Time:2 to 6 Hours
Museums are full of fascinating artwork, but they’re often cold, crowded and a bit overwhelming. After all, with 12,000 priceless ancient pieces of art on display, how are you supposed to decide where to go first? So if you and your date are interested in art, consider visiting a few galleries instead! Much smaller in size, art galleries tend to have extended evening hours during the week, attract fewer visitors at a time and often feature new, funky artists. They’re typically free and constantly change their exhibitions. New exhibition openings often feature live music, free drinks and snacks.
Choose one or two galleries each to visit over a day. That will provide a wide variety of art viewing and some of the artists may even be on hand to answer your questions and discuss their work. And hey, if you see something you like there, you may actually be able to afford it!
- Do your research! Make a list of local galleries and search the internet and local papers to find out about any special exhibitions or events. Unlike museums, galleries change artists and artwork regularly, so you and your date can choose which you’d like to visit based on the art they’re featuring now. If you haven’t heard of the artists before, find a couple of their pieces online first or take your chances and go! Depending on how large the galleries are and how much time you have, each of you should choose 1 or 2 to visit.
- Look for exhibition openings free to the public. Many art gallery openings are free to the public and can be a ton of fun! If there’s one opening near you, be sure to end the day by checking it out. Unlike museums, you’ll be allowed to eat and drink while listening to the artist discuss their inspiration.
- Gallery staff is often made up of young artists and art history graduates, so take advantage of their knowledge and passion by asking lots of questions! It’s amazing how differently you may end up looking at a piece of art after listening to an expert discuss it. If you see something you’d like to purchase, you may even be able to haggle on the price.
You’ll be on your feet all day, so wear comfortable shoes, but dress well. Aim for business casual to ensure that you have the best experience and gallery staff is most helpful. If you’re attending an opening, be aware of the scene. At a more formal gallery, dress very nicely. If it’s an alternative or grunge gallery, choose your clothing accordingly.