The Bronx

CommunityWalk Map - Museums of the Bronx
Museums of the Bronx:
Art Museums:
Modern and contemporary art displayed within the halls of a large gated retirement community.  Sculpture garden on grounds has large pieces of modern sculpture and breathtaking views of the Hudson River and Palisades.  Also on display is a model train garden designed by landscape architect Paul Busse, an antique doll collection, a wall of porcelain birds and rotating contemporary art exhibits.  The retirement home also houses the Derfner Judaica Museum, containing Jewish art and artifacts from before the holocaust (see listing below).
     Museum rating: Pauline: 4, Paul: 4 (out of 10). 

Bronx Museum of the Arts
Contemporary art of the 20th and 21st century located in a large modern building on the Grand Concourse in the Bronx.  The museum is best known for exhibits that combine the aesthetic with social commentary (e.g. "One Planet Under A Groove: Hip Hop and Contemporary Art" and "Witness: Perspectives on Police Violence").  Many exhibits are also Bronx centric, focusing on Bronx artists or the art of populations represented in the Bronx, such as Latin America, Africa and Asia.
     Museum rating: Pauline: 7, Paul: 7 (out of 10).

Bronx River Arts Center 
Small gallery space in a South Bronx community center.  The goal of the center is to bring professional arts programming to the culturally underserved population in this area, and the gallery exhibits and rents studio space to local artists.  Currently the center is undergoing a 7 million dollar renovation, but the gallery is still open and in temporary location until the fall of 2012.
     Museum rating: Pauline: 1, Paul: 4 (out of 10). 

Gallery of contemporary art known for its thoughtful curation of national and international works, and emphasis on interactive media.  Located on the campus of Lehman College. 
     Museum rating: Pauline: 6, Paul: 7 (out of 10).

Botanical Gardens:
Large (250 acre) botanical garden, containing a restored Victorian-era conservatory and 50 separate “curated” gardens, including a large azalea collection, magnolia and cherry tree collections, rose garden, herb garden, rock garden, conifer arboretum, wetlands, and 50 acres of un-logged virgin woodlands.  One of the premier botanical gardens in the US. 
     Museum rating: Pauline: 9, Paul: 6 (out of 10).

Historic estate on the Hudson river with lovely landscaped botanical gardens, picnic grounds, and extensive views of the river and Palisades.  Estate also houses a small art gallery focusing on contemporary art inspired by nature.
     Museum rating: Pauline: 6, Paul: 3 (out of 10).


Ethnic Museums:
Jewish art and artifacts documenting European Jewish life and traditions before the holocaust.  Museum is found within a large gated retirement community (the Hebrew Home at Riverdale), which also has a large contemporary art collection and sculpture garden (see Art Collection at the Hebrew Home, listing above).
     Museum rating: Pauline: 5, Paul: 7 (out of 10).

History/Historic Buildings:
Bartow-Pell Mansion
Large, elegant historic mansion (built 1836) with beautifully restored Greek Revival interiors.  The mansion is located in Pelham Bay Park, the largest public park in New York (2,766 acres).  The park is largely forest and marsh land bordering Pelham Bay, with extensive hiking trails and a sizable beach.
     Museum rating: Pauline: 7, Paul: 6 (out of 10).

Edgar Allen Poe Cottage
Small historic house of American author Edgar Allen Poe, located in a tiny park in a traffic island.  House and visitor's center are closed and under construction 2010-12.
     Museum rating: Pauline: 1, Paul: 5 (out of 10).

Hall of Fame for Great Americans
New York landmark founded in 1900 to honor prominent Americans who have had a significant impact on history. The Hall of Fame is an open-air colonnade designed by famed architect Stanford White displaying 98 bronze busts of famous Americans.  A bronze plaque under each bust identifies the person, cites their achievements and a displays a quotation.  Honorees include authors, educators, architects, inventors, military leaders, judges, theologians, humanitarians, scientists, statesmen, artists, musicians and actors.  The hall is located on a terrace behind the Gould Memorial Library on the Bronx Community College campus (originally New York University), overlooking the Harlem River and Fort Tryon Park.
     Museum rating: Pauline: 8, Paul: 5 (out of 10). 

Small historic farm-house.  Its the 2nd oldest house in the Bronx (built in 1758), and home of the Bronx Historical Society.  Contains period furnishings and small exhibits on Bronx history.
     Museum rating: Pauline: 4, Paul: 5 (out of 10).

Historic mansion.  Its the oldest building in the Bronx (built in 1748) and served as headquarters for both sides during the American Revolutionary War.  Tours focus on life in the 1800's and the Revolutionary War.  Located in Van Cortland Park, a massive park and greenbelt area in the Bronx.
     Museum rating: Pauline: 5, Paul: 6 (out of 10).


Maritime Museums:
City Island Nautical Museum
Museum and small library focused on the history of City Island, a small island with a strong seafaring tradition.  Exhibits include an interesting hodgepodge of historical items, from ships log books to the arrowheads of the Siwanoy Indians.  Much of the museum concentrates on the history of City Island's large shipyards, makers of everything from oyster boats to racing yachts, including many America's Cup Winners.
     Museum rating: Pauline: 4, Paul: 5 (out of 10).

Maritime Industry Museum
Extensive maritime museum in Fort Schuyler.  The museum examines the history of the New York harbor and contains many large nautical artifacts, including pieces of ships, shipwrecks, lighthouses and drawbridges.  Museum is largely located in the hallways of a restored pre-Civil War fort next to the water.  Fort also contains classroom space of SUNY Maritime College.
     Museum rating: Pauline: 6, Paul: 8 (out of 10).

*Best of Borough Award for the Bronx: 

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