Upper East Side

CommunityWalk Map - Museums of the Upper East Side
Museums Visited on the Upper East Side:
Art Museums:
Frick Collection
One of the preeminent small museums in the United States, with an impressive collection of old master paintings and fine French furniture housed in the former mansion of Henry Clay Frick, a partner of Andrew Carnegie.  Art works include some of the best known examples of great European artists such as Rembrandt, Titian, Francisco Goya, Giovanni Bellini, Johannes Vermeer, Pierre-Auguste Renoir and Degas. Located in the "Museum Mile" section of 5th avenue.
     Museum Rating: Pauline: 10, Paul: 8 (out of 10).  
Known to locals simply as "the Gugg,” this museum is architectural icon, New York landmark, and home to an internationally renowned art collection.  Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, the seashell-shaped museum is considered one of the 20th century's greatest buildings.  The permanent collection contains the masters of modern art, such as Picasso, van Gogh, Cézanne, Gauguin, Manet, Monet, Pissarro, and Renoir.  Rotating exhibits display a wide range of high-profile modern and contemporary artists.  Located on the famous "Museum Mile" section of 5th avenue. 
     Museum Rating: Pauline: 9, Paul: 9 (out of 10).  

Neue Gallerie
Extensive collection of turn of the century German and Austrian art from well-known artists like Gustav Klimt, Wassily Kandinsky and Paul Klee.  Collection contains the iconic painting “Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer I” by Klimt, which set the record in 2006 for the highest sum ever paid for a painting ($135 million).  Museum is housed in an elegant former mansion on the "Museum Mile" section of 5th avenue, and has a excellent Viennese-style cafe (Café Sabarsky) on the ground floor serving amazing coffee and deserts.
     Museum Rating: Pauline: 10, Paul: 7 (out of 10). 

Whitney Museum of American Art
Prominent museum of contemporary art devoted to the American avant garde.  Exhibits include painting, sculpture, photography, film and performance art.  Home to the Whitney Biennial, a much-debated event in the art world that exhibits young and emerging American artists, to both critical acclaim and disdain.  
     Museum Rating: Pauline: 7, Paul: 6 (out of 10).  
Asia Society
A global organization devoted to strengthening ties between the U.S. and Asia.  The gallery space is modest, but it displays John D. Rockefeller’s exquisite collection of Asian artifacts interpreted in a variety of exhibits year round.
     Museum Rating: Pauline: 3, Paul: 4 (out of 10).  

Art gallery and cultural center of the Caribbean and Latin America located on the "Museum Mile" section of 5th avenue.  The museum largely focuses on the modern and contemporary art movements of these areas, as well as Latin American artists who have lived in New York City.
     Museum Rating: Pauline: 3, Paul: 3 (out of 10).  

Books and Manuscripts:
Fascinating 126 year old society of printers, bookbinders, editors and book collectors dedicated to furthering the "book arts."  Exhibits take place in the inner sanctum of this normally private society, and focus on topics such as modern fine presses, printing techniques, outstanding private libraries, and the art book binding.
     Museum Rating: Pauline: 8, Paul: 8 (out of 10).  

Design Museums:
Smithsonian museum claiming to be the only museum in the world “devoted to historic and contemporary design.”  Exhibits feature a wide range of design subjects, such as architecture, furniture, vehicles, modern appliances, fashion, and novel inventions.  Museum is in the former mansion of Andrew Carnige, located on the famous "Museum Mile" stretch of 5th avenue.
     Museum Rating: Pauline: 5, Paul: 6 (out of 10).  

Ethnic Museums:
High profile museum of Jewish history and culture located in a former mansion on the "Museum Mile" stretch of 5th avenue.  Upper floors have permanent exhibits on Jewish history containing a diverse collection of 800 artifacts from around the world and representing many time periods.  Lower floors have rotating exhibits of modern and contemporary Jewish art and design.
     Museum Rating: Pauline: 5, Paul: 6 (out of 10).  

Bernard Museum of Judaica
Museum associated with the Temple Emanu-El.  The temple is among the largest houses of Jewish worship in the world and the inside is covered in intricate colorful tiles.  Visitors are allowed to wander in a small portion of the grand temple, but the museum itself seems to be closed.
     Museum Rating: Pauline: 2, Paul: 2 (out of 10).  

History/Historic Building:
Seventh Regiment Armory Conservancy
This historic armory is part military museum, part historic Gilded Age men’s club, and part exhibit hall for ultra modern performance art.  The armory was originally built for the sons of ultra rich NY families around the turn of the century, and its glamorous interiors were designed by the era's most famous designers (e.g. Louis Comfort Tiffany and Stanford White).  Currently the armory is undergoing a long restoration and, to raise money, it's massive drill hall is frequently rented out for extremely large (and quirky) art installations.
     Museum Rating: Pauline: 9, Paul: 8 (out of 10).  
Museum of the City of New York
Exhibits on the history and culture of New York City, located on the "Museum Mile" stretch of 5th avenue.  Upper floor of the museum has a permanent section containing models of historic interiors and a somewhat antiquated maritime museum.  Larger rotating exhibits show a wide range of New York centric topics, such as photography, architecture, performing arts, and city history.
     Museum Rating: Pauline: 6, Paul: 6 (out of 10).

Mount Vernon Hotel Museum and Garden
Historic stone building constructed in 1799 as a carriage house for a 23 acre country estate and converted into a hotel in 1826.  This hotel was a stop over point on the route from New York to Boston, but largely served as a country retreat for middle class New Yorkers looking to escape the city for the day.  The building was restored in the 1930's by the Colonial Dames of America.  Eight period rooms are exhibited, including the Gentleman's Tavern, Kitchen and Ladies Double Parlor.
      Museum Rating: Pauline: 4 Paul: 4 (out of 10).

Museum List of
The Upper East Side
Type     Cost     Pauline's 
Archives of American Art Art Free - -
Museum of American Illustration Art Free - -
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum* Art $15 9*        9*      
Frick Collection* Art $18 10* 8*
Gagosian Gallery Art ? - -
Metropolitan Museum of Art Art $20 - -
Neue Galerie Art $15 10 7
Whitney Museum of American Art Art - Contemporary $18 7 6
Americas Society Art Gallery Art - Culture Free - -
China Institute Art - Culture $7 - -
Queen Sofia Spanish Institute Art - Culture ? - -
Asia Society Art - Culture $10 3 4
Czech Centre New York Art - Culture ? - -
El Museo del Barrio Art - Culture $6 3 3
Museum for African Art Art - Culture Free - -
Grolier Club    Books/Manuscripts   Free 8 8
Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum Design $10 5 6
National Academy of Design Design $10 - -
New York School of Interior Design Gallery     Design Free - -
Bernard Museum of Judaica Ethnic - Jewish Free 2 2
Jewish Museum Ethnic - Jewish $12 5 6
Gracie Mansion Historic Building $7 - -
Mount Vernon Hotel Museum & Garden Historic Building $8 4 4
Seventh Regiment Armory Conservatory Historic Building $12 9 8
Museum of the City of New York History $10 6 6
*Award for Best Museum of the Upper East Side
Tie between the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
and the Frick Collection.