Storm King Art Center, named after its proximity to Storm King Mountain, is an outdoor art museum. Its collection holds possibly the largest collection of contemporary outdoor sculptures in the United States. Located in New Windsor NY, about an hour north of New York City, the museum contains sculptures from small to gigantic.
To see the sculptures, you can walk the trails or simply walk across the wide open fields to see these breathtaking sculptures. Like most sculpture gardens, it is a perfect getaway for families, couples or groups of friends to enjoy the outdoors and appreciate the many sculptures scattered around. You’ll sure to emerge from Storm King with your soul restored and your legs tired!
The Art at Storm King
The core collection includes pieces by modern masters, including Alexander Calder, David Smith, Mark di Suvero, Henry Moore, Douglas Abdell, Isamu Noguchi, Richard Serra and Louise Nevelson. The center has more recently added sculptures by contemporary sculptors including Magdalena Abakanowicz, Alice Aycock, Andy Goldsworthy, Alexander Liberman, Sol LeWitt, and Roy Lichtenstein.
Maya Lin’s Storm King Wavefield (2009) is one of the newest additions to the collection. The seven long rows of undulating land forms are frightfully difficult to photograph — almost too large to take in. The waves invite you to walk into the sculpture. Lin actually transformed the landscape to form her art — but the Storm King has been doing that throughout its grounds, modifying the landscape to showcase the sculpture collection. (Storm King Wavefield was extraordinarily difficult to photograph.)
Storm King’s History
Ralph E. Ogden founded the museum 1960 for Hudson River School paintings. Soon, though, it evolved into a major contemporary sculpture venue. When he retired from his family’s business, he purchased an estate as a home to his sculpture collection and opened it up to the public. In 1967, he purchased 13 pieces from sculptor David Smith, substantially expanding his collection and firmly establishing the museum as an important place to appreciate sculpture.
Initially, Storm King displayed its collection around the main building. But as the collection grew, it pressed outward away from the main building. The museum also altered the landscape to showcase the collection.
The museum’s collection significantly grew in 1975, when it saved five monumental works by Mark di Suvero from being dismantled. The pieces are now form part of the center’s core collection. If you’re looking for them, you’ll find them prominently displayed in its South Fields.
The center continued to grow throughout the latter part of the 20th century, adding sculptures to its permanent collection. The sculpture also changes as Storm King also rotates exhibits from other museums.
Know Before You Go
Purchase your timed-entry tickets in advance. Please note that there’s only one indoor restroom area; all others are port-a-potties. Wear comfortable shoes. And dress for the weather.
There is a café at the Storm King Art Center, but you can bring your own picnic and enjoy it in the shade of art or in a field surrounded by art on all sides! There are numerous benches and tables to accommodate picnics.
In addition to hiking around the trails, you may also rent bicycles (or bring your own). There is also a tram that will carry you throughout the park. You may want to download the app and the map in advance so you can plan your visit. Plan on spending at least three hours there; longer if you intend to see every single work.
Getting there: 1 Museum Rd, New Windsor, NY
Hours: Wednesday – Monday, 10 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. Late summer hours on Fridays and Saturdays until 7:30 p.m.
Website: Storm King
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