The Museum of Modern Art’s newly re-designed building (by architect Yoshio Taniguchi) opened in November 2004. Situated in midtown Manhattan near Rockefeller Center and across the street from the American Folk Art Museum, the building uses imaginative materials, a creative application of light, and modern spaces to house its permanent collection and touring exhibitions.
Within the museum you’ll find everything from mass-produced industrial objects from the mid-19th century to the present, displayed in the Architecture and Design galleries, to such masterpieces of modern art as Vincent Van Gogh’s The Starry Night (perhaps the museum’s most popular holding). Another universal crowd-pleaser can be found suspended above the escalators—be sure not to miss Arthur Young’s Bell-47D1 helicopter, one of 3,000 of its kind manufactured between 1946 and 1973.
Special exhibitions, such as the recent Richard Serra retrospective, make use of the building’s outdoor sculpture garden, where weekend crowds can spread out a bit. Adult programming includes a heavy schedule of film screenings, lectures, and symposia, not to mention the adult programming for the younger set—it’s not unusual to find M.I.A. performing at the annual Party in the Garden. Family programs run the age gamut, with events such as Tours for Fours (for children age four and their adult companions), family art workshops, and Watch This! Films for Tweens.
Although the museum does offer free admission on Friday evenings, the ticket line often stretches around the block, and while a lively crowd is great in the garden, it can make for difficult viewing of the museum’s more staggeringly famous artworks from Cézanne, Dali, Monet, Picasso, Pollack, Warhol, et al.
Museum of Modern Art Information
- Public Transportation: Very good (convenient to subway lines E and M at Fifth Avenue/53rd Street; the B, D, F, and M at Rockefeller Center; Buses M1–M5 at 53rd Street and the M50 at 50th Street)
- Handicapped Accessibility: Good
- Hours: Wednesday–Sunday 10:30 a.m.–5:30 p.m., Friday 10:30 a.m.– 8 p.m., closed Tuesday
- Admission: $20, seniors (65+ with ID) $16, students (full-time with current ID) $12, children (16 and under) free, group discounts available, everyone free 4–8 p.m. on Friday evenings
- Tours: Free
- Audio Tours: Free. The museum offers six distinctive audio programs: Special Exhibitions, Modern Voices, Modern Kids, Visual Descriptions, Red Studio Teen Podcast, and Think Modern: Adult and Academic Programs Audio Archive. There are several ways to enjoy the audio programs: on a portable player; via free MoMA WiFi access using your iPhone, iPod Touch, or other wireless device, or by downloading individual MP3 files to your desktop or MP3 player at home. You can also subscribe to MoMA audio podcasts and receive new updates automatically
- Membership: Individual $75/annual. Benefits include membership card(s) granting unlimited free admission, privileged access when visiting, including bypassing ticketing lines, unlimited cardholder entry to MoMA’s film screenings, advance ticketing privileges, and complimentary cardholder admission to P.S. 1 Contemporary Art Center, including the annual Warm-Up summer music series
- Special Membership for Seniors or Non-Residents: National/International $60 (for individuals more than 150 miles outside of New York City)
- Special Young Adult Membership: Student membership is $50/annual (available for full-time students enrolled at an accredited high school, college, university, or art school).