The Whitney Museum in New York

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The Whitney Museum in New York

The Whitney Museum of American Art in New York – known as The Whitney – is a Manhattan museum that focuses on modern American art. With a collection from the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, the Whitney is a must-see for lovers of modern art. The museum is named after its founder, Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney, a member of the well-known Vanderbilt family. In 1931, she founded the museum as a platform for new American artists with innovative ideas, who had a hard time promoting their unconventional work.

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American Art in New York

The Whitney Museum has a large permanent collection, with no fewer than 25,000 works by more than 3,600 artists. The collection gives you an idea of the influences on American art since 1900. It contains paintings, sculptures, drawings, prints, films, photography, installation art and new media. In addition to the permanent collection, the museum has various interesting temporary exhibitions. One of the museum’s most inspiring exhibitions was the one showcasing the work of Jeff Koons. Some of Koons’ artwork is now part of the permanent collection at The Whitney.

Whitney Museum in New York Jasper Johns Flag Whitney Museum in New york Thomas Downing Five

Visiting The Whitney in The Meatpacking District

From 1966 until 2014, the museum was located on Madison Avenue in the Upper East Side. Mid 2015, The Whitney was relocated for the fourth time. You can now visit the new building between the High Line and the Hudson River, which can both be seen from the museum. The building itself is beautiful, designed by Renzo Piano. The cantilevered staircase entrance leads to an outdoor plaza. The Whitney includes a lobby gallery on ground-floor level (that you can visit for free). On the first and second floors, you can admire the permanent collection. There’s a special exhibition area for temporary collections on the top floor. Not only does the museum include indoor exhibition areas, but the location on Gansevoort Street also has several outside areas and terraces. Some of those with great views of the High Line.

Whitney Museum in New York - Exhibition Whitney Museum in New York - Stairs

Another interesting feature of the building is its expansive gallery: it’s the largest column-free gallery in New York City. This gigantic exhibition space measures almost 18,000 square feet and is a must-see for those who love museums. Head down to the ground-floor level to buy souvenirs in the museum shop or visit the restaurant. Feeling hungry while admiring the artwork on the second floor? Don’t worry, there’s a café on the top floor too!

Eric’s Tip: “The museum is located in the Meatpacking District. Combine your museum visit with a nice walk through High Line Park or the park on piles in the Hudson, Little Island. When I’m hungry, I like to go to Chelsea Market, a huge indoor food market nearby with a great variety of places to eat. At the weekends when the museum is open late, it’s quieter and you can also have a nice drink on the roof terrace.”

Whitney Museum in New York - Outdoor Plaza Whitney Museum in New York - Meatpacking District

Practical Information

After purchasing you will receive a voucher that you can print and exchange for a ticket at the museum. You can also show it as a mobile voucher on your phone to receive your ticket.

  • Location: 99 Gansevoort Street
  • Opening hours:
    • The museum is open from Wednesday to Monday
    • Closed on Tuesdays and public holidays

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Tip: Buy the New York Pass for free entrance

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