We always talk about the importance of taking breaks and visiting new places to stay inspired so recently our whole team took a trip to visit The United States. Firstly to attend Adobe Max (find out what we got up to here) and also to hunt down some great creative spots/sights. 

I was lucky to be able to spend just over a week exploring NYC just before we came back to England and have definitely come home feeling ready to create new work!

Here's my top places to visit for creative minds from the time I spent in Manhattan.

 time out creative minds

1. MoMA & MoMA PS1

MoMA was probably the gallery I spent most time in, trying to leave proved impossible. I kept discovering more and more interesting work. They make great use of the space in the building, which boasts impressive permanent exhibitions that feature works from greats like Van Gough and Picasso.

They also usually have at least two galleries dedicated to impermanent exhibitions that are touring different spaces. This makes MoMA a great place to discover new artists with huge bodies of work. Below are images from the two exhibitions on during my visit. 

The exhibition is the first major museum survey devoted to the artist in over 30 years. It depicts White’s entire career, from the 1930s through his death in 1979.

Watching his work, style and political statements change with his age and experience was incredible! 

 charles white creative minds
charles white creative minds
 creative minds  charles white work
 MOMa work example creative minds

Depicts what Bruce Nauman called “withdrawal as an art form.” The retrospective exhibitions shows the many forms and mediums he has used to explore this topic over the past few decades.

 His work seemed to often cycle and return back to previous topics of questions he had already explored. I was lucky to see both parts of this exhibition both allowed you to interact with the work meaning I felt like more than a spectator.

sketch creative minds
words creative minds
creative minds disks
language creative minds

MoMA PS1

This is a smaller more experimental gallery based in Long Island. The entire space has a
loft installation kind of feel but it is quite a large gallery with massive rooms suitable for installation pieces.

The entire space was dedicated to Bruce Newman: Disappearing Acts and acted as an extension of the exhibition at MoMA.

This made the connection between the two galleries very valuable. As the ideas or initial sketches behind some of the work I had just seen were on display in this extended exhibit (you can see the connections in the images above.)

2. The MET

You quite literally can not miss the Metropolitan Museum of Art, this massive building is a beautiful piece of architecture, seeing in person was definitely a wow moment! Inside it contains so much art and history you could easily loose a day in there and I think Martin and Shumi actually did!

If you are a bit tight on time, like I was, I would highly recommend the Modern and Contemporary Art section. Which houses 12,000 pieces of work from the 1900 to the modern today. This permanent exhibition makes it possible to see the development of Modern art and the influence of the past on present works.

creative minds met architecture
creative minds inside met

I also managed to catch a rooftop exhibition by artist Huma Bhabha on it's last day. She's the 6th artist to be commissioned to create work for this outside space. 

These figures  have been described as 'haunting' and are meant to be abstractly reflect the human form.

It was definitely quite a sight with the Manhattan skyline framing the exhibition.

rooftop creative minds

3. Chelsea Market/ The High Line

There's plenty of galleries to get around but they were not the only source of inspiration I found. Not by a long shot.

Head to Chelsea Market for a mixture of local artists work, craft beer stands, artisan coffee shops and some pretty great gift shopping. There's loads of great branding, packaging and way finding design to spot. Plus everyone was really friendly and up for a discussion about how long they had been running their business etc. 

Just around the back of the market is The High Line, a 1.45-mile-long elevated park. This amazing structure has beautiful gardens, awesome street art and places to relax and watch the city with a view! This was one of my favourite spots in Manhattan. 

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garden high line

4. Grand Central Station & Market

The beauty and elegance of this station makes it a must see for any creative! There's tones of old typography and an immense mural with beautiful colours on the ceiling. To top it off there's an Apple store...so really it's every creatives dream.

Plus if you know where to look there's a pretty awesome little market tucked away in the station itself! It's packed full of fresh food, amazing chocolate and great coffee. The perfect place to pick some lunch or just check out some local products. 

creative minds grand central
creative minds market veg
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5. MAD

The Museum of Art's and Design was one of the smaller galleries I visited. However it was still packed full of interesting and innovative work and super close to Central Park!

I particularly enjoyed  the exhibition The Future Of Craft created as part of the The Burke Prize 2018. An award which champions emerging artists who's work is helping to pushing the field forward in dynamic ways. Similarly to MoMA PS1 the work here is more experimental/raw and a lot of the pieces explored complex themes.

On the top floor you can also interact with artists at work. This is something I haven't really come across and love the idea, it makes your visit more of an experience. 

creative minds craft work

The Eye's Level: Anne Lindberg

craft work creative minds

It was pretty hard to narrow down my favourite places to just 5. Most of the places I visited left me feeling pretty inspired and it's a great place to practise your photography skills and to try out the Lightroom CC App. 

Quick Tip: If you're looking for somewhere to stay check out The Local NYC. I stayed at the Hostel for a few days, it has it own rooftop bar with great views of the city plus doubles as a bar/coffee shop for the locals meaning you get to meet plenty of cool people. Plus the hostel sells artwork made by local artists which was a cool touch!

Fancy finding out more about our trip and what we learnt at Adobe Max? 
Click here.

About the author 

Emily Melling

Emily Melling studied a degree in Visual Communication, after graduating she became a freelance graphic designer, specialising in Branding & Identity. She enjoys developing working relationships with clients and other creatives who are open to exploring new and innovative ideas.

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