10 Modern Museums You’ll Definitely Want to Visit

Museums – most larger cities have them and most of us want to visit them when we’re exploring a new city. Luckily there’s a treasure trove of jaw-dropping modern museums around the world just waiting to be checked out and sadly most of us will probably not even scratch the surface of what’s out there. We can do our best though! If you’re looking to investigate some cool museums, check out these 10 that will surely have you wanting to visit.

02.23.18 | By
10 Modern Museums You’ll Definitely Want to Visit

Coop Himmelb(l)au designed the The Museum of Contemporary Art & Planning Exhibition (MOCAPE) in Shenzhen, China, with a silver floating “Cloud” that houses a cafe, museum store, and book shop within its massive open plaza.

Photo by Rafael Gamo

Museo Soumaya was designed by FR-EE / Fernando Romero Enterprise and it houses a massive art collection of 15th to mid-20th century works, as well as the most number of Rodin sculptures in a private collection. Located in Mexico City, the museum’s exterior may be clad in a busy skin of hexagonal tiles, but the interior boasts a calm, soothing presence.

Photo by Darren Bradley

Freelon Adjaye Bond and SmithGroup are behind the design of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C., with David Adjaye as the lead designer and Philip Freelon as the lead architect. Its incredible exterior features a bronze filigree shell that projects a bold and unforgettable statement.

Photo by Boegly + Grazia photographers

Located in Montignac, France, the Lascaux IV: The International Centre for Cave Art is an educational museum where visitors get to check out 20,000-year-old Lascaux cave paintings. It was co-designed by Snøhetta and Duncan Lewis Scape Architecture who created an interior that helps evoke a cave-like feel.

Photo by Shigeo Ogawa

The Fukushima, Japan located Miyahata Ruins Museum holds everything related to the Jomon Period around the 10th Century BC. Located on Jomon ruins, the museum was designed by Furuichi and Associates with a geometric wooden roof structure that references caves called grotta where their people used to live.

Photo by Zhang Guangyuan

The 1911 Revolution Museum, designed by CADI, celebrates Chinese history in the city of Wuhan and operates as a way to educate the children on the 1911 Revolution. The red, U-shaped building makes a dynamic statement with an outdoor public space that welcomes visitors.

Photo by Roland Halbe

In 2017, the Jean Nouvel designed Louvre Abu Dhabi finally opened for visitors after many, many years and lots of delays. It showcases a domed ceiling with a layered geometric pattern that lets light filter through.

Photo by Takuji Shimmura

The Estonian National Museum was built in the city of Tartu to represent the country’s history and pride. An international competition was held and the winning design was by Dorell.Ghotmeh.Tane, who ignored the proposed site plans and instead designed it on a former Soviet military base. The sloped roof of the all-glass building looks to lift into the sky, almost like the path of an airplane.

Photo by Javier Callejas

The impressive Andalucia’s Museum of Memory in Granada, Spain, was designed by Alberto Campo Baeza, who had a goal to make it “the most beautiful building.” Its central courtyard is home to a winding ramp that connects the floors while giving visitors a place to stroll and reflect.

Photo by Nic Lehoux

Renzo Piano Building Workshop collaborated with Narud-Stokke-Wiig on the waterfront Astrup Fearnley Museet in Oslo, Norway. A slanted glass roof covers the sail-like structure and filters a soft light onto the modern art that fills the contemporary museum.

Caroline Williamson is Editor-in-Chief of Design Milk. She has a BFA in photography from SCAD and can usually be found searching for vintage wares, doing New York Times crossword puzzles in pen, or reworking playlists on Spotify.