Celebrating Museum Advocacy Day

by: Smith and Howard

February 23, 2016

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Atlanta is fortunate to have so many quality museums for residents and visitors to explore. While the High Museum of Art is perhaps the pinnacle of what most of us think of when we hear “museum”, you might be surprised at just how wide ranging the focus of Atlanta’s museums really is. To celebrate National Museums Advocacy Day (February 23) we have put together a quick (not all-inclusive) guide to some of Atlanta’s museums. 

High Museum of Art: The High not only contains works of art, it is one. Located on Peachtree Street at 16th Street and designed by architects Richard Meieand Renzo Piano, this exquisitely modern structure is featured as much on photography sites about the High as is the actual art inside. The High’s website describes the museum this way, “With over 15,000 works of art in its permanent collection, the High has an extensive anthology of 19th and 20th century American and decorative art, significant holdings of European paintings, a growing collection of African American art, and burgeoning collections of modern and contemporary art, photography, folk art and African art. The High is also dedicated to supporting and collecting works by Southern artists.

Children’s Museum of Atlanta: The Children’s Museum (CMA) exists to “spark imagination and inspire discovery and learning for all children through the power of play.” Located downtown near Centennial Olympic Park, CMA can be a fun and imaginative stop for your children when visiting downtown Atlanta. With exhibits focusing on “robots, waffles and rockets” and a chance on Saturdays to “Eat a Georgia Rainbow,” there is something for every visitor.

Millennium Gate Museum: Many people drive by the beautiful Millennium Gate in Atlantic Station without ever realizing it is a museum. Over the past few years, this hidden jewel has hosted notable exhibits including The Art of Diplomacy – Winston Churchill and the Pursuit of Painting and Transcending Vision: American Impressionism 1870–1940. Through August 14, 2016, the museum features the Georgia Pioneer Gallery, focusing on General Oglethorpe’s creation of the Colony of Georgia. Included in this gallery are documents and historical artifacts from the Native Indian, Spanish, British Colonial and American Revolutionary periods.

The Breman Museum: Located in Midtown less than a mile from the Millennium Gate Museum, the Breman Museum is “dedicated to making the lessons of the Holocaust and the history of the Southern Jewish experience available to the general public.” The museum features a permanent exhibition, Absence of Humanity: The Holocaust Years. For children of any age, the Maurice Sendak exhibition of “Where the Wild Things Are” engages visitors with multi-media components including the famed “chicken soup” slide, a dress up area and activity stations where children can let out their inner Wild Things.

Atlanta Botanical Garden: The Garden, located next to Piedmont Park, exists to “develop and maintain plant collections for display, education, research, conservation and enjoyment.” This mission is fulfilled in 30 acres that include a one-of-a-kind a canopy walk through woodlands, indoor collections at the Fuqua Conservatory and Fuqua Orchid Center, and outdoor gardens featuring water plans, edibles, roses, a Japanese garden and much more. 

Atlanta History Center: Located in Buckhead, the Atlanta History Center features Georgia history lessons and artifacts from the Civil War to the 1996 Centennial Olympic Games. In addition to the History Center, the 33 acre property includes two historic houses – the 1928 Swan House and the 1860s Smith Family Farm. The Goizueta Gardens, featuring 22 acres of historic gardens and trails are available to visitors to the Center, offering a quiet respite in the middle of bustling Buckhead.

Fernbank Museum of Natural History: Fernbank Museum’s mission is to “inspire life-long learning of natural history through immersive programming and unmatched experiences to encourage a greater appreciation of our planet and its inhabitants.” This unique museum accomplishes this in part by being home to the world’s largest dinosaurs. It also houses Atlanta’s IMAX screen (the city’s largest) where children can enjoy National Parks Adventures and adults take part in Martinis & IMAX. 

How’s that for a start? Look for more in March as we approach National Museum Day – and email us here with your favorite Georgia museums. 

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