum. Just make sure your furry friend is always under control.
  • Visual Impairment: For visitors with visual impairment, the museum offers guided tours with detailed verbal descriptions of the artworks. This can bring the visual arts to life in a vibrant and engaging way.
  • Hearing Impairment: For visitors with hearing impairment, sign language interpreters can be arranged for guided tours. The museum also provides assistive listening devices for lectures and performances.

When you plan your visit, remember to contact the museum in advance if you require any special accommodations. The Museum of Arts & Design is dedicated to ensuring that everyone can appreciate the beauty of art and design, no matter their abilities.

Tips for a Great Visit

Now that you're prepared to explore the Museum of Arts & Design, here's a handful of tips to make your visit even more memorable:

  • Time Management: With so much to see, it's easy to lose track of time. You might want to allocate at least 2-3 hours to fully immerse yourself in the museum's rich collections. Remember, art can't be rushed!
  • Use the Gallery Guides: The Museum of Arts & Design provides handy gallery guides. These can help you navigate the exhibits and understand the context of the artworks. It's like having a mini art historian in your pocket!
  • Get Interactive: Take advantage of the interactive elements in the museum. They are designed to enhance your understanding and appreciation of the artworks. Plus, it's fun!
  • Ask Questions: Don't hesitate to ask questions. The museum staff are there to help you. They love to share their knowledge about the exhibits and the history of the museum, so don't be shy!
  • Respect the Art: Remember to follow the museum rules—no touching the artwork, keep your voice down, and no flash photography. These rules help preserve the art for future visitors and create a respectful environment for everyone.

Visiting the Museum of Arts & Design is more than just a day out—it's a journey into the world of creativity and imagination. So take your time, stay curious, and most importantly, enjoy every moment!

If you enjoyed our comprehensive guide to the Museum of Arts & Design and are looking to build a sustainable career as a multidisciplinary artist, then you'll definitely want to check out Rosa van Iterson's workshop, 'Building A Sustainable Career As A Multidisciplinary Artist.' This workshop will provide you with invaluable insights and advice on how to navigate the world of art and design as a multifaceted creative.