The largest museum in Maryland, the BMA offers galleries dedicated to modern and contemporary art; European sculpture and painting; American painting and decorative arts; prints and photographs; the arts of Africa, Asia, the Americas, and Oceania; and a 2 3/4-acre sculpture garden with 35 major works by Alexander Calder, Henry Moore, and others. The BMA is famous for its Matisse collection, assembled by Baltimore sisters Claribel and Etta Cone, who went to Paris in the 1920s and came back with Impressionist and modern art. The $4-million Cone Wing showcases their collection of paintings by Matisse, Cézanne, Gauguin, van Gogh, and Renoir. Visit the special room set up to remember these women, featuring drawers filled with their personal things, pieces of furniture, and a virtual tour of their Baltimore apartments. Other highlights include the 35,000-square-foot West Wing for Contemporary Art, with work by Andy Warhol, Jasper Johns, and Baltimorean Grace Hartigan; early American decorative arts and a gallery of miniature rooms; European art that includes Impressionist paintings by Monet and Degas; and the Jacobs Wing, a collection of 15th- to 19th-century European art beautifully displayed in rich jewel-toned rooms. Younger visitors can borrow the ART + FUN packs, which will show them museum pieces on their own level as they listen to music or draw. A summer jazz series in the sculpture garden is another delight.
- © Frommer's 2013
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- Very Highly Recommended 2010