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The Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago

4.8
#1 of 53 in Museums in Chicago
Must see · Art Museum · Museum
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Developed from a free art school and gallery started in the 1860s, The Art Institute of Chicago now holds a permanent collection of more than 300,000 artworks. One of its most beloved paintings is George Seurat's Pointillism masterpiece "A Sunday on La Grande Jatte." Exhibits spread over eight buildings include Impressionist and Post-Impressionist art, with additional holdings of Old Masters, European and American decorative arts, and industrial and graphic design. Highlights include paintings by American artists Grant Wood and Edward Hopper, as well as Monet, Renoir, Cezanne, Matisse, van Gogh, and Picasso. The main building itself counts among the city's major landmarks, featuring two bronze lions guarding its main entrance. Check the online calendar for special events and temporary exhibits, which often require separate time-stamped tickets. Save time by purchasing your tickets in advance. Because the museum covers so much ground, it helps to map out exhibits you particularly want to see before you start exploring. Before you head to Chicago, plan trip itinerary details with our user-friendly Chicago trip maker tool, to make sure you see all that Chicago has to offer, including The Art Institute of Chicago.
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The Art Institute of Chicago reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 5.0
24,230 reviews
Google
4.8
TripAdvisor
  • The Art Institute of Chicago is a city treasure. People come from far to visit this gem. Again safety is a issue right now and many people are hopeful that soon, we can feel safe to enjoy the... 
    The Art Institute of Chicago is a city treasure. People come from far to visit this gem. Again safety is a issue right now and many people are hopeful that soon, we can feel safe to enjoy the...  more »
  • A must-see location that is worth the money and the time. I like the photography exhibits in the basement. They never disappoint. While there, I paid more and saw the Cezanne exhibit. 
    A must-see location that is worth the money and the time. I like the photography exhibits in the basement. They never disappoint. While there, I paid more and saw the Cezanne exhibit.  more »
  • What a fun time! So many interesting exhibits. Be sure to grab the map when you enter- it is easy to get turned around and miss something really neat. 
    What a fun time! So many interesting exhibits. Be sure to grab the map when you enter- it is easy to get turned around and miss something really neat.  more »
Google
  • Massive. Well curated. Great variety. Walks of all life. Good value. I went in with an open mind and not quite sure what to expect. After one hour I had explored just the ground floor. After 3 more hours I had swiftly explored and pondered through the other floors. The modern art area was by far my favorite! If you're unsure about coming, please let this be the sign you were looking for.
  • Life-Changing. I'm a museum nerd, I have gone to the Prado in Madrid, The New York Met, the LA county Museum of Art. This one floored me. Its the best museum I have ever been to. As I walked through the galleries, I began to softly shed tears of joy numerous times. It kept happening, again and again. The experience was otherworldly. I had no idea many of the works I saw were actually in the museum. It was like flipping through a picture book of, "Famous artworks," only they were there in front of me. One can learn a graduate level class worth of art history by simply visiting on a slow day and paying close attention. On top of that, the artwork is expertly displayed, in beautiful buildings and galleries. And you simply know that it really is the best that the world has to offer. At the Chicago Institute of art, I am not a solitary individual. No, instead I'm part of a glorious, planetary-wide tradition, spanning multiple millennia.
  • This is an excellent museum; perhaps the best in the Midwest! You can read all the other reviews for the highlights (and my god, there are some great masterpieces here)! I have to say, though, my favorite exhibit is the pottery. They have an enormous collection of ancient Chinese pottery—something about the smooth lines, the gorgeous glazes, and the sweeping curves… it just does it for me! You could spend all day in here, easily, and admission is well worth the price!
  • The Art Institute is my happy place. Their exhibits alone make The AI noteworthy. But exploring the exhibits and displays you don't often hear about is where the true magic lies. A must is the miniature rooms in the basement. Love love love. Your imagination will go wild.
  • I live in Chicago and absolutely love The Art Institute. I've spent countless hours revelling in the beautiful collections. I've done quite a bit a traveling and have visited many other world-class art museums. The Art Institute can more than hold its own against any of them. Please come see for yourself. We Chicagoans love sharing all the beautiful things our city has to offer!!

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