National Museum of African Art, Washington D.C.

National Museum of African Art, Washington D.C.

Smithsonian National Museum of African Art began as a private museum in 1964 and then became part of the Smithsonian Institution in 1979. The museum is subterranean with a beautiful garden planted on top and is connected to the Arthur M. Sackler and Freer Gallery of Art.

A large portion of the artwork comes from areas of Africa south of the Sahara Desert. The collection includes sculptures, musical instruments, paintings, photography, jewelry, and furniture. Masks are also included. There are about 9,000 pieces in the collection including the Walt Disney-Tishman collection.

Part of the museum's focus is education. The Warren M. Robbins library houses an impressive 32,000 volumes on African culture, history, and art. The performing arts are also on display at times with dance and music being performed. Radio Africa provides free streaming so the music of Africa can be heard around the world.

The Museum is located at 950 Independence Avenue, SW on the National Mall. The main entrance is located in the Enid Haupt Garden. Admission is free and docent tours are available at selected times (check before going).

Why You Should Visit:
Much beautiful and symbolic art of all kinds, while the building itself, in its twisting walls and stairs, is clearly part of the attraction.
While there are many outlandish and interesting masks, there are lots of other media as well, and the sculptures are particularly fascinating.
There's usually no noise, no distraction and you have time to look, admire and think.

Tip:
You will need to spend at least a couple hours to explore it all, as each of the 3 levels takes time to really enjoy.

Opening Hours:
Daily: 10am-5:30pm

This sight is featured in a self-guided walking tour of Washington D.C., USA within the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" which can be downloaded from iTunes App Store or Google Play. Please download the app to your mobile phone or tablet for travel directions for visiting this sight. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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National Museum of African Art on Map

Sight Name: National Museum of African Art
Sight Location: Washington D.C., USA
Sight Type: Museum/Gallery
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Washington D.C., USA

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