Creative Things To Do In and Around New York City
New York City has been a destination for travelers for centuries. With its support of arts in all forms, culture and dining experiences, makers will find inspiration — maybe where they least expect it.
Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) is a must visit for creatives! The museum collection includes almost 200,000 objects of modern and contemporary art. They offer educational programs inspired by the belief that art and ideas spark curiosity that ignites new ideas, conversations, and creative exploration.
Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology is a one of few museums dedicated to fashion. The museum educates and inspires diverse audiences with innovative exhibitions and projects to advance the knowledge of fashion. The permanent collection at the museum boasts over 50,000 garments and accessories from the 18th century to now.
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Metropolitan Museum of Art collection includes works from around the world, aspiring to collect rare and beautiful objects. Through exhibits and events, it collects, studies, conserves and presents significant works of art across all times and cultures. The varied experiences connect people through art.
The Met Cloisters, a branch of the Met, features the art and architecture of medieval Europe. It overlooks the Hudson River and includes gardens planted according to horticultural information from medieval treatises and poetry, garden documents. Exhibits include medieval tapestries, stained glass windows and over 2,000 works of art from the 12th through the 15th centuries.
New Museum of Contemporary Art is the only museum in Manhattan dedicated to contemporary art. Founded in 1977, it helps bring light on new work by living artists. At that time, traditional art museums focused on older, establish artists and their works. Today the museum has international reach; it believes in the essential role of culture to a free and open civil society.
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum is located in Frank Lloyd Wright’s iconic building on Fifth Avenue. It showcases the American and European abstract and nonobjective art that Solomon R. Guggenheim collected over the years.
Museum of the City of New York has about 750,000 objects in its collection, representing the culture of New York City over the centuries. It includes over 25,000 garments and accessories from the late 17th century to today. The collection contains costumes, gowns and works of popular New York designers like Vera Maxwell, Valentina, Clair McCardell, Mainbocher and more.
Whitney Museum of American Art has a special focus on works by living artists. It represents the full-range of 20th century and contemporary American art. The museum takes pride purchasing works within the year they were created, often before the artists are broadly recognized.
Brooklyn Museum is one of the largest and oldest art museums in the United States. It creates inspiring encounters with art that expand the ways we see ourselves, the world and its possibilities.
The Jewish Museum was founded in 1904 and is one of the oldest Jewish museums in the world. They see themselves at the intersection of art and Jewish culture, bringing awareness to people of all backgrounds. The collection is about 30,000 works of art, reflecting over 4,000 years of Jewish culture. It is all housed in the Warburg mansion on Museum Mile.
The Frick Collection specializes in Old Master paintings and European sculpture and decorative arts. It started from a collection of art by Henry Clay Frick, a Pittsburgh industrialist. The museum continues to acquire works including Rembrandt, Goya, Bellini, Vermeer and more.
Museum of Arts and Design was founded in 1956 to originally recognize contemporary American artists. It champions contemporary makers across creative fields. It presents artists and their work, celebrating all facets of making and the creative process of transforming materials into art.
American Folk Art Museum celebrates the art of self-taught artists. Their inspiration emerges from unsuspected paths and unconventional places. It gives voices to makers who are not in the the artist mainstream. Folk artists have shaped American culture and influence art traditions.
The Bronx Museum of the Arts is a contemporary art museum presenting new ideas and voices in a global context. It hopes to make contemporary art a vital and relevant experience. They feature art that is culturally diverse and from under-represented artists across a variety of visual mediums. It has over 2,000 objects in their collection.
The Studio Museum in Harlem highlights artists of African descent and works inspired or influenced by black culture. Opening in 1968, the museum’s permanent collection invites people to connect to our communities and investigate the world around us.
Queens Museum celebrates the uniquely diverse ethnic, cultural and international community of Queens and their art. Focused on visual arts, the museum schedules educational programs and exhibits relating to the contemporary urban life of Queens.
The New York Historical Society is New York’s first museum, established in 1804. Founded by a group of eleven men who lived through the turbulent years of the American Revolution and British occupation of New York, they wanted to preserve the evidence of their own historical moment with original records and authentic documents. It is home to not only historical records, but also important works of art in American history.
Tenement Museum‘s mission is to foster a society that embraces and values the role of immigration in the evolving American identity. Visitors tour tenement apartments in restored buildings to discover how immigrants lived in the 19th and 20th centuries. Walking tours explore often-forgotten places and unexplored spaces.
South Street Seaport Museum is located in the heart of the Seaport District of New York City. It includes an extensive collection of maritime art and artifacts, reference library, galleries and a working 19th-century print shop. Step outside and visit the fleet of historical vessels that tell the history of New York City.
National September 11 Memorial and Museum documents and honors those killed in 2001. It is located at the World Trade Center in New York City. The collection displays monumental and authentic artifacts that share personal stories of loss, recovery and hope.
Statue of Liberty & Ellis Island Museum of Immigration is a must visit, especially if the weather is nice. Lady Liberty. a gift from France to the United States in 1886, is a universal symbol of freedom and democracy. Visit Ellis Island to experience the processes immigrants went through when they landed on US soil.
Empire State Building claims to be the world’s most famous building. In 1932, it was the world’s tallest building and quickly became a tourist attraction. It became famous in 1933 when King Kong debuted, putting the Empire State Building front-and-center in the famous film. It is still open to the public for amazing views of New York City.
Times Square is a must stop for all visitors to New York City. Browse the streets for shopping, dining and public art. Blocks from many Broadway theaters, and a short walk to the garment district, the buzz of Times Square sparks creativity.
Rockefeller Center has something to offer everyone, year round. From lunch outside on a nice spring day to ice skating in winter months. Rockefeller Center is a gathering place for great food, shopping and people watching among art deco art, sculpture and motifs.
St. Patrick’s Cathedral opened its doors in 1879. Funded by a select group of benefactors, each pledging $1000, as well as donations from immigrants, the church was created to affirm the ascendance of religious freedom and tolerance. Today is continues to be a work of art, with its ornate architecture.
The Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine opened its doors in 1899 as the mother church for the Episcopal Diocese of New York. It continues to maintain preservation of the great architectural and historic site that is its legacy. Visit the church to view the art within it, from art exhibits to textile restoration. Creatives will walk away with inspiration and learnings.
If you can get tickets to visit a live performance at the Metropolitan Opera House, you should. Founded in 1883, the Metropolitan Opera was the first opera house to be built on Broadway. Since its beginnings, it has always been a stage for the worlds most important and famous performers.
Carnegie Hall first opened its doors in 1891 and is now a national historic landmark with three venues. It has set the international standard for musical excellence as the aspirational destination for the world’s finest artists.
Radio City Music Hall, located at Rockefeller Center, opened in the 1930s with glamourous art deco style and architecture. Home to the famous Rockettes, tourists flock to the Hall for their annual Christmas Spectacular.
Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts opened in the 1950s as a major performing arts center that would develop and present the finest and brightest in all types of performing arts to a diverse audience drawn from all walks of life. Today, it is not only a cultural center, but also hosts corporate events and conferences, as well as continuing to attract top talent to its stages for philharmonic, film, jazz, chamber music and ballet performances.
See a broadway show — or more! Check out Broadway.com for a full list of all shows and times. You’ll find all Broadway (and off Broadway) shows to enjoy a popular show, or discover new artists.
Browse through the garment district for all of the creative supplies you might want for a project. Find specialty stores full of trims, buttons, specifically focused on Spandex, or linen. Take time to dig through the textile collections at shops with a huge variety. And, know that you will buy something!
Walk through Central Park, New York City’s 843-acre backyard. From carefully maintained formal gardens, to trails through trees perfect for runners and walkers, it provides New Yorkers and visitors a quiet respite from the hussle and bussle of city life. It’s a place to play, relax and breathe a little easier.
Browse through fabric stores in and around New York City. Plan your visit to New York to visit some of these fabric shops.
Knitting or crochet more your thing? Check out some of these great yarn shops during your visit to New York City.
New York is full of bling. Bring back some beads or other supplies for your next beading project.