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“Great Experience!!”

American Visionary Art Museum
Ranked #5 of 234 things to do in Baltimore
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Be prepared for the unusual and imaginative at this museum housing works by non-mainstream artists, including the "whirligig", a 55-foot wind-powered sculpture, a 10-foot model of the Lusitania made entirely out of match sticks and a mobile that spans three floors.
Baltimore, Maryland
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Great Experience!!”
Reviewed October 1, 2012

This is an awesome experience for us parents as well as the kids! The exhibitions are fascinating and always spark conversation! Thoroughly recommended!!

Visited September 2012
Thank Shaun G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,331 reviews from our community

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Laguna Niguel, California
Level 6 Contributor
174 reviews
49 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 87 helpful votes
“Eclectic, colorful and fun art museum”
Reviewed September 30, 2012

We discovered this quirky art museum last year searching for things to do on our umpteenth trip to Baltimore to visit relatives. We’ll be back every year. We like to start with lunch upstairs on the terrace outside at Mr. Rain’s Fun House with a table at the railing so we can watch up close the gigantic kinetic “whirlybird’ sculpture as it spins in the breeze while we look down on the Hobbit-like garden below. There’s also inside seating and a bar. The food is good and eclectic as the museum.

Making our way inside, everywhere you turn is a visual delight. The museum houses art by people with a passion or obsession, many of them self-trained and following their own muse. The pieces are colorful and complex, some extremely small and others extremely large, and many are made from found or ordinary objects like paper plates, bottle caps, mirror, beads, toothpicks, sock yarn, and the like. The artists and their stories are well documented so it can take a lot of time to make your way through the exhibits. Make sure you visit the garden and the building across the courtyard for the very large pieces, like a giant mirrored egg (makes a great photo), the large display of wooden mechanical toys you can operate, and the exhibit of Baltimore screen painting—the video is fascinating. When we visited, the special exhibit was All Things Round, including a giant ball of bras.

Don’t forget to reserve time to stop by the gift shop that’s chock full of jewelry, gadgets, art, and books, plus eclectic items you can use to create your own art. We brought back four silk scarves, a necklace of wool beads, a felt flower garland, and a slinky silver bracelet. I’ve no idea what I’ll do with them but they still make me smile. It’s not for every taste, but a visit makes for a delightful afternoon you won’t find anywhere else.

Easy metered parking on the side street nearby.

Visited August 2012
Thank TooMuch2Do
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 6 Contributor
105 reviews
27 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 68 helpful votes
“very nice layout, great experience”
Reviewed September 22, 2012

3 buildings, spread out so you can wander through them all, very interesting visual art throughout, well worth a visit if you have time to spend in Baltimore.

Visited September 2012
1 Thank RexKite
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Girard Ohio
Level 5 Contributor
70 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
“So Unusual & Interesting”
Reviewed September 19, 2012

While this museum is a little hard to find, it is within walking distance of the Inner Harbor. The museum is appropriate for any age and makes one admire how much work some people put into their version of art.

Visited September 2012
1 Thank GrandmaK1039
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Charlestown, Maryland
Level 6 Contributor
94 reviews
20 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
“Much more interesting than expected”
Reviewed September 19, 2012

I brought one of my kids here as a time filler, and then it quickly became one of the most interesting activities of the day. I have returned several times since and each time is more facinating than the last. Everyone should go when visiting Baltimore and the Inner harbor area.

Visited November 2011
1 Thank Geoffrey D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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