Joseph Hirshhorn was a Latvian immigrant, a stockbroker, and a uranium magnate. He also had excellent taste in art. The museum named in his honor began with 4,000 paintings and 2,600 sculptures, all of which he donated to the Smithsonian in 1966, forming the world's largest personal collection of modern art. What started as a collection of late 19th century and 20th century works when the museum opened in 1974 has since expanded to include the 21st century in a collection of over 12,000 pieces. The sculpture garden is a must see, with works by greats like Rodin, Matisse, Carpeaux and Koons placed thoughtfully amidst the manicured grass and reflecting pools. The third level has contemporary classics by artists like de Kooning, Man Ray and Warhol, while the second level is reserved for rotating exhibitions (check the website for schedules), and the first floor is reserved for the newest acquisitions. The other things we love about the Hirschorn are the free guided tours (daily on the hour from 12-4PM) and the art films held in the evenings in the Ring Auditorium. It's just too bad that the building looks like a giant concrete doorknob!
- Open Hours: Monday to Sunday from 10:00 AM to 05:30 PM
Arts & Museums
- Nearest Train: Smithsonian