They say a picture speaks more than a thousand words. How about tons of pictures that can be found in different art exhibitions? Pictures can brighten up a room, your day, or even your mood! On a rainy (or even a sunny) day, browsing through one or a couple of photography museums is a great way to spend the day. Here are 10 amazing museums in Europe that our locals recommend.
FOAM – Amsterdam
FOAM Amsterdam has grown rapidly to one of the leading photography museum in Europe. They always have at least two, but often three or more exhibitions at the same time. The FOAM curators are experts in selecting really inspiring stuff. Not just by established photographers – there’s always at least one exhibition by a relatively unknown younger artist. Also check out the very nice bookshop & cafe they have….
Sala Parés – Barcelona
This treasure is probably the oldest privately owned commercial art gallery in the world. In business since 1840, Sala Parés Barcelona has the distinction of being the first gallery to publicly exhibit Picasso’s work. They still focus on art and photography, making sure to offer you a very diverse experience.
Camera Work Gallery – Berlin
Camera Work is a beautifully curated gallery of faces and you never feel awkward about ringing the door of that gallery, hidden in the third courtyard, typical Berlin. Without making a fuss about it, Camera Work simply is good photography. PS: their second gallery is called CWS, Camera Work Contemporary, and is located in Mitte in the former Jewish girls’ school – the building alone is worth the visit to this more recent location and you will discover more radical positions of contemporary photographers there.
Brückenkopf – Bern
Brückenkopf is a project by the charismatic Swiss artist Chantal Michel. She installed her art works in 30 rooms, using different kind of media such as photography, videos, perfumes, sounds, etc. As you walk through the spaces all your senses will be touched. This place is surreal, poetic, eerie, romantic and nostalgic at the same time.
“The Central European House of Photography (SEDF) is in a side street to one of the main tourist paths, so it might not be immediately visible. Every time I go there the place is totally empty – which I actually truly enjoy – you will have the place to yourself. It’s rather a small gallery, but they organize the main photographic festival in Slovakia, the Month of Photography.” — Lenka Encingerová
The Photographers’ Gallery – London
Our London local Peter´s favorite photo museum? The Photographers’ Gallery. “An hour in the gallery makes for a peaceful break from the shopping masses of Oxford Street. Who knows, it might even make your photos of fancy restaurant meals or grumpy cats even more artistic?”
Les Douches Gallerie – Paris
Situated in what was once a public bath built in the 1930s, the gallery Les Douches is one of Paris’s best-kept secrets. For anyone passionate about architecture, history or photography – it’s the place to visit.
Portuguese Center of Photography – Porto
Photography straight from jail. Sounds weird, but that’s actually what the Portuguese Center of Photography is all about. The former prison is the ideal location to host the museum, with both temporary and permanent exhibitions. Porto played an important role in the development of Portuguese photography: Emilio Biel and Domingos Alvão used to live here.
PhotoSynthesis started as a shop for equipment and accessories but in recent years has expanded into much more than that. It’s not really a museum, but they have such great exhibitions that they’re worth a mention in this article! “There’s also a glass-roof bar right between the shop and the gallery offers a nice place to mingle with the many amateur and professional photographers who come here to work or simply have a drink.” — Yana Alexieva
Thessaloniki Museum of Photography – Thessaloniki
Located in an old military warehouse at the port of Thessaloniki, the Thessaloniki Museum of Photography is the perfect spot for photographers. Not only do they host beautiful exhibitions, but the spot in itself is a great place to get your camera out. Have a drink at the coffee shop after your visit and enjoy some perfect people spotting.