Museums in Boston The Museum of Fine Arts

museum of fine arts

The Museum of Fine Arts (sometimes abbreviated as MFA Boston) is possibly the greatest art museum in the country, reckoned by statistics as having the third-largest collection in the U.S. It houses more than two million works of art, making it one of the most popular museums in the world. It is home to the worlds largest ballet, as well as numerous other artistic exhibitions and programs. MFA also has a reputation for encouraging young artists and preserving their talent.

Massachusetts Academy Of Art

A close up of a stone building

MFA was founded in 1830 as the Massachusetts Academy of Art, which was founded by Samuel Alexander Wilber. The first director was Benjamin Franklin who, among other things, encouraged the growth and prosperity of the museum. In the mid-eteenth century, Alexander Hamilton served as the museum’s first Director. Today there are a number of decorative arts and design schools that offer training in both arts and sciences. In recent years, however, the MFA has seen a number of changes in its management.

A major part of the MFA’s present-day success is the fact that it is one of the few places in America where you can study both arts and sciences. This museum has a long history, going back at least as far as the late 19th century. Most recently, it began hosting a summer exhibit entitled “Furnishings from the American South: The Art of the plantation.” It featured a selection of works from various artists, as well as a telling look at the life and times of the original settlers of Boston. One section focused on the colonial constructions associated with the colony, which included a life-sized bust of King George III.

Robust Presence Of The American South

Background pattern

As one enters the Museum of Fine Arts, one is immediately hit by the robust presence of the American South. Within walking distance of the building, one can find two free-standing monumental statues of horses and men, depicting the arrival of the first African slaves to Boston. Further along the street, a more recent addition is a trio of towering glass-fronted art museums that once housed Impressionist artists. In these churches, you can find works from artists such as Gauguin, de Kooning, and Warhol. In between these are two historic gardens that showcase beautiful specimens of both fruit and flower varieties indigenous to the state of Massachusetts.

Oldest Areas Of Boston

Because the Museum of Fine Arts is located in one of the oldest areas of Boston, many of the local landmarks are easily visible. Two of the most famous, though not necessarily the oldest, are the Old John Pilsworth House and the Boston Massacre Site. Other notable sites include the Science Museum, the Dedication Granary, and the Public Library.

Final Words

As was previously mentioned, this museum is located in Copley Square. One of the first things visitors will notice is the presence of dozens of small cafes and restaurants lining Commonwealth Avenue. One will find himself immediately drawn into the highly popular night clubs located on this street, which were founded by nineteenth century artist August O’Neill. Another favorite pub for many locals is the Red House, which served food and drink before it was opened in 1930. The late 19th century was a period of significant social and political change for Boston, and these pubs represent the essence of what it was like during that time. Within walking distance of many fine arts museums and historical landmarks, this is a convenient location to stay for a truly exciting stay in Boston.

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