The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City

#2 of 21 in Museums in Kansas City
Must see · Art Museum · Museum
Renowned for the building's neoclassical architecture and impressive permanent collection of Asian art, The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art is beloved by Kansas City visitors and locals alike. The museum's Beaux Arts architecture style was inspired by the Cleveland Museum of Art and designed by architects Wight and Wight. A schoolteacher and art lover named Mary Atkins left money for the construction of this museum in 1911, and, though it was originally two separate galleries, the sites merged into one museum in 1983. While the museum is best known and celebrated for its extensive collection of Asian works, especially pieces from imperial China, it also boasts numerous American and European paintings, as well as photography and visiting exhibitions. This site hosts balls, speaker series, and other events year round. Make The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art a centerpiece of your Kansas City vacation itinerary, and find what else is worth visiting using our Kansas City tour itinerary planning tool.
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The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 5.0
3,245 reviews
  • Lots of good art exhibits and even during the pandemic things were clean and we felt safe during our whole experience. Would recommend walking the outside areas as well.  more »
  • I loved this Museum — much more than expected. Is that because we are in a time when we cannot travel to Europe? The building, old, elaborate, ornate, reminded me of so many places in Europe. And.....  more »
  • Recommended as one of the top Art Museums in the country, I had my doubts after living in Washington DC and visiting NYC galleries. I was pleasantly surprised by the modern art in the newer addition. My daughter and I had a great time exploring and reading about the pieces we saw. Also, I was surprised that there wasn't any admission fee to such a great collection of art. This goes along with the welcoming atmosphere that defines KC!
  • Finally made my way to Nelson-Atkins for the amazingly profound 30 Americans exhibit! An experience of a life time captured in a beautiful structure. The museum has a great garden area for chill, a walking path, benches, tables, photo ops & even games. Free entrance however main exhibitions may have costs associated with viewing. Guests speakers on schedule, outdoor sculptures, gift shop, garage parking all available for your convenience.
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