American Visionary Art Museum

American Visionary Art Museum AVAM is the official national museum for self-taught, intuitive artistry located in Downtown Baltimore's Inner Harbor next to Federal Hill Park.
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AMERICAN VISIONARY ART MUSEUM (AVAM) is America’s official national museum and education center for self-taught, intuitive artistry. The 1.1-acre wonderland campus includes 3 renovated historic industrial buildings that house wonders created by farmers, housewives, mechanics, retired folk, the homeless, as well as the occasional neurosurgeon–all inspired by the fire within. Using materials from roots to toothpicks, the visionary transforms dreams and loss into powerful works of art. More info at http://avam.org. Museum and store hours: 10am-5pm, Wednesday-Sunday

Operating as usual

Shrine of the Grotto of the Redemption in West Bend, Iowa was built stone by stone by Father Paul Matthias Dobberstein s...
05/04/2021

Shrine of the Grotto of the Redemption in West Bend, Iowa was built stone by stone by Father Paul Matthias Dobberstein starting in 1912, with the help of Matt Szerensce over the span of 52 years. As a young seminarian, Dobberstein had become gravely ill with pneumonia. He promised to the Holy Mother that if he survived, he would erect a shrine in her honor.

Over 10 years, he collected minerals and precious and semi-precious stones, petrified wood, malachite, azurite, agates, geodes, jasper, quartz, topaz, calcite, stalactites, stalagmites and more. Purchased and donated materials helped create the final grotto.

The site is an inspiration behind artist Becca Kacanda’s practice and the virtual art workshop she leads with us on Tuesday, June 8, 7pm. To register to make your own grotto-inspired piece, visit https://www.avam.org/event-details/virtual-face-vessel-workshop-with-rotto-grotto

Photos: Carl Wycoff and Alejandro Palido

Congratulations to the winners of the miniature Kinetic Sculpture Race 2021! They were among 40 models that competed thi...
05/03/2021

Congratulations to the winners of the miniature Kinetic Sculpture Race 2021! They were among 40 models that competed this weekend over miniature mud, sand and water obstacles in an ode to AVAM’s annual wacky race of human-powered sculptures.

People’s Choice Award AND Worst Honorable Mention: Sheldon’s Big Adventure by Mike Shelley. The sculpture made of real cat hair, with a litter box as base, spilled kitty litter and wrecked havoc all over the race. It also captivated the hearts of viewers at home.

Golden Flipper Award for its memorable face plant in the water obstacle: S.S. Thiqq Monkey by St. Paul’s School for Boys

Art Award: Howley Davidson’s Dream by team SodaQuackers.com

Engineering Award: Wrecking Bear by Nova Labs

Born to be Wild Award for the sculpture that best embodied the race theme: BuhBuh Fish by Laura Knapp and daughter Isolene Bautro, aged 1.5 years old

In case you missed it, it’s available on our page American Visionary Art Museum and will be posted later this week on our YouTube channel at YouTube.com/Americanvisionaryartmusem

Thanks to all who competed and tuned in! We look forward to seeing you in person for human-sized Kinetic next year!

Today! Miniature Fifi looks forward to seeing you, 5/1, 11am ET at the Miniature Kinetic Sculpture Race. RSVP to watch o...
05/01/2021

Today! Miniature Fifi looks forward to seeing you, 5/1, 11am ET at the Miniature Kinetic Sculpture Race. RSVP to watch online at https://www.avam.org/event-details/honey-i-shrunk-the-kinetic-sculpture-race or watch right here on our page. She’s one of 40 sculptures made and submitted by members of the public like YOU, that will compete over miniature sand, mud, and water obstacles, all for the glory of tiny awards like The Golden Flipper (for the most memorable water entry) and the People’s Choice Award. Tune in to the live steam to vote for your favorite in real time at https://www.avam.org/event-details/honey-i-shrunk-the-kinetic-sculpture-race, or catch it on this page!

Today! Miniature Fifi looks forward to seeing you, 5/1, 11am ET at the Miniature Kinetic Sculpture Race. RSVP to watch online at https://www.avam.org/event-details/honey-i-shrunk-the-kinetic-sculpture-race or watch right here on our page. She’s one of 40 sculptures made and submitted by members of the public like YOU, that will compete over miniature sand, mud, and water obstacles, all for the glory of tiny awards like The Golden Flipper (for the most memorable water entry) and the People’s Choice Award. Tune in to the live steam to vote for your favorite in real time at https://www.avam.org/event-details/honey-i-shrunk-the-kinetic-sculpture-race, or catch it on this page!

“Nelson Mandela” by Rosie O’Donnell. Apartheid was legally abolished in South Africa April 27, 1994, with a new constitu...
04/29/2021

“Nelson Mandela” by Rosie O’Donnell. Apartheid was legally abolished in South Africa April 27, 1994, with a new constitution that heralded a triumph for human rights everywhere. Nelson Mandela voted for the first time in his life that day, after more than two decades of struggle to end the cruel and violent system of whites-only rule in his home country. Millions joined him across the country to cast their ballots, sometimes waiting for hours to finally have their voices included. Mandela went on to be elected by Parliament as the first president of a democratic South Africa on May 9.

The painting was on view in our exhibition “Race, Class and Gender: Three Things that Contribute Zero to Character, Because Being a Schmuck is an Equal Opportunity,” 2005-2006.

“Nelson Mandela” by Rosie O’Donnell. Apartheid was legally abolished in South Africa April 27, 1994, with a new constitution that heralded a triumph for human rights everywhere. Nelson Mandela voted for the first time in his life that day, after more than two decades of struggle to end the cruel and violent system of whites-only rule in his home country. Millions joined him across the country to cast their ballots, sometimes waiting for hours to finally have their voices included. Mandela went on to be elected by Parliament as the first president of a democratic South Africa on May 9.

The painting was on view in our exhibition “Race, Class and Gender: Three Things that Contribute Zero to Character, Because Being a Schmuck is an Equal Opportunity,” 2005-2006.

04/22/2021
Explore "Another Green World" by Johanna Burke on Earth Day

Happy Earth Day! We're honored to join earthday.org today on its Restore our Earth campaign. By fostering care for our collective home, Earth, we hope to inspire action and healing of our singular planet. For the occasion, we share this clip of the show, narrated by AVAM curator, founder and director Rebecca Hoffberger. "Our human eyeballs are hardwired to see more variations of...green than any other color." By happy coincidence, it's also a soothing color for us.

"The Secret Life of Earth" is currently on view Wednesday-Sunday, 10am-5pm. For timed tickets, visit avam.org/tickets

Pictured: "Another Green World" by @Burke-Pryde-106158361250896/ Courtesy of Bergdorf Goodman. Photos by Dan MacMahon and Dan Meyers.

04/19/2021
Honey, I Shrunk the Kinetic Sculpture Race

Honey, I Shrunk the Kinetic Sculpture Race coming soon! Saturday, May 1, 11am ET, watch as 40 miniature, all-terrain vehicles, created and submitted by members of the public like YOU, compete over miniature water, sand and mud obstacles. Look also for your favorite cast of characters: the judges, Sister Euphonia Oblivion, and more, just a *wee* smaller this year. RSVP to watch online and for free at https://www.avam.org/event-details/honey-i-shrunk-the-kinetic-sculpture-race

Pictured: Gertrude by Susan Androsky, Royal CATamaran by Art Ross, The Last Bee on Earth by Lauren Preller, Miniature Fifi by AVAM, Larry, Mr. Boh’s Dune Buggy by HJP Arts Collective, and Mr. Prickles by Beka Plum.

Thank you for voting us Best Architecture in The Baltimore Architecture Foundation's competition, a people’s choice poll...
04/15/2021

Thank you for voting us Best Architecture in The Baltimore Architecture Foundation's competition, a people’s choice poll among 64 of the city’s most significant architectural gems. Round after round, you voted for US in a March Madness-inspired bracket.

To “win from the hometown hearts of voters in this Baltimore Architecture Foundation competition—out from 64, no less—of my own most admired architectural local treasures, is an unbelievable high and mega-honor,” says museum founder and director Rebecca Hoffberger. “It is also one shared with our outdoor sculptural artists: Andrew Logan, Adam Kurtzman, Dick Brown, The Hagans, and whirligig artist/farmer Vollis Simpson, whose creations punctuate the fun and beauty of our campus! Proudest thank you to the Baltimore Architecture Foundation for including our American Visionary Art Museum in this remarkable competition in the first place, and to all our fabulous architects, engineers, beloved builders J. Vinton Schafer & Sons, Inc., and especially to everyone who took time to express and vote their enthused delight in AVAM! All our staff, board and volunteers are doing a wild and grateful happy dance because of you.”

The architects of the Main Building are Rebecca Swanston, FAIA and designer Alex Castro. Architect Diane Cho, AIA of Cho Benn Holback + Associates (today Quinn Evans) led the 2004 design of our Jim Rouse Visionary Center.

Pictured: The LeRoy E. Hoffberger Shining Youth/Shining Walls Mosaics completed by youth of the William Donald Schaefer House, one of the Maryland Department of Juvenile Services group facilities for boys, which provides treatment for substance abuse. The youth were apprenticed to various mosaic artists during this community project, aimed at providing them with tangible life skills and personal development.

Thank you for voting us Best Architecture in The Baltimore Architecture Foundation's competition, a people’s choice poll among 64 of the city’s most significant architectural gems. Round after round, you voted for US in a March Madness-inspired bracket.

To “win from the hometown hearts of voters in this Baltimore Architecture Foundation competition—out from 64, no less—of my own most admired architectural local treasures, is an unbelievable high and mega-honor,” says museum founder and director Rebecca Hoffberger. “It is also one shared with our outdoor sculptural artists: Andrew Logan, Adam Kurtzman, Dick Brown, The Hagans, and whirligig artist/farmer Vollis Simpson, whose creations punctuate the fun and beauty of our campus! Proudest thank you to the Baltimore Architecture Foundation for including our American Visionary Art Museum in this remarkable competition in the first place, and to all our fabulous architects, engineers, beloved builders J. Vinton Schafer & Sons, Inc., and especially to everyone who took time to express and vote their enthused delight in AVAM! All our staff, board and volunteers are doing a wild and grateful happy dance because of you.”

The architects of the Main Building are Rebecca Swanston, FAIA and designer Alex Castro. Architect Diane Cho, AIA of Cho Benn Holback + Associates (today Quinn Evans) led the 2004 design of our Jim Rouse Visionary Center.

Pictured: The LeRoy E. Hoffberger Shining Youth/Shining Walls Mosaics completed by youth of the William Donald Schaefer House, one of the Maryland Department of Juvenile Services group facilities for boys, which provides treatment for substance abuse. The youth were apprenticed to various mosaic artists during this community project, aimed at providing them with tangible life skills and personal development.

"Police Line" and "Childhood Pastimes" by David Samuel. When asked the character trait he most values, “Caring,” he repl...
04/13/2021

"Police Line" and "Childhood Pastimes" by David Samuel. When asked the character trait he most values, “Caring,” he replied. The wood carvings were on view in our exhibition "Race, Class, Gender ≠ (Do Not Equal) Character" 2005-2006.

Samuel was born in Brooklyn, NY, the son of an immigrant from the British West Indies. Raised during the Depression, Samuel worked as an electrician’s helper while in high school and was encouraged to apply to college by a school counselor. This life-changing moment motivated him to seek a career where he could help inspire others. He went on to become a guidance counselor himself, as well as a popular and respected high school principal, and an artist-in-residence. With his wife Evelyn and two sons, Samuel spent many summers at Trywoodie Camp, an in*******al and intercultural children’s camp in Hyde Park, NY, where he served as Art Director.

Which is Baltimore's Best Building: American Visionary Art Museum OR Enoch Pratt Free Library? YOUR votes have narrowed ...
04/09/2021

Which is Baltimore's Best Building: American Visionary Art Museum OR Enoch Pratt Free Library? YOUR votes have narrowed the field from 64 sites, down to us, the FINAL TWO in BAF Madness, a friendly bracket amongst the city's prettiest buildings, organized by The Baltimore Architecture Foundation. THANK YOU for your dear support that's gotten us this far. We appreciate you and your outpouring! Vote in this last, championship round by Sunday, April 11 for AVAM or the Pratt here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/H5YYNSH

We're honored to be a championship finalist, thanks to you.

BAF Madness was conceptualized by The Baltimore Architecture Foundation as a way to celebrate its 150th anniversary, March Madness, and our hometown’s spectacular heritage as expressed in the built environment.

Which is Baltimore's Best Building: American Visionary Art Museum OR Enoch Pratt Free Library? YOUR votes have narrowed the field from 64 sites, down to us, the FINAL TWO in BAF Madness, a friendly bracket amongst the city's prettiest buildings, organized by The Baltimore Architecture Foundation. THANK YOU for your dear support that's gotten us this far. We appreciate you and your outpouring! Vote in this last, championship round by Sunday, April 11 for AVAM or the Pratt here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/H5YYNSH

We're honored to be a championship finalist, thanks to you.

BAF Madness was conceptualized by The Baltimore Architecture Foundation as a way to celebrate its 150th anniversary, March Madness, and our hometown’s spectacular heritage as expressed in the built environment.

Happy Easter from “Green Bunny” by Clarence and Grace Woolsley! Bottle caps and found objects, date unknown. The Woolsey...
04/04/2021

Happy Easter from “Green Bunny” by Clarence and Grace Woolsley! Bottle caps and found objects, date unknown. The Woolseys were keeping their bottle caps in a gallon jar, until one snowy night in 1961 when the jar was full, and they started to make their first sculpture with the caps. They began displaying their pieces in a roadside menagerie called “The World’s Largest Pioneer Caparena.” Caparena was their word for an arena of caps. Admission? 25 cents.

They soon became discouraged because of the lack of response, and they abandoned their hobby. After their deaths, their unique creations were newly “discovered.” Today, Woolsey sculptures have sold individually for $5,000 and more. Their art is recognized among the most significant pieces in American outsider art. Their legacy is more than 200 sculptures created or covered completely with bottle caps.

Their works were on view in our exhibition “All Things Round: Galaxies, Eyeballs & Karma” 2011-2012.

We’re open regular hours today, Sunday, April 4, 10am-5pm. Welcome! For timed tickets, visit avam.org/tickets

We hope to see you!

Photo: Dan Meyers

Happy Easter from “Green Bunny” by Clarence and Grace Woolsley! Bottle caps and found objects, date unknown. The Woolseys were keeping their bottle caps in a gallon jar, until one snowy night in 1961 when the jar was full, and they started to make their first sculpture with the caps. They began displaying their pieces in a roadside menagerie called “The World’s Largest Pioneer Caparena.” Caparena was their word for an arena of caps. Admission? 25 cents.

They soon became discouraged because of the lack of response, and they abandoned their hobby. After their deaths, their unique creations were newly “discovered.” Today, Woolsey sculptures have sold individually for $5,000 and more. Their art is recognized among the most significant pieces in American outsider art. Their legacy is more than 200 sculptures created or covered completely with bottle caps.

Their works were on view in our exhibition “All Things Round: Galaxies, Eyeballs & Karma” 2011-2012.

We’re open regular hours today, Sunday, April 4, 10am-5pm. Welcome! For timed tickets, visit avam.org/tickets

We hope to see you!

Photo: Dan Meyers

Happy Easter Weekend! Our Cosmic Galaxy Egg by Andrew Logan features swirling galaxies, nascent stars, and even our tiny...
04/02/2021

Happy Easter Weekend! Our Cosmic Galaxy Egg by Andrew Logan features swirling galaxies, nascent stars, and even our tiny earth, based on imagery captured by NASA's Hubble Space Telescope, located in Baltimore. Young stars are blue, like the hottest part of a flame, because they are radiating energy. Meanwhile, red in the sculpture represents older, dying stars.

We’re open regular hours all weekend long (Wed-Sun, 10am-5pm). Welcome! For timed museum admission tickets, visit avam.org. PLUS, we’re offering a Cosmic Egg Portrait and Art Kit on Saturday, April 3, 1pm-3pm. We'll take a FREE instant photo of you with the egg that you can take home with you right away. Add an optional egg-shaped mosaic frame kit for $18 to house your snazzy snap. To RSVP for a portrait, see https://www.avam.org/event-details/cosmic-egg-portrait-art-kit

Image: @SVNCRWNS

Happy Easter Weekend! Our Cosmic Galaxy Egg by Andrew Logan features swirling galaxies, nascent stars, and even our tiny earth, based on imagery captured by NASA's Hubble Space Telescope, located in Baltimore. Young stars are blue, like the hottest part of a flame, because they are radiating energy. Meanwhile, red in the sculpture represents older, dying stars.

We’re open regular hours all weekend long (Wed-Sun, 10am-5pm). Welcome! For timed museum admission tickets, visit avam.org. PLUS, we’re offering a Cosmic Egg Portrait and Art Kit on Saturday, April 3, 1pm-3pm. We'll take a FREE instant photo of you with the egg that you can take home with you right away. Add an optional egg-shaped mosaic frame kit for $18 to house your snazzy snap. To RSVP for a portrait, see https://www.avam.org/event-details/cosmic-egg-portrait-art-kit

Image: @SVNCRWNS

Address

800 Key Hwy
Baltimore, MD
21230

www.mtamaryland.com, www.charmcitycirculator.com

Opening Hours

Wednesday 10:00 - 17:00
Thursday 10:00 - 17:00
Friday 10:00 - 17:00
Saturday 10:00 - 17:00
Sunday 10:00 - 17:00

Telephone

(410) 244-1900

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