The visaul arts thrive in the Hudson Valley with a dynamic art scene in Dutchess County. Our museums and art galleries feature a wide range of periods and styles, from antiquities, to present-day modernism, and even fine, artisanal craftwork.
S = Seasonal attraction or activity
SE = Open during scheduled events
Hudson Beach Glass, Beacon
Art becomes more accessible when you can actually create it yourself, or watch it being created. At this busy studio and shop, which opened 20 years ago in a historic renovated firehouse, you can watch artisanal glass blower John Gilvey and his staff create functional and sculptural glass objects, or try your own hand during a glasswork class. www.hudsonbeachglass.com
If your tastes run to modern art, you’ll find impressive large-scale works by world-renowned contemporary artists in these oversized galleries of the former 1929 Nabisco box printing factory. Since the Dia Art Foundation opened this outpost in 2003 to host its collections from the 1960’s to the present, Beacon has transformed into a vibrant arts destination. Dia’s permanent and traveling collections are supplemented by special presentations, gallery talks, and guided tours. www.diaart.org/sites/main/beacon
Lunch in Beacon
This renaissance riverfront city, once a regional manufacturing hub, is now a hip hotbed of art, culture, and cuisine. With more than 20 restaurants, cafes, diners and delis, Beacon offers lunch options such as wholesome comfort food at Homespun Foods; farm-to-table specialties at the Town Crier Café; a taste of Asia at Sukhothai; or a view of the falls from the patio at The Roundhouse.
Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center at Vassar College, Poughkeepsie
Cézanne, Matisse, O’Keeffe, Picasso, and Pollock. Works by these masters are tucked away in this manageably-sized museum on the Vassar College campus. Even better, they’re free to see! The collection of more than 18,000 works are curated around themes and time periods, beginning with Middle Eastern and Asian antiquities, progressing through the Hudson River School painters and the 21st century. www.fllac.vassar.edu
Art Centro, Poughkeepsie
At this new downtown art center, you can get really hands-on by taking a pottery class. This spacious, bright, well-equipped ceramics studio has 10 wheels, two large handbuilding tables, and two kilns. Classes are offered for both adults and kids, or stop by during the monthly Community Clay days. www.artcentro.org