One of the greatest benefits of being a travel nurse or therapist is being able to choose your assignment destinations based on the things you love to do outside of work. Outdoors lovers can find any number of great destinations by heading out west, while the sun and beach lovers head south, and country music lovers can pretty much go anywhere to find great live music to enjoy. For travelers who love experiencing art, you may think that they have to travel to the big city. In some cases that is true, but there are several surprising cities on our list of Top Five Travel Assignments for Art Lovers.
Santa Fe, New Mexico – This New Mexico state capital is known for gorgeous desert landscapes and Southwestern U.S. history, what many don’t know is that there are a plethora of art venues that will rival any large city in the country. From the Museum of Spanish Colonial Art to the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, to the New Mexico Museum of Art, visitors can experience a wide array of styles from stunning Native American art to amazing avant-garde work. In addition to the formal museum venues, Santa Fe has a bustling commercial art gallery scene that has grown in the historic Railyard District.
Asheville, North Carolina – From the time that George Vanderbilt hired dozens of artists during construction of the Biltmore Estate in 1895, Asheville has been attracting artists to the town like bees to honey. Originally home to Southern Appalachian artwork, pottery, and crafts, now modern and contemporary American art rules the roost. The Asheville Art Museum puts together an impressive collection of exhibitions each year, while the Folk Art Center maintains the Appalachian art culture with its fine collection of pottery and wood carvings. For dozens of commercial galleries and studios, visitors can stroll through the River Arts District.
Chicago, Illinois – No matter what your favorite style of art is, the Windy City has you covered. From Gothic to French Impressionism, to Contemporary and Mexican Art, there is no shortage of works to contemplate as you visit the many museums and commercial galleries. Two must-see locations are the Art Institute of Chicago and the Museum of Contemporary Art. Another gem for art lovers to discover are the incredible sculptures and works that are scattered throughout the city’s public spaces, like Millennium Park.
Augusta, Georgia – Southern charm is not the only thing on display in Augusta. This city on the Savannah River is home to some of the finest southern art collections to be found anywhere. The Morris Museum of Art boasts over 5,000 paintings, sculptures and more from the late 1700’s to present day. With its home in a Federal-style mansion built in 1818, the Gertrude Herbert Institute of Art is known for a gorgeous collection of contemporary pieces. The city is also supporting the growth of a new commercial district called Artists Row popping up along the Savannah River.
Cincinnati, Ohio – Home to a surprising number of art galleries, Cincinnati is a well-kept secret in the art world. Art lovers may be surprised to learn that the Cincinnati Art Museum is home to a 65,000+ piece collection spanning over 6,000 years. The Contemporary Art Center presents the other side of the spectrum housing modern art collections and the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center maintains a stunning exhibit that visitors won’t soon forget.
Art-loving travel nurses have no shortage of options in every region of the United States. Obviously, big cities like New York, L.A., and San Francisco are always going to be great destinations for art fans, but it is equally important to seek out the lesser-known and often surprising destinations where artists have congregated over the years and developed eye-opening art-loving communities.
Where is your favorite destination for appreciating great works of art? Have you ever planned a travel assignment based on the number and quality of artistic destinations in the city? Share your thoughts in the comment section below or drop us a line on our Facebook page.