Guggenheim was born in Philadelphia in 1861 into a wealthy mining family. After becoming a successful businessman, he began collecting Modern Art from 1926 onwards. In 1930, under the guidance of the artist Hilla von Rebay, he bought 150 pieces of art from Kandinsky, which gave way to his Art collection.
The Museum was opened on 21 March, 1959, after 16 years of sketches, blueprints and construction. The architect, Frank Lloyd Wright, was criticised for having made a building that would outshine the Art collection inside.
The building underwent extensive expansion throughout the last decades, the last one in 2008, when the building was modified for its 50th anniversary.
Until the new building was finished, Guggenheim’s collection was located on 54th Street under the name of the Museum of Non-Objective Painting. Three years after the death of Solomon R. Guggenheim in 1949, the Museum was renamed after its founder.
The Museum’s collection has increased over the years and includes work by artists such as Marc Chagall, Vasily Kandinsky, Piet Mondrian, Pablo Picasso, Edouard Manet or Vincent van Gogh.
Due to its limited space and the exchange of artwork between the other Guggenheim museums, the exhibition changes several times a year. The best way of finding out what exhibition is presently in the Museum is checking out their official website.
The Guggenheim Museum offers free guided tours in English every day at 11 am and 1 pm or you can get a free audio guide during the rest of visiting hours.
A Definite Must-See
If only to see one of the most influential buildings of the twentieth century, it is worthwhile visiting the Guggenheim Museum.
From Friday to Wednesday: 10am to 5:45pm (Saturday till 7:45pm).
Thanksgiving, 24 and 25 December: closed
Students and seniors (over 65): $18.
Members and children (below 12): Free entry
Free entry with the New York Pass.