Old masters rewarded observant art critics by hiding things in their paintings, such as discreet self-portraits and lewd caricatures of the queen. Redeem art history with this Groupon.
Choose Between Two Options
- $45 for a one-year individual membership (a $90 value)
- $55 for a one-year family membership, for two adults and children age 12–17 residing in the same household (a $110 value)
Each membership grants visitors a year’s worth of free admission to the permanent collection, as well as invitations to exhibition openings and members' events, and discounted bookstore purchases, workshops, and arts events produced by the gallery.
The gallery's current crop of special exhibitions includes Sakahàn: International Indigenous Art (opening Thursday, May 16 at 6 p.m.), a showcase of indigenous art by more than 80 artists from 16 countries and six continents.
The National Gallery of Canada
A fair warning to arachnophobes: to enter The National Gallery of Canada, you must cross paths with a 30-foot-tall egg-carrying spider. But fear not, the giant insect isn't real—it's Louise Bourgeois' bronze sculpture Maman, which arrived at the gallery's front plaza in 2005.
Maman is one of the museum's nearly 64,000 artworks, including 17,000 pieces from the collection of the Canadian Museum of Contemporary Photography (currently housed at the Gallery), which trace the history of visual art from the Middle Ages to today with an emphasis on Canadian artists. Along with paintings by Hieronymus Bosch, Daphne Odjig, and A.Y. Jackson, the collection includes approximately 9,100 prints, 6,600 drawings, and 19,700 photographs—and not a single one is a cat meme. The gallery also showcases more than 3,000 pieces of contemporary work from Canadian and international artists.
The museum's collection grows by an average of 300 pieces a year, which fill about a quarter of the building's 569,000 square feet. The space features impressive views of the Ottawa River, and houses lush gardens and peaceful courtyards.