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“Too much technique, not enough art.” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Contemporary Arts Center

Contemporary Arts Center
44 E Sixth St, Cincinnati, OH 45202 (Central Business District)
513-345-8400
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Ranked #48 of 85 attractions in Cincinnati
Type: Art Museums
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Attraction Details
Owner description: Reputed for its thought-provoking and innovative paintings, photography and other arts, this center, founded in 1939, is in a new six-story building that is a work of art itself, with fascinating features both inside and out.
Cincinnati
Top Contributor
92 reviews 92 reviews
20 attraction reviews
Reviews in 27 cities Reviews in 27 cities
39 helpful votes 39 helpful votes
“Too much technique, not enough art.”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 26, 2012

Over the thirty plus years, I have been visiting the Cincinnati Contemporary Arts Center, I have appreciated many excellent exhibits and events. Somewhere along the way, the museum collection has become increasingly trivial and superficial. My impression is that this devolution began with the move to its new building (more about that later). Many of the exhibits are clever exercises in technique rather than meaningful and affecting works of art. They ultimately left an empty feeling. Once you've seen them, they're easy to forget. Maybe that's the inevitable direction of contemporary art...disposable. The current exhibit on the music video will probably attract new visitors but it seemed like something you could have downloaded and played at home on a big screen TV.

I'm not in love with the building. It cost a fortune. The interior is cold and empty and warehouse-like with a staircase that is awkward to use. We visited shortly after the museum moved to this much-touted building. We noticed that already the drywall was scuffed and dented and that the cheap carpeting was coming unglued and fraying.

My rating is really a 2.5. The 3 is for good memories of exhibits past and the hope that the museum will seek exhibits with greater depth and meaning. The museum staff we encountered were gracious and very helpful.

Visited August 2012
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35 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Japanese first
  • Any
English first
Ramat Gan, Israel
Top Contributor
106 reviews 106 reviews
70 attraction reviews
Reviews in 37 cities Reviews in 37 cities
37 helpful votes 37 helpful votes
“good will is not enough”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 15, 2012

Too modern for my taste the music too loud and the creations and the art display above and beyond my understanding Got away disappointed well may be next time I will have a better undrtanding

Visited August 2012
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Northampton
Top Contributor
69 reviews 69 reviews
24 attraction reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
“Free on Monday Nights”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 19, 2012

The only woman to win the Pritzker---Shaha Abid's first North American building. So much to see, and I happened to walk by and saw it was open until 9pm on Monday...and better yet, admission is free on Mondays thanks to underwriting sponsors.

Visited July 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cincinnati, Ohio
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
5 attraction reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
“come on”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 15, 2012

Wonderful building especially from the outside, but most of the exhibits are "cutting edge"....you know, a pile of rocks, or plastic bags filled with different colored polystyrene balls.....this joke's getting old .

Visited October 2011
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cincinnati, Ohio
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Great Art and Architecture!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 10, 2012

Always an interesting exhibition taking place as well as one of the coolest buildings downtown! Take the architecture tour its very interesting!

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