Unlike many of the museums and galleries along the National Mall, the National Gallery of Art is not run by the Smithsonian Institute. We didn’t make it inside the Gallery, but they also operate the sculpture garden located between the National Gallery of Art and the Natural History Museum.
The Sculpture garden opened in 1999 and surrounds the pre-existing fountain that doubles as a skating rink in the winter months. The sculpture gardens features contemporary art sculptures and is a great place to introduce kids to art.
The great thing about outdoor art galleries for kids is that it’s okay to be loud, and it’s okay to run around. Although you can’t climb on the art, it’s a lot less stressful to take your young kids through a sculpture garden than an indoor art gallery.
When I heard that you could rent skates and skate around in the middle of the sculpture garden, I was enchanted with the idea. Gordie had never been on skates and Nicky still couldn’t even walk so we didn’t end up doing it but I still think it’s really cool that you can.
Surrounding the skating rink are many different large sculptures.
There are also gardens. I imagine those would be prettier in warmer months.
I love how this sculpture is echoed in the crane in the background.
Gordie was amused running around the gardens but was still a little young to to appreciate the sculptures themselves.
This house was one of my favorite pieces. It’s only made up of 3 pieces (2 wall pieces and a roof piece), but the way it’s constructed it looks like it is actually house shaped. If you look at the bottom of the house in this picture you can get an idea of what it really looks like.
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