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New Museum of Contemporary Art

New Museum of Contemporary Art (35)

Founded in 1977 by Marcia Tucker, the New Museum is the only museum in the city dedicated exclusively to contemporary art. If you love staying ahead of artistic trends, you can't afford to miss it.

Its founder Marcia Tucker studied at the renowned Institute of Fine Arts at New York University, has organised major ground-breaking exhibitions and was curator at the Whitney Museum from 1969 to 1977, when she was dismissed. She then founded the New Museum and ran it as director for more than 20 years. Marcia Tucker died in 2006 and left a committed, innovative legacy that, without a shadow of a doubt, continues to fuel new art and new ideas.

For all these reasons and more, the New Museum these days is a global reference in terms of contemporary art and artistic trends. The pieces here can't fail to leave an impression on you. Art and politics intermingle in a participatory and provocative context, where the viewer closes and locks the very meaning of the work.

In addition to its exceptional collections, this museum has hosted major exhibitions by contemporary artists from countries such as Argentina, Brazil, Cameroon, China, Cuba, Spain, Turkey and the United Kingdom. If you are a fan of contemporary art, you will probably know the work of William Kentridge, David Wojnarowicz, Ana Mendieta and Andrea Zittel. All of them were discovered here in this museum, in one way or another. To give you an idea of the position of the organisers, suffice to say that the New Museum has been linked to Rhizome, the most important media art platform, since 2003.

Originally the museum was not located at this site, but in an office at 105 Hudson Street in TriBeCa. Today, however, it is housed in a fantastic building at 235 Bowery, which has been a real eye-opener. It is fairly recent, having only been built in 2007 in accordance with the designs of Kazuyo Sejima and Ryue Nishizawa from the Japanese firm SANAA. In 2010 they were awarded the Pritzker Prize, often referred to as the Nobel Prize of architecture because of its global importance and impact.

As you can see, it consists of a series of cubes placed one on top of the other, without following a particular axis, but with tremendous dynamism. Once inside you will realise the great functionality of this innovative structure, which takes full advantage of the space and light. You'll see how the building is incredibly photogenic, especially at sunset.

One last recommendation: make sure you do not miss the New Museum Store, where you will find a selection of books and other contemporary art objects, some of them published by the museum itself. You can also find items that are part of the Limited Edition programme, which started in 1984 and distributes a limited number of highly valuable art pieces, ranging from photographs to sculptures, DVDs and works on paper. They are all fascinating.

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