NYC Museum of Art & Design: A Complete Guide
Written by  Daisie Team
Published on 10 min read


  1. Overview of NYC Museum of Art & Design
  2. How to get to the Museum
  3. Exploring the permanent collection
  4. Visiting the temporary exhibits
  5. Participating in educational programs
  6. What to visit in the Museum Shop
  7. Where to eat in and around the Museum
  8. How to plan your visit
  9. Tickets and opening hours
  10. Additional tips for visitors

If you're a fan of creativity, innovation, and craftsmanship, then the Museum of Art and Design in NYC is a must-see destination. Known for its vast collection of contemporary objects, the museum is a treasure trove of artistic marvels. This guide will take you through everything you need to know about the museum, from how to get there, what to see, and even where to grab a bite. So, get ready to dive into a world where art and design converge in the heart of The Big Apple.

Overview of NYC Museum of Art & Design

The Museum of Art and Design (MAD) is located in Columbus Circle, offering breathtaking views of Central Park and the city's bustling streets. It's a place where creativity takes center stage, showcasing works that push the boundaries of traditional craftsmanship and artistic expression.

Originally known as the Museum of Contemporary Crafts, the Museum of Art and Design has evolved over the years to highlight the intersection of art, design, and craft. It has a rich history that reflects the cultural vibrancy of NYC, making it a key part of the city's artistic landscape.

  • The Museum features four floors of galleries filled with a wide range of exhibits. From ceramics and glass to wood and metal, the Museum celebrates the diversity of materials and techniques used in the world of art and design.
  • Another reason why the Museum is a beloved spot in NYC is its dedication to fostering a love for learning. It hosts a variety of educational programs designed to engage the public, making art and design accessible to everyone.
  • And let's not forget the Museum's shop. It's a great place to find unique gifts and keepsakes, with a selection of items that reflect the Museum's commitment to innovative design.
  • Finally, you can round off your visit with a meal at one of the nearby eateries. Whether you're in the mood for a quick snack or a sit-down meal, there's something to suit every palate.

With so much to offer, the Museum of Art and Design provides a unique and inspiring experience for every visitor. Whether you're a seasoned art lover or simply curious, you'll leave with a deeper appreciation for the world of art and design.

How to get to the Museum

So, you're excited to explore the Museum of Art and Design in NYC, but how do you get there? Don't worry, it's pretty straightforward!

The Museum is located at 2 Columbus Circle in Manhattan. If you're using a GPS or a map app, just type in the address and follow the directions. But if you're more of an old-school navigator, here's how you can reach the Museum:

  • By Subway: The closest subway station is the 59th Street - Columbus Circle Station. You can take the A, B, C, D, or 1 train to this station. Once you exit, the Museum is just a short walk away.
  • By Bus: If you prefer the bus, you can take the M5, M7, M10, M20, or M104. Each of these buses stops at or near Columbus Circle.
  • By Car: If you're driving, there are several parking garages located nearby. Keep in mind that parking in Manhattan can be pricey, so consider using public transportation if possible.

No matter how you choose to travel, getting to the Museum of Art and Design is part of the NYC adventure. So, enjoy the ride and get ready for an incredible artistic journey!

Exploring the Permanent Collection

One of the main reasons you're visiting the Museum of Art and Design in NYC is to see the art, right? Well, you're in for a treat! The Museum's permanent collection is simply breathtaking.

Spanning a vast array of mediums, styles, and time periods, the collection provides a rich snapshot of the world of art and design. It features over 3,000 objects that represent the dynamism and diversity of design across all disciplines.

When you step into the Museum, you'll see a variety of exhibitions. Each one is designed to engage, educate, and inspire visitors. You'll find everything from ceramics and glass to metalwork and digital design represented in the collection. Some highlights include:

  • Luminous Glasswork: The Museum houses an impressive collection of glass art. You'll see everything from intricate, hand-blown pieces to large-scale installations.
  • Global Textiles: The textile collection spans continents and centuries, offering a fascinating glimpse into the world of fabrics and fashion.
  • Contemporary Jewelry: The jewelry collection showcases pieces from leading designers around the world. These aren't your typical necklaces and bracelets — they're wearable works of art!

Remember, there's no rush when you're exploring the Museum of Art and Design NYC's permanent collection. So, take your time, soak in the details, and let the art speak to you. Who knows? You might even discover a new favorite artist!

Visiting the Temporary Exhibits

Now, let's switch gears and talk about the temporary exhibits at the Museum of Art and Design NYC. These exhibits are an exciting part of the Museum experience because they change regularly, giving you a reason to come back again and again!

Temporary exhibits at the Museum typically showcase innovative work from contemporary artists and designers. These exhibits provide a platform for fresh, cutting-edge ideas and offer a glimpse into the future of art and design.

The exhibits cover a wide range of topics and mediums. From interactive digital installations to thought-provoking sculptures, there's always something new and exciting to see. Some recent highlights include:

  • Artistic Augmented Reality: A recent exhibit brought the world of augmented reality into the Museum. Visitors had the chance to interact with virtual objects in real space, blurring the lines between the digital and the physical.
  • Sculpting with Sound: Another exhibit featured artists who create sculptures using sound waves. It was a unique experience that challenged the traditional boundaries of art and design.
  • Eco-Friendly Design: A particularly memorable exhibit showcased designs that are not only beautiful but also sustainable. It was a testament to the power of design in addressing environmental challenges.

As you can see, the temporary exhibits at the Museum of Art and Design NYC offer a wealth of experiences. So, don’t forget to check out what's on during your visit. You never know what you might discover!

Participating in Educational Programs

One of the best things about the Museum of Art and Design NYC is its commitment to educational programs. These programs are designed to inspire and educate visitors of all ages, making your trip to the museum even more rewarding.

The museum hosts a variety of programs. From workshops and lectures to interactive tours, there's something for everyone. Whether you're a seasoned artist or just starting out, you can expand your knowledge and skills in a fun and supportive environment.

Here are some of the educational programs you might want to get involved in:

  • Workshops: These hands-on sessions are perfect for those who learn by doing. You can learn everything from pottery to digital design, all under the guidance of expert instructors.
  • Lectures: If you love learning about the ideas and theories behind art and design, the museum's lecture series is for you. Hear from leading artists, designers, and scholars as they share their insights and experiences.
  • Interactive Tours: These aren't your regular museum tours. They're interactive, engaging, and sure to leave you with a deeper appreciation of the exhibits.

So, on your next visit to the Museum of Art and Design NYC, why not take part in an educational program? It’s a great way to delve deeper into the world of art and design. Plus, it might even inspire you to start a creative project of your own!

What to Visit in the Museum Shop

Once you've explored the Museum of Art and Design NYC, you might be feeling inspired. Perhaps you're itching to create your own art, or maybe you're simply looking to bring a piece of your visit home with you. Either way, a visit to the museum shop is a must.

The Museum Shop is more than just a gift shop. It's a treasure trove of unique items that reflect the museum's commitment to creativity and innovation. Here are some of the must-see items you should check out:

  • Art Books: Immerse yourself in the world of art and design with a wide selection of books. From monographs to exhibition catalogs, you can take a deeper dive into your favorite exhibits.
  • Designer Objects: The shop features a range of designer objects that are as functional as they are beautiful. You'll find everything from handmade jewelry to unique home decor items.
  • Art Supplies: Want to try your hand at creating your own masterpiece? The shop has a variety of art supplies to get you started.

Remember, when you buy something from the Museum Shop, you're not just getting a unique piece of art or design. You're also supporting the Museum of Art and Design NYC and its mission to educate and inspire. So, why not treat yourself or a loved one to something special?

Where to Eat in and Around the Museum

Exploring the Museum of Art and Design NYC can work up quite an appetite. But don't worry, there are plenty of places to refuel without leaving the museum grounds or the surrounding area.

Start with the museum's very own café, aptly named Café 2. Here, you can indulge in a quick snack or a full meal, all while enjoying the vibrant museum atmosphere. The café prides itself on serving fresh, locally sourced food that caters to a variety of dietary preferences.

But what if you're after a more immersive dining experience? Just a stone's throw away from the museum, you'll find a myriad of eateries in the bustling Columbus Circle. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Per Se: For those seeking a fine dining experience, Per Se offers a tasting menu that changes daily, featuring a variety of creative dishes.
  • Marea: If you’re craving seafood, Marea is a must-visit. This upscale Italian restaurant specializes in fresh seafood dishes.
  • The Landmarc: For a more casual bite, head over to The Landmarc. Known for their diverse menu and relaxed atmosphere, it's the perfect place to unwind after a day at the museum.

So, whether you're looking for a quick bite or a full-blown dining experience, you won't have to venture far from the Museum of Art and Design NYC. The city's culinary scene is as diverse and innovative as the museum itself, so why not make a day of it?

How to Plan Your Visit

Planning your visit to the Museum of Art and Design NYC is just as exciting as the visit itself. But where do you start? Here's a step-by-step guide to help you make the most out of your visit.

  1. Decide When to Visit: The museum is open Tuesdays through Sundays. But remember, weekends can be busy. If you prefer a more relaxed visit—weekday afternoons are often quieter.
  2. Check Out What's On: Take a peek at the museum's online schedule. There's always something happening, from temporary exhibitions to educational programs. This can help you decide which day to visit.
  3. Plan Your Route: Are you driving, taking public transit, or walking to the museum? Determine your route ahead of time to avoid any last-minute stress. You can find directions on the museum's website.
  4. Prepare for the Day: Comfortable shoes are a must when exploring the museum. Don't forget to charge your phone or camera for capturing those memorable moments.
  5. Set a Budget: Aside from the admission fee, consider additional costs like meals, souvenirs from the museum shop, and potentially, parking. Having a budget will help you plan accordingly.

Remember, the key to a successful visit to the Museum of Art and Design NYC is to plan ahead. But, also be open to the unexpected—after all, that's where the magic happens!

Tickets and Opening Hours

Now, let's talk about tickets and opening hours for the Museum of Art and Design NYC. Knowing this information beforehand can be quite handy. Let's dive in.

  1. Ticket Prices: General admission for adults is $16. If you're a student or a senior, you only pay $14. Here's a fun fact: children under 18 enter for free! So, why not make it a family day?
  2. Opening Hours: The museum opens its doors from Tuesday to Sunday, starting at 10 AM. They wrap up the day at 6 PM, except for Thursdays. On Thursdays, you get a few extra hours as they stay open until 9 PM. A late-night museum visit, anyone?
  3. Purchasing Tickets: Tickets can be bought at the museum, but if you're like me and prefer to have everything sorted out beforehand, online buying is your best bet. Just print your tickets or show them on your mobile at the entrance.

With your tickets sorted and your timing planned, you're all set to delve into the world of art and design. Remember, the Museum of Art and Design NYC is waiting for you with an array of remarkable exhibits, so make every moment count!

Additional Tips for Visitors

Alright, now that you have the basics down, let's share some insider tips to make your visit to the Museum of Art and Design NYC even better. These are things I wish someone had told me before my first visit:

  1. Plan Ahead: The museum is huge and has a lot to offer. Don't try to see everything in one day. It might be overwhelming, and you might miss out on the joy of truly experiencing each exhibit. So, select a few exhibits that really catch your interest and spend quality time exploring them.
  2. Thursday Evenings: Remember when I said the museum stays open till 9 PM on Thursdays? Well, what I didn't mention is that admission is pay-what-you-wish from 6 PM onwards. Yes, you heard it right. If you're on a budget, this could be your golden ticket.
  3. Take Breaks: Don't forget to rest. There are several benches spread throughout the museum. Additionally, there's a cafe on the ground floor where you can grab a quick bite and refresh.
  4. Ask Questions: The museum staff are incredibly knowledgeable and friendly. Don't hesitate to ask them questions about the exhibits or the museum. They're there to help, and they can truly enrich your experience.
  5. Don't Rush: Remember, the aim is not just to see but to experience. Take your time, let the art sink in, and allow the design to inspire you.

So, are you ready to make the most out of your visit to the Museum of Art and Design NYC? With these tips in hand, I'm sure you'll have a memorable and enriching experience. Enjoy your visit!

If you enjoyed our "NYC Museum of Art & Design: A Complete Guide" blog post and are curious about the future of art and design, we recommend checking out the workshop 'The Insane Potential of AI-Generated Art and Design' by Aunia Kahn. This workshop explores how artificial intelligence is changing the landscape of art and design, offering new possibilities and challenges for creators. Don't miss this opportunity to stay ahead of the curve and learn about the latest developments in the art world.