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Solomon R Guggenheim Museum (New York, USA)

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1071 Fifth Avenue, at 88th Street. Tel: +1 (212) 423 3500. Admission $7 adults and $4 students and senior citizens. Free to accompanied under-12s. Disabled access.

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      21.10.2012 15:02
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      Probably has some good exhibitions at times, but not for me on this occassion

      My sister is a fan of museums and some kinds of Art. I also like some Museums and a little bit of Art, so we to decided to visit the Guggenheim Museum on our recent trip to New York. It is located near central park at 1071 5th Avenue/ 89th street. This was another one of the places to visit in our New York pass deal. First impressions of the building were good; its a sort of spiral type style, with you reaching each floor going around and around. We didnt have to wait in the long queue to get in (thank god!) with our passes. We had not realised at the time that the Museum had a huge exhibition of Picasso on!! We saw some signs outside, but i didnt imagine for one minute that this ehibition would take up about 3/4 of the Museum! If there is one artist i do not like its Picasso! Floor by floor was mostly full of Picasso's work which basically was of no interest to me. There was a little bit of Kadinsky Art, some photography basically of people (which didnt interest me). The museum does have a permanent display of Artwork called the Thannhauser collection some of which was quite good, but due to the huge display of Picasso, i was very dissapointed. It was lucky we didnt actually pay at the door to get in as the Art Museums are quite expensive to get into (around $25). My advice for anyone wanting to visit the Museum is to check first to see what exhibitions they have on and then decide whether it is worth a visit; im sure that the Museum sometimes has some great exhibitions, but this one was simply not to my taste. Due to my dissapointment with this display unfortunately im giving the Museum just 3 stars.

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        11.03.2005 16:04
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        New York is a survivor. Regardless of 9 11, terrorist threats, economic problems, it remains one of the most popular destinations in America. A combination of curiosity of the other side of the pond and cheap flights is drawing more and more of us over to the big apple every year. So in the presumption that some of you readers may well be about to head over this spring or summer I’ve decided to reveal one of my favourite places to visit in New York, The Guggenheim Museum in Soho. A word of warning before you take the name and run in search of it, read my review and find out exactly why, I warn you now the reasons I like the museum is not necessarily going to make it worth the trip for everyone. It’s been 3 years since I last visited the Guggenheim museum, after a long summer spent in New York, my list of places to visit had by the time of my last visit degenerated into re-visiting those I had been to before. Of which the Guggenheim had to be one. So what is The Guggenheim Museum? Silly question don’t you think, after all, its name incorporates the word museum, so it must be a museum. Well no, it’s not a museum it doesn’t house any artefacts or display items reflecting a period or theme so it cant be a museum. Inside its imposing form, the building contains art, paintings to be more specific, the Guggenheim is infact an art gallery. I’m sure that by now you must all be questioning yourselves as to what help my 3 year outdated experience can be to someone wanting to visit today. Surely, anyone visiting will be predominantly interested in which artist is on display now and how I felt about their art. Well, in short, they won’t, the art is not the reason for thousands of visitors flocking through its doors either. The art is in fact the lesser consequence of the museum itself. No one cares which artist is featuring when they plan to visit and no one remembers what artist they saw when they leave. Why because the reason people visit is to see the building, and more importantly how any hung art manages to sit on walls that are curved, and what is it like to view art from the close range of a continual spiralling ramp. The Guggenheim Family After the much-publicised construction of the Guggenheim in Bilbao, the others in the Guggenheim collection have embarked on a strange process. Firstly, they are brushed aside as people clamber to visit this years ‘must see’ museum. Then, after having seen the Bilbao offering many are turning to see others in the collection. In my case, I had first visited the Gugenheim Museum, long before the Bilbao was even dreamt about. Having since been to both, I still feel that the Soho offering must be seen by anyone with an interest in space, gallery’s or architecture. The Guggenheim Museum was the founding building for an ever growing family which later formed the Solomon R Guggenheim Foundation. First established in 1937, the following 60 years has seen the collection grow from one solitary gallery housed in someone else’s space to five galleries spanning Europe and America, three of which have buildings designed especially for Guggenheim group. The founder of the group was a humanitarian by the name of Solomon Guggenheim. Soloman and artist Hilla Rebay had established an interest in establishing a new form of art which could be seen in a new concept of space. So basically they wanted to break free of the white box concept of a gallery and create a space which would be as stimulating as the art within. A concept which was first explored in the creation of the Guggenheim Museum. Each of the Guggenheim galleries deserve a review of their own, so although I can not possibly do them justice during this review I can introduce you to each in turn. · Guggenheim Museum, NY First in the collection, established in 1937 and subject of this review! · Deutsche Guggenheim, Berlin Located on the ground floor of Deutshe Bank, established in 1997 in an effort to expand Guggenheim further into Europe. · Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice Opened in 1951, displaying Peggy Guggenheims personal collection of art. · Guggenheim Hermitage Museum, Las Vegas Opened this year on the ground floor of Las Vegas's Venetian Resort-Hotel-Casino. The Building So with his concept in place, Soloman Guggenheim set about finding an architect who would understand and work with his concept, eventually commissioning one of the major architects of that time, Frank Lloyd Wright. Frank Lloyd Wright initially visualized a building that would go against the strict grid pattern of Manhattan. But soon realised that this breaking free could be moved further than merely the external form taking on curves rather than following Manhattan convention of rectangles. He began to envisage continuous curves which were not only external but curved within forming ramps which provided a journey through the art. The concept was embraced, and the new building opened in 1959. A mixture of excitement and controversy surrounded the opening and years to follow as many found the building the opposite poles of either inspiring or inconvenient. Today the building still functions as an art gallery, and still draws the crowds in search of the experience of viewing art in a curved ramping space. My Experience. I can still remember the first time I saw the museum, although I had seen pictures many times as part of my studies, I hadn’t quite expected the building to have the impact it did. As you approach from the street the building is formidable, with layers upon layers of curves expressing the ramp within. I had expected the building to be far smaller than it actually is. On entrance, it is impossible not to loiter in the foyer and stare up at the internal ramps spiralling above. At the top of the ever decreasing spirals is a glass rooflight from the perspective of standing in the foyer, the rooflight appears to be a bright fullstop to the spirals, which extenuates the darkness of the gaps between concrete ramp to concrete ramp. The entrance fee is paid in the foyer, so there is only so much time you can stand taking in the view before it really does feel like you should move on to make space for the other people coming in and taking in the view. So straight after paying you start of the ramp at each juncture of the ramp, art is on the wall beside you. The ramp is approximately 1.5 to 2meters wide, so it is impossible to stand back and take in the huge paintings on the wall. Your perspective of the wall is also skewed, the ramp is continually curving and with a gentle slope where as the art is rectangular and therefore aligning with nothing. You are sloping, the walls are curving and yet the art is rectangular. Its difficult to get across what a strange sensation this really is, its probably one of those effects you just have to experience for yourself! Bizarrely as I headed onwards and upwards, I found myself looking out over the ramp at art I had just been past. This seemed to be the best way of viewing the actual paintings. From there, it was possible to get distance between yourself and the paintings, but was still not ideal. Off the ramp are a series of more conventional gallery spaces, my advice is don’t be tempted to go into these on the way up, stay on the ramp and get the full effect. On your way back down you pass all of the same galleries, so I think it is better to make the most of these then. The architecture and effect of walking up a continual ramp is far greater than the art displayed, as it is impossible to absorb both, the architecture won for me. Location: The Guggenheim Museum is located in central Manhattan, on a section of Fifth Avenue known by New Yorkers as Museum Mile. So visiting the museum is very convenient and while you are there you can wander along to many of the other museums close by. Probably the most convenient method of getting there is to take the subway. Three trains stop locally to the museum at 86th Street: Either the 4, 5, or 6 stop at 86th Street. From there it is about 5 mins walk via 5th Avenue to 89 street. Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum 1071 5th Avenue (at 89th Street) New York NY 10128-0173 Tel: 212 423 3500 Opening Hours – Entrance Fees Well opening hours are really not a reason to miss it. The Guggenheim is open all year everyday except for Sundays, Thursday and Christmas Day. So unless you are very unlucky you will find a day to visit. From Sat to Wed the galleries are open from 10am – 5.45pm. Friday is the museum’s late opening day, when it is open to 8pm. If you are planning to visit, it is advisable to allow yourself at least 1 or 2 hours to get around without rushing. So try to bare that in mind. Its not a large gallery, but there are lots of moments within the gallery where you may want to stand back and admire an element of the building, or how the building comes together with the art. There is quite a lot of interesting art in the side galleries, so be careful not to miss them if you are going with an interest of the art. You can get a floor plan from the entrance desk, which I would definitely advise. It is very easy to get carried away with the ramping journey and end up missing everything bar the art on the ramp. I’ve visited the gallery about 10 times and generally found that the gallery is never too busy. Apparently, it is advisable to avoid Saturdays though as this as with most attractions tends to be the busiest day. Although we in the UK are now getting very used to free admissions into galleries and museums, the same trend has not headed over to America. In general, you will find that many attractions will have a charge attached, as with the Guggenheim Museum. The Guggenheim relies purely on private funding, so necessity rather than greed means that it is not a particularly cheap option. Tickets prices now are: Adults $15 Students and Seniors (65 years +) with valid ID $10 Children under 12 Free Members Free So that roughly equates to £7-8 per adult. It is possible to buy entrance tickets as part of a city pass. For $53 (£27 approx) an adult can get entrance into: · Guggenheim Museum · American Museum of Natural History · Circle Line Sight Seeing Cruises · Empire State Building · Intrepid Sea Air Space Museum · Museum of Modern Art Pretty good value if you do want to see all of the attractions above, I think it works out approximately half price. One thing to watch for though, is if you do have children there is a charge of £41 for 6-17 year olds, even though on some of the listed attractions without the city pass they would have got entrance for free. So if you are going as part of a family it might be worth checking how the prices stack up. Also group discounts are on offer. If there are 10 or more of you the price per adult is $10. So it is almost worth loitering around outside to see if you can round up 10!!! So if you have made it to the end of the review, then I guess you are interested in visiting, so my advice is do it. The experience really is unique and very rewarding. The one point I would add here though, is that although the internal spaces are all accessible from a wheelchair, I wouldn’t advise taking disabled people there. The ramp really is quite exhausting, and I would guess near impossible to continually push a wheelchair up. Thanks for reading.

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          16.11.2001 16:26
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          ... as my lecturer once famously said. True it may be, but sometimes it's not the best solution. As part of my Computational Linguistics course, I have spent a lot of time discussing the advantages and disadvantages of top down and bottom up processing. There are certain circumstances in which top down is not the way to go - with recursion for example, if you go top down left to right you'll find your program never ends, which is not exactly helpful.... There are many more examples, but I'll stop there since most of you will have no idea what I'm talking about. What I will say is that this applies to the Guggenheim, but in reverse if you see what I mean. Top down is the only way to go. Allow me to explain.... The Solomon R Guggenheim Museum has a slightly unusual structure to say the least. It is basically coil shaped, like an ice cream cone, getting wider as you go up. Note the up - the pathways are slanted slightly so as you go round you also change level so you can go on forever, or at least until the building runs out. This is where the top down approach comes in. Most people go in and pay, and then start walking upwards. By the time they get to the top they begin to regret this, and realise they should have done what I and a few others (who had probably read the same guide book that recommended doing so) did - take the lift to the top floor and start there, letting gravity give you a helping hand on the way down. Now you know the best way to see the works on display, so all that's left now is to let you know whether or not it's worth bothering going in the first place. There are two Guggenheims in New York, but he one I, like most people, went to was the main one in the Upper East Side. For details of the SOHO one, and details of those in Spain, Germany, Italy and, erm, Las Vegas, check out the official website : www.guggenheim.org Opening Hours - - - - - - - - Museum Hours < br>SUN–WED, 9 AM–6 PM Closed THURS FRI–SAT, 9 AM–8 PM <br> Museum Shop Hours SUN–WED, 9:30 AM–6:30 PM THURS, 10 AM–6 PM (how can there be demand for the shop to open when the museum doesn't? What sort of people do the shop and not the works themselves???) FRI–SAT, 9:30 AM–8:30 PM Entrance Fees (as of November 2001) - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - Adults $15 Students and Seniors (with valid ID) $12 Children under 12 Free Visitors - - - - - - Quite a wide range, from art connoisseur types to foreign tourists “doing” New York to families who bring their kids for a little culture and the fun of running up and down spiral walkways. Displays - - - - - - - - There are two types of displays – permanent ones in the annexes off the Rotunda, and temporary ones in the main entrance hall and on the pathways up the spiral. At the moment they have an exhibition of Brazilian art and jewellery along with their usual collection of Picassos and Manets and Legers. To be honest, the layout of the building was better than anything else – gorgeous wooden floors and sparkling white walls complemented the beautifully designed roof (the work of Frank Lloyd Wright) more than any of the art pieces did. Getting There - - - - - - - - - - Situated to the East of Central Park, the museum is easy to get to. The nearest subway is 86th Street which is served by lines 4, 5 and 6. Busses M1, M2, M3 and M4 to Fifth Avenue are also available. If you’re driving, there are a number of carparks in the vicinity, including one on 89th which offers discounts to Guggenheim visitors on production of a validated Guggenheim ticket stub. Extras - - - - - - There are toilets on every “floor” but these are scarily large – basically whole rooms with just a little loo in the corner. On the ground floor to the left of the ticket office is a quite extensively stocked shop which offers, among other things, notebooks and t-shirts emblazoned with “Guggenheim Bilbao”….. They have items to do with temporary exhibits too, which often museums do not, and I bought my sister a Brazilian Christmas present while I was there. There is a restaurant and a Café, both on the ground floor too, but I didn’t venture inside, preferring instead to grab a Pretzel from one of the vendors outside. You might have noticed how little I wrote about the displays and this reflects what I though – in other words I wasn’t all that impressed. This place is supposed to have “one of the world’s finest art collections” but if it did then they kept it well hidden…. I’m glad I went but it definitely wouldn’t be a visit I’d wish to repeat again soon - $12 not well spent in my opinion.

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            13.11.2000 23:23
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            The Guggenheim Museum is a monster of a building designed by Solomon R. Guggenheim as a museum of modern art. It has enjoyed great success and popularity, both for its exhibitions and for the uniqueness of the building. Located opposite Central Park on the East Side, at 89th Street (note that there is also a downtown Guggenheim Museum in SoHo, housing an exhibition of work by Andy Warhol), it is essentially a three-dimensional spiral, which you walk up (going past all the exhibition rooms as you do, so it’s impossible to miss anything) until you realise that you’ve quite unexpectedly reached the top. There is only one room with a permanent collection of paintings, although the quality of these is very high – mostly late 19th century works by Van Gogh, Cezanne and co. There is another room further up that is devoted to exhibitions of paintings, which was the site of an excellent exhibition of very avant-garde cubist paintings by various Russian and Eastern European women when I visited. Other rooms house more unusual displays, such as features on Armani designs. There is also a room documenting the success of the second Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao (in Spain) and explaining plans to build yet another museum in downtown Manhattan, looking out onto the river. It goes without saying that the designs for both of these buildings are superb, making them worthy successors. There are also galleries in Venice and Berlin. Though it does not compare in size to the Metropolitan Museum of Art or even the MoMA (whose proximity, by the way, makes it possible to visit both on the same day), the Guggenheim is an unmissable attraction of Manhattan, and if you visit on Friday or Saturday evening you can hear live jazz – check their website, www.guggenheim.org, for details.

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            19.07.2000 09:13
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            The Solomon R Guggenheim Museum is probably the best known modern art museum in the world. It's located on 5th Avenue in New York, on Museum Mile, just to the east of Central Park. Arguably, the building itself is the most impressive part of the museum. It was designed by architect Frank Lloyd Wright and finished in 1959 shortly after his death. It consists of a spiral-like structure attached to a more conventional oblong tower. The spiral region, known as the Great Rotunda, accounts for most of the gallery's floor space, and it is somewhat surprising then that this area is given over to exhibitions which change every few months. These temporary exhibitions invariably consist of some of the world's finest pieces of contemporary and modern art. When I visited the gallery in September 1999, there was a superb collection of surrealist paintings including works by Dali, Tanguy, Magritte and Miro. Currently, the Great Rotunda is playing host to an exhibition entitled 'Amazons of the Avant-Garde' - a collection that has done the rounds of the other Guggenheim museums. The exhibition consists of work by 20th-Century female Russian painters, who show heavy influences of the futurist and cubist schools of modern art. The spiral ramp around the Great Rotunda is unexpectedly long, and while the gentle slope may seem unchallenging at the beginning, by the time you reach the top, you will almost certainly be exhausted. I therefore strongly recommend taking the elevator to the top, and then walking down the ramp – your legs will thank you for it! The adjoining Tower contains the Guggenheim's permanent collection, which includes some of the finest contemporary art in the world. This includes several works by Kandinsky, Picasso, Manet, and Leger. In addition to the Tower and Great Rotunda galleries, there are further works on display in the Small Rotunda (the Thannhauser collection of Impressionist and Post-Impressi onist art - including works by Cezanne, Degas, Pissarro and van Gogh) and in the small sculpture terrace overlooking Central Park. There is truly an exemplary collection of work by 19th and 20th-century artists on display here, and anyone with an interest in contemporary art is going to want to spend at least three hours touring the galleries. However, with the exception of the sculpture terrace, and a few installations in the Tower galleries, there are few media other than paintings generally featured here. The lighting throughout the gallery is excellent, especially in the Great Rotunda. The gallery can get quite busy, but it's quite large enough to comfortably accommodate its many visitors. However, some areas of the Small Rotunda can get quite crowded.

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              10.07.2000 00:24
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              As soon as you see the Guggenheim, you are overwhelmed by the sheer beauty of the building. Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, it is an elegant spiral that contrasts completely with the surrounding buildings. Inside, the architecture is even more beautiful, as the spiral winds its way up, linking otgether all the galleries. The best way to see all the paintings is to take the elevator right to the top, then slowly walk down the spiral. You see the featured artist's work in the spiral, and at every floor, you can go off into a separate room to see other art. The building is especially beautiful in the evening, but admission is so cheap, you could go in the day as well when daylight floods through the skylight. The main exhibition changes regularly, and if they are in the process of refurbishing or re-hanging, the admission is often free. The gift shops are also high quality, with very nice posters and art themed gifts. The museum is surprisingly small, so don't expect a lot of the art in the collection to be on display. However, you can spend a lot of time wandering around. I think that this is a must-see museum in New York.

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              03.07.2000 05:46

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              Hello, If you are on a trip in Manhattan, don't miss the Guggenheim Museum. It could be that will see something you are not interested in but the building is the best museums building I had ever seen. Go with the elevator to the top and start to go in the circles. From time to time you have to visit a room. It is not a very big building and the gallerie is not the biggest. I am not a person who like to spend a lot of time in a museum but I like to see everything. I saw a very intersting exhibition. There were a lot of multi media. Aqua TV or TV garden. TV peoples and big events on the wall... The only bad thing is that you have to catch a taxi or you have to walk two avenues and two or three streets...

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