Disclosure: I received complimentary admission to Milwaukee Art Museum in exchange for writing about my experience in Milwaukee. This assistance in no way affects the opinions expressed in my posts about the city. All opinions are my own.
The variety of activities in Milwaukee is pretty amazing. Whether you want to indulge in the outdoors, eat your heart out at local restaurants, try out craft beer, or even spend hours perusing a museum, Milwaukee’s got it all.
Speaking of museums, the Milwaukee Art Museum is one of the city’s highlights. It was Milwaukee’s first art gallery, is over 100 years old, and has 30,000 works of art. It sees over 400,000 visitors per year but it’s easy to understand why that’s the case: the building itself is phenomenal (it’s known for its signature wings on the outside, which were down the entire time I passed by it, unfortunately), and the exhibits on display are intriguing.
I spent about two to three hours at the Milwaukee Art Museum, several minutes of which were devoted to admiring the building. The space is 341,000-square-feet big with four floors and an alluring view of the lakefront.
Took some time to grab a bite to eat as well and the food was pretty good!
After perusing the galleries, it didn’t take long to identify my favorite works of art: Untitled by Larry Bell (made with vacuum glass), Walk-In Infinity Chamber by Stanley Landsman (this reminded me of the Infinity Room at The Broad, though I do prefer Yayoi Kusama’s piece), and Edge of England by Cornelia Parker.
Walk-In Infinity Chamber by Stanley Landsman
Edge of England by Cornelia Parker
And another highlight was MMPI (Self-Portrait in Yellow) by Tony Oursler, which initially struck me as odd because it’s basically a head pinned to the ground by a chair that talks and says a bunch of random phrases like “Stealing is okay under special circumstances,” “Animals are better than people,” and “Communication is possible without speech.” I must’ve spent several minutes longer on that exhibit compared to others, because how often do you see talking heads at an art museum?
After doing some research I learned that MMPI stands for “Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory,” which is a test that was formerly highly regarded for psychological assessment. More about that is available here if you’re interested.
In addition to those, there’s so much more at the museum. Landscape and nature paintings were other pieces that caught my eye.
As did many works of art.
Art made with buttons and glue
Admission to the Milwaukee Art Museum is $17 for adults and $15 for students and seniors (65+). It’s the perfect activity for those who appreciate art and if it’s too hot or too cold to be outside.
Also within walking distance from the museum are other Milwaukee gems, Discovery World and Lakeshore State Park, which I’d highly recommend visiting.
Note: As of this post, some exhibits featured here are no longer on display.