The Guggenheim: Stay for the Architecture…

Fanciest skylight ever.
Fanciest skylight ever.

As an architectural landmark the Guggenheim Museum is totally admirable. The shining white funnel-shaped exterior and the AMAZING interior are certainly worth the 10-ish minute walk up from the Metropolitan Museum on 5th Avenue. But as an art museum experience the Guggenheim leaves me cold. The admission price is too high (a required $22 is STEEP– try to go on Saturdays between 5:45-7:45pm when they have a “pay what you wish” policy) and because the galleries mostly follow the spiraling ramp up, up, up there’s a linearity to their exhibitions that doesn’t appeal. And you can only go up, you can only follow the ramp and their designated narrative path. It’s not the most interesting way for art to be displayed, despite the beauty of the structure. The collection’s focus on late 19th century-now art includes some stunners, but certainly will not appeal to everyone and includes some conceptual stumpers (Richard Prince anyone?) that frustrate even me. Best for Frank Lloyd Wright devotees and modern art junkies, but either way they have a damn fine atrium.


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