Where to View Art for Free in St. Louis

Art aficionados will love these museums, galleries and sculptures

There’s a lot of art to see in St. Louis, and unless you want to buy it, it won’t cost you a cent. An ongoing and pervasive ethos among many St. Louis attractions demands free admission, making our institutions accessible to the least privileged among us. Find most, but not all, of St. Louis’ major art destinations in Forest Park, the Central West End and Grand Center.

See

As at the other three major institutions in Forest Park, admission to the Saint Louis Art Museum is free, and even ticketed special exhibits are free on Fridays. This comprehensive museum features art from nearly every epoch and culture in the world, with extensive holdings in German, pre-Columbian and Early American art. On view now: British sculptor Rachel Whiteread.

Pulitzer Arts Foundation

Grand Center is home to four major art institutions. The Pulitzer Arts Foundation thoughtfully curates exhibits that resonate with its serene minimalist building by Tadao Ando, currently showing Striking Power: Iconoclasm in Ancient Egypt. Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis, a non-collecting museum, shows cutting-edge work by artists around the world. Museum of Contemporary Religious Art is the world’s first art museum to explore themes of religion and spirituality across the spectrum of faiths. Saint Louis University Museum of Art pairs its eclectic permanent collection with special exhibits.

Laumeier Sculpture Park

Farther west, Laumeier Sculpture Park invites visitors to discover some 60 large-scale works by acclaimed artists over 105 acres, in and out of woods and an indoor exhibition space.

Buy

A nice concentration of galleries showing contemporary art reside in the Central West End: Philip Slein Gallery; Duane Reed Gallery; Projects +GalleryHouska Gallery; and Atrium Gallery.

Other visit-worthy galleries (among many) include Craft Alliance Center of Art + Design in The Loop; Kodner Gallery, showing art from the 18thcentury to the present; Bruno David Gallery; Art Saint Louis;  William Shearburn Gallery; Cherokee Street Gallery, Third Degree Glass Factory.

David Lancaster
About the author

David Lancaster is an accomplished artist and photographer whose work has been shown in galleries in St. Louis, Chica...