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“What a gem!”

Des Moines Art Center
Ranked #8 of 66 things to do in Des Moines
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: This internationally acclaimed museum houses impressive works by artists of the 19th and 20th centuries, including Edward Hopper, Georgia O'Keefe and Henri Matisse. The center, which also offers art classes, consists of three buildings, each designed by a celebrated architect: Eliel Saarinen, I.M. Pei and Richard Meier.
Bayahibe, Dominican Republic
Level 6 Contributor
130 reviews
35 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
“What a gem!”
Reviewed April 29, 2013 via mobile

Wondered over (literally) on the advice of our BnB hosts across the street. What a lovely surprise! The Transparencies exhibit was amazing...I spent twenty minutes watching the spiders dance across the lighted chandelier! (Can't remember the artist's name...but, the docent was great!) I loved that the docents approached us and wanted to tell us about the pieces in their "room". This is a place that should be visited again and again to take it all that it offers...

Visited April 2013
Thank NeophyteHiker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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224 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
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English first
West Des Moines, Iowa, United States
Level 3 Contributor
23 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“A First Class Experience in Des Moines”
Reviewed April 17, 2013

For a smaller city, this museum seems to attract some extraordinary shows or special items. Spacious allowing for different types of art work, but never a sense of noise. Generally good parking available for this new-ish facility.

Visited November 2012
Thank Ric L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 5 Contributor
49 reviews
17 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“Jewel of the Midwest”
Reviewed April 8, 2013

I am never disappointed by a trip to the Des Moines Art Center. The current exposition on Transparencies is really very, very good...I just wish that the museum would sell a book or postcards as a souvenir of the visit. If you don't go with a notepad, it is sometimes hard to recall the names of artists to see more of their work or study the concept in depth.

And I have to say that it's my favorite place in the world to eat lunch...the soup of the day during our visit was a carrot bisque...such a beautiful presentation. The servers are charming, and the food is simple but intriguing...and delicious.

Visited April 2013
Thank jojofrance2009
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Des Moines, Iowa
Level 4 Contributor
37 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“Lots to see and if it's around lunch, eat!”
Reviewed March 28, 2013

Museum is composed of three architecturally significant buildings (Saarinnen, Pie and Graves) with an art collection veering on near modern. Grounds have several wonderful art installations. Cafe is open for lunch M-F; very well-prepared lunch fare with soups, salds, sandwhiches.

Visited March 2013
Thank notbeenthere_11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Creston, Iowa
Level 3 Contributor
21 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“WORLD class art, architecture.”
Reviewed March 20, 2013

If you've never visited the Des Moines Art Center, you WILL be pleasantly surprised. Cutting edge acquisitions, international art, beautiful building. NIce restaurant too! And don't forget to visit the downtown sculpture park!

Visited March 2013
Thank Julia W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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