Best Asian Art Museums

No matter what type of a person you are, chances are that you have come across a piece of Asian art at least once in your life. Asian art stretches back throughout the millennia and is well-known for its calligraphic painted pieces as well as the famous manga and anime cultures. But what are some of the best places to visit if you want to know more about Asian art and familiarize yourself with the enchanted pieces that came from this ancient continent?

Japan Society, New York, NY

Japan Society is a famous Asian art museum founded in 1907 as a form of bonding the Western and Eastern cultures together. You can find contemporary and modern art in Japan Society and the exhibitions change based on the season of the year. Some of the most famous exhibitions have covered pieces dedicated to felines, manga exhibitions as well as “kawaii” subculture pieces.

Museum of Contemporary Art, Taipei, Taiwan

If you are traveling through Taiwan and are interested in contemporary Asian art, the Museum of Contemporary Arts in Taipei should be on your radar. Set in a 1920’s elementary school building, this museum offers a look at regional artists and styles that are predominant throughout Asia. Some of the most well-known styles on offer cover avant-garde pieces, media technologies and architectural design pieces.

Asian Art Museum, San Francisco, CA

Noted as one of the largest Asian art museums in the world, the Asian Art Museum boasts a collection of over 18,000 pieces from throughout Asia. The collections on display are enough to fill days with knowledge about the millennia of Asian art that came before, with prominent pieces from Chinese dynasties taking the spotlight.

Mori Art Museum, Tokyo, Japan

With a placement in Tokyo, Japan and the 53rd floor view, visitors can enjoy the exhibitions from Asia’s most predominant artists such as Ai Weiwei and Lee Bul. All of the exhibitions in Mori Art Museum are temporary, meaning that you can always see something new when you come back to it. The focus of the museum is contemporary art and while there are some appearances by Western and European authors, the large majority of the focus is put solely on Asian art.

These are some of my choices when it comes to introducing yourself to Asian art in the best possible light. Keep in mind that opinions and choices vary, so you may like some of these museums more than others. If you find yourself in a city with an Asian art museum or an exhibition, make sure to check it out – you might be pleasantly surprised.