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Tampa Museum of Art: Antiques and Contemporary Art

Tampa is a city with a lot of attractions. One of its popular charms is the Tampa Museum of Art which has a collection of antiquities and art that date back thousands of years and modern exhibitions from local artists. If you need an introduction to this Museum, here's your guide.


The Tampa Museum of Art, located near the Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park at the Tampa Riverwalk, is a cultural institution and a community museum that celebrates the city's diversity.

This Museum provides unique public programs focusing on classical, modern, and avant-garde art. It's normally open from Monday through Wednesday and Friday from 10 am to 5 pm, Thursday from 10 am to 8 pm, and Saturday and Sunday from 10 am to 5 pm.

When was it found?

Founded in 1920, many residents recognize it due to its new building with a huge LED display on its south wall. It was designed by Stanley Saitowitz in 2010 and has become one of the most iconic buildings in Curtis Hixon Park.

As part of the effort to transform the building into a work of art, glass, aluminum, and colorful fiber optic lights adorn the exterior walls making the building seem like "a jewel box sitting on top of a glass pedestal."

The inside is more muted, with predominantly white surfaces and dim lighting. It is described by the architect as a frame to display art on, a blank canvas waiting to be transformed with masterpieces, an empty container to be filled with art.

You're greeted by a large open space when you enter the Museum. To your left are the guest services, the gift shop, and the café, and around the front of the lobby are some seating areas. When you take the magnificent staircase to the second floor, you'll find the galleries and exhibits.

The museum cafeteria's terrace overlooking the river provides a stunning view of Tampa university and the city center.

Tampa Museum of Art and downtown skyscrapers on sunset in Florida

What collections does it showcase?

The Museum's permanent holdings include antiquities, pictures, sculptures, and original modern art pieces. The Verde: Poetics of Shade show, which is now on display, celebrates the work of local artists such as Kendra Frorup, Nneka Jones, Shannon Elyse, and Princess Smith in a range of mediums such as ceramics, sculpture, painting, and embroidery.

Exhibits of classic fashion creations by designers such as Norma Kamali are sometimes included in museum exhibitions. Sometimes the museum exhibitions include displays of iconic fashion works from the likes of Norma Kamali.

A substantial collection of antiquities ancient from Greece and Rome is also kept in the Museum, making it one of the most comprehensive collections in the Southeast. You will find works from artists such as Dimitris Constantin (1858-1870), William James Stillman (1828-1901), C. Paul Jennewein (1890-1978), and Frederick William MacMonnies (1863-1937).

Interesting pieces include the greek Acropolis, bacchante and infant faun, a bust of Homer, a statue of Apollo, and a torso of Aphrodite. Enjoy viewing these pieces of history and learn the stories behind them.

Similarly, the Museum conducts outreach initiatives that give art-based therapy and meaningful ways of creative expression to disadvantaged members of the community. It showcases artists with mental, physical, or personal problems whose work would otherwise not be featured in many museums. There is a lot of wonderful and deep work coming from worldwide.

The outside of the Museum comes to life at dusk, when thousands of colorful LED lights animate its facade, turning the building into a light show.

Signature Events

This year's major events at the Museum include Pride & Passion, pavilion xxxv, and city: fashion + art + culture. The Museum's flagship black-tie event is Pavilion xxxv. The Museum will be celebrating its 35th anniversary this year, intending to generate funds and promote the Museum's exhibitions and community outreach programs. In addition, the Museum will be commemorating its 100th anniversary!

One of the Museum's most popular events is Pride & Passion, which celebrates the LGBTQ+ community's contributions to Tampa's artistic and cultural heritage. Funds raised from the event will benefit the Museum's programs that showcase local talent and provide a safe space for everyone to discover and enjoy art.

How much does the museum charge?

The admission price is $15 for adults $7.50 for Seniors Military, Professional Artists, and Florida Educators. Students are charged $5, while those in college or below six get free passes. This tour lasts approximately 2 hours. Parking is available in the garage behind the Museum for a fee.

Other things to do

The café at the Museum has a view of the Hillsborough River. Enjoy fantastic meals, drinks, and desserts at the Cafe while admiring this view. This café also provides Spanish-Cuban cuisine.

This Museum is located on the iconic Riverwalk, which also has attractions such as the Florida aquarium, the historical trail, a functional WWIII victory ship, and the Tampa Bay History Centre. After touring the Museum, you can visit any of these places for a fun outing with your family. Learn about more Tampa Bay neighborhoods here. Thinking of moving to Florida? Read why Tampa Bay is one of the best spots to be.

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