MoMA Museum of Modern Art New York

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MoMA Museum of Modern Art in New York

The Museum of Modern Art in New York or MoMA for short is an art museum in Midtown Manhattan focusing on modern and contemporary art. This museum is one of the largest in the world and houses works of Pablo Picasso, Jackson Pollock and Andy Warhol to just name a few. There are always changing exhibitions, a visit to MoMA is therefore never the same. Tickets below include skip-the-line access. This comes in handy as it’s one of the most popular museums in New York.

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MoMA – A much-acclaimed collection of modern art

The art collection of the Museum of Modern Art New York is regarded as one of the best collections of modern art worldwide. It contains over 200,000 works of art. First opened in 1929, this museum of modern art continuously expanded its space and has not only grown the collection but also its reputation. From the outside, this art museum doesn’t look as impressive as the Guggenheim or the Met, but don’t let yourself be fooled; the art collection of MoMA lives up to its fame! The museum owns artworks starting from the year 1880. That means even if you are not that much into contemporary art, you will surely find a gem in the early years of the collection.

Interesting Exhibits at the MoMA

The permanent exhibitions in the Museum of Modern Art can be divided into three categories: Artworks from the 1880s until the 1940s on the fifth floor, the collection from the 1940s to 1970s on the fourth floor, and the most recent creations from the 1970s to the present on the third floor. Personally, I find the artworks on the fifth floor most striking, as these are from the best-known artists, like Frida Kahlo, Salvador Dalí, Gustav Klimt and many more. Special exhibitions are displayed throughout the museum; view the map to see where you can find them.

Contemporary art

While the fifth floor concentrates more on paintings, on the fourth floor there are more architecture and design pieces. In the collection of the 1940-1970s you’ll find Jackson Pollock’s action paintings, as well as abstract art by Henri Matisse and pop art by Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein.

The third floor houses the more experimental things that come to mind when you think about contemporary art, for example, sculptures by Richard Serra, who turns black steel plates into art. Here, you’ll also find the sculpture “Pink Panther” by Jeff Koons (you might know this artist from his shiny steel balloon dogs) as well as works by Gerhard Richter, the record selling artist, who’s most famous for his blurred realistic portraits.

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MoMA Museum of Modern Art in New York - Van Gogh MoMA Museum of Modern Art in New York - Monet

Eric’s Visit in 90 Minutes

Where to begin in a museum with such a vast collection? Usually, I start from the top and spend a lot of time there, as I find these paintings most interesting. But if you prefer the installations and newer stuff, take the other route; from downstairs to upstairs. There is one thing you can’t miss when you visit the MoMA; the crown jewel of the museum on the fifth floor – Vincent van Gogh’s Starry Night. Another painting that I like is “Christina’s World” by Andrew Wyeth. Bought by the MoMA for a mere 1,800 $ in 1948, it’s today one of the most famous American paintings.

After I spent some time on the upper floor, I stroll through the fourth and third floors. As the exhibits change quite often, the topics can be quite diverse. Don’t be surprised when you see unconventional things. Last time I visited, there was a vending machine filled with plastic bottles that contained trash from Williamsburg. You never know in advance what edgy art you might find here!

How to visit the Museum of Modern Art

The older part of the collection is usually displayed on the fifth floor. When you descend on the lower floors, you will see that the artworks are getting “younger”. You are basically travelling through time and end your journey in the present age. Therefore, I would recommend starting on the top floor and then going down floor by floor. After your visit, you can enjoy a drink outside in the sculpture garden in the warmer months. For lunch head to Café 2 on the second floor. If you just want to have a coffee, take the escalators up to the sixth floor, where the Terrace Café welcomes you with snacks and cocktails.

Combine your visit at MoMA Museum of Modern Art with some sightseeing and head first to Top of the Rock in the early morning. On the way there make a stop at St Patrick’s Cathedral, on the opposite side of the observation deck.

If you want to take home some art but can’t afford a real Picasso, make a stop at the MoMA stores inside the museum. There is also a MoMA shop outside, just across the street at 44 West 53rd Street: The MoMA Design Store with all kinds of design classics. If you still can’t get enough of contemporary art, visit the MoMA PS1. This arts center in Long Island City is home to emerging artists. Entrance is free with your MoMA ticket within 14 days.

Eric’s tip: “Try visiting the museum in the morning, about half an hour after it opens. The museum usually has long queues when it opens its doors, so a bit later that time most of the waiting lines should have dispersed. The audio guides at the museum are free, so make use of them. There are free audio guides available in the museum app or you can use the website as a guide.”

MoMA Museum of Modern Art in New York - Installation

VIP tours at MoMA

For a really special experience visit MoMA early in the morning, when it is still closed to the public. With an Art Historian as your guide, you walk through the museum to behold the masterpieces. Because the tour group will be the only visitors in the museum, the halls will be completely empty! The regular entrance to the museum is included, so after this exclusive VIP tour, you can stay as long as you like.

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MoMA Museum of Modern Art in New York - VIP Tour MoMA Museum of Modern Art in New York - Empty Museum

Practical Information

New York MoMA is accessible by wheelchair and has accessible restrooms on all floors. You can take photos without flash at the MoMA for private use. Videos, tripods and selfie sticks are prohibited. Strollers can enter the Museum of Modern Art but are not permitted on the escalators. There’s free wifi at the museum, use it to access the digital map and see what the audio guide has to offer.

  • Opening Hours:
    • Sunday – Friday: 10:30 – 17:30
    • Saturday: 10:30 – 19:00
    • Closed on Thanksgiving and Christmas Day
  • Location: 11 West 53rd Street, between 5th and 6th Avenue. The closest subway station is 5th Avenue – 53rd Street, take line E or M here, it’s only a 5-minute walk to New York’s Museum of Modern Art. Alternatively, you can take the M1, M2, M3, M4 and M5 bus to 5th Avenue & West 54 Street station.

Getting tickets for the Museum of Modern Art

Buy your tickets for MoMA in advance, otherwise, you might end up losing valuable time in the waiting line. If you purchase your tickets in advance online, you can head straight into the museum. Your MoMA ticket also gives you free access to MoMA PS1 within 14 days of admission. Entrance to the Museum of Modern Art is also included with the New York Pass and the Go New York Explorer Pass. Next to the MoMA there are many more top New York museums to visit.

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MoMA Museum of Modern Art in New York - Sculptures MoMA Museum of Modern Art in New York - Art

What is the Museum of Modern Art?

The Museum of Modern Art is a museum that boasts over 200,000 contemporary and modern artworks.

Where is the Museum of Modern Art in New York City?

The MoMA is located in Midtown Manhattan.

How much is admission to the Museum of Modern Art?

MoMA Museum of Arts tickets are CA$43.

How many floors does MoMA have?

The Museum of Modern Art has three main floors but they are arranged with sublevels.

Which is better, MoMA or Met?

MoMA and Met are both two huge art museums, check in advance which collections and exhibits you prefer so you can make a better decision.

How big is the Museum of Modern Art?

MoMA offers a collection of more than 200,000 artworks on 65,800 square meter.

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