Today’s art scene is more globalized than ever before. While art havens like Paris, London, and Barcelona are breathtaking, we love exploring "understated" art hubs just as much. Take a look at our Top 3 Bucket List Travel Destinations before planning your next artistic journey!
The Top 3 Cities for Art Lovers
Cape Town, South Africa
Cape Town’s complex political history is what makes its art so intriguing. With its politically-charged street murals and unique artistic experiences, Cape Town is putting contemporary African art on the map!
In 2017, Cape Town opened Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Arts, also known as MOCAA. Not only is it the largest museum on the continent--it houses the largest collection of contemporary African Art in the world! MOCAA’s mission of showcasing and celebrating African artists is important in a global art scene where African art has been severely overlooked.
Have a craving for even more authentic adventures? Look into the Maboneng Township Experience! Maboneng’s team has turned over 50 residential township homes on the city's outskirts into galleries that collectively feature more than 40 local artists! Their tours offer guests the opportunity to appreciate amazing art that might never be displayed in an established art gallery. Meet the artists in intimate home settings, purchase their artwork, and take an artist-led workshop in mosaic-making, denim-painting or cooking!
Mexico City, Mexico
Over the past decade, there's been an explosion of global interest in Mexican, Latin, and South American art. Whether you are viewing Aztec ruins, visiting Frida Kahlo’s home, or exploring modern art galleries, Mexico City has it all -- including something just for you!
Mexico City was built right on top of the ancient Aztec capital of Tenochtitlan. If Meso-American architecture interests you, check out the Aztec’s Templo Mayor. It is a well-known excavation near the central Metropolitan Cathedral.
If you have time to venture out of the city, are in good physical condition, and have absolutely no fear of heights whatsoever, visit Teotihuacan and climb one or two Pre-Hispanic pyramids—the Temple of the Moon and the Temple of the Sun. (Our designer has climbed several smaller pyramids in Mexico. These two were just a bit too daunting for her. It was enough for her to visit this amazing place, absorb its history and significance, and watch her husband gamely make his way to the top of the Temple of the Sun.)
Casa Azul is a must-see for Frida Kahlo enthusiasts. The artist’s colorfully-furnished home houses some of her most groundbreaking pieces. But if you are limited on time, opt to see her work (and that of her husband, Diego Rivera) at the Museo Casa Estudio Diego Rivera y Frida Kahlo.
As for museums and art galleries, Mexico City has too many to count! Click here for a thorough list of options and complete your trip with a street art tour! Follow the Street Art Chilango Instagram account for an updated list of street art or visit here to find Diego Rivera’s vibrant mural masterpieces.
For shopping, visit one of Bazar Sabado’s weekly outdoor markets featuring local artwork and clothing from Mexico’s most innovative fashion designers.
Beijing's rich history and ultra-modernism constantly juxtaposes ancient China against a contemporary art scene.
Start your trip at the Forbidden City, the largest imperial palace in the world and home to 24 Ming Dynasty emperors. It will take nearly two or three hours to view the extensive living quarters, lush gardens, and detailed artwork. The Palace Museum alone boasts one of the largest collections of Chinese art in the country! Fifteen million people visit this site annually, so expect a crowd when you show up. (If you arrive during the summer months, be sure to slather on the sunscreen and either carry a pretty sun-protective umbrella or wear a hat. All of the smart, prepared people will have done this.)
Beijing itself is an artistic work in progress. A leisurely walk through the city center is a feast for the eyes. On one street, you will see traditional Chinese architecture. On the next block, there can be futuristic skyscrapers.
Contemporary art lovers can head to 798 Art Zone, one of Beijing’s latest and edgiest tourist attractions. This colorful Bauhaus-style neighborhood is the pulse of China’s contemporary art scene with galleries like Ullens Center for Contemporary Art (UCCA) and Pace Beijing Showcase. Here you will find both local and international art, including pieces by Yoko Ono and Ai Wei Wei.
For a more extensive list of Beijing's art galleries and shops, visit the link here.
Which of these bucket list travel destinations are you planning to visit? Comment below--we want to hear from you!
Whenever you time your visit, be sure to bring along your CBoss Coat! Stay cozy and stylish on your art adventures, wherever they may take you!