Beijing is a city attracting tourists with its ancient history and rich culture. But what to do when the Forbidden City and Tiananmen Square are seen, the Great Wall of China conquered, and scorpions and other delicacies of Wangfujing Street tasted? It’s time to turn to art. We have prepared for you the top 5 places for art lovers in Beijing.

The State Museum of Fine Arts (自由 微 信) is one of the largest museums in China. The exposition includes both ancient and modern objects of fine and handicraft art, calligraphy, and sculpture. Of particular interest is the collection of caricatures painted by Chinese artists in the second half of the 20th century: they clearly reflect the social, political and moral problems that are of concern to the society of that time. In addition, the museum houses several hundred works by foreign artists, including paintings by Picasso. Also, in cooperation with museums around the world, exhibitions of foreign, including Russian, masters are regularly held. +

Address: 北京市 东城 区 五四 大街 一号 / 1 Wusi Dajie, East District
Working hours: Tues-Sun 9.00-17.00 (entrance until 4 pm)

Beijing Art Museum (北京 艺术 博物馆)

Beijing Art Museum. Source: 新浪 博客
Beijing Art Museum. Source: 新浪 博客

The museum is located in the territory of the Buddhist temple of Wanshou, erected during the Ming dynasty. The temple is on the list of cultural heritage sites under state protection. The main task of the Beijing Art Museum is to preserve and promote China’s traditional art. The collection of the museum presents the objects of ancient primitive art, works of masters of the Ming and Qing dynasties (paintings, jade, bronze and porcelain, masterpieces of calligraphy). The museum also exhibits the works of famous Chinese artists of the 20th century – Qi Baishi and Zhang Datsyan.

Address: 北京市 海淀 区 西 三环 北路 万寿寺 内 / West Third Ring Road North, Haidian District
Opening hours: Tues-Sun 9.00-16.30 (entrance until 4 pm)

Art Zone 798 (798 艺术 区)

Art Zone 798. Source: 大众 点评
Art Zone 798. Source: 大众 点评

Art Zone 798 is the most popular place in Beijing for lovers of modern art. Located on the territory of the former factory, it is a whole area with countless galleries, workshops, cafes and shops selling art items, clothing, books, etc. The streets of 798 are a sample of the urban landscape: factory pipes, houses of unusual architecture, covered graffiti wall. The territory regularly hosts exhibitions of beginners and already well-known artists, architects, designers from both China and around the world.

Address: 北京市 朝阳 区 酒仙桥 路 2 号 / 2 Jiuxianqiao Road, Chaoyang district
Opening hours: Mon-Sun around the clock (most galleries are open from 10.00-17.00)

Museum of the Central Academy of Fine Arts (中央 美术 学院 美术馆)

Museum of the Central Academy of Fine Arts. Source: 度 · 联 体 艺术 设计 设计
Museum of the Central Academy of Fine Arts. Source: 度 · 联 体 艺术 设计 设计

The museum building, designed by the famous Japanese architect Arata Isozaki, is in itself a work of art: a bizarre combination of shapes and materials, an interesting work with space and lighting, an unusual interior layout. The museum exhibits the works of students and graduates of the Academy, representatives of Chinese and foreign contemporary art, creating in various genres: painting, sculpture, installation, woodcut, etc. In addition, museums hold lectures and seminars on the history of art and a variety of master classes.

Address: 北京市 朝阳 区 望京 花 家 南街 南街 8 号 / 8 Hua Jia Di Nan Street, Chaoyang District
Opening hours: Tues-Sun 9.30-17.30 (entrance until 17.00)

Tsinghua University Art Museum

Art Museum of Tsinghua University. Source: Mario Botta
Art Museum of Tsinghua University. Source: Mario Botta

The museum, belonging to one of the best universities in China, has in its collection paintings of painting and calligraphy, bronze, porcelain, wardrobe and furniture items from the Han dynasty to our time. However, exhibitions organized jointly with foreign museums deserve special attention. Under the roof of the Tsinghua Museum exhibited works of Monet, Matisse, Picasso, Bourdelle. The project of the building was created by the famous Swiss architect-postmodernist – Mario Botta.

Address: 海淀 区 双 清 路 30 号 / 30 Shuangqing Road, Haidian District
Opening hours: Tues-Sun 9.00-17.00 (entrance until 4.30 pm)