I’ve always been fond of art, and graduated from college with a degree in art history. While I have not worked in a related field, it has served me well, and it is something I truly love. I am always eager to visit New York City with all its wonderful galleries, magnificent museums, and amazing works of art. And while New York City isn’t too far from Darien, we are fortunate to live in Fairfield County where there are many wonderful local museums. Following are some interesting museums in our own backyard that I encourage you to visit…
The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum
258 Main Street, Ridgefield, CT, 06877 – 203.438.4519 – www.aldrichart.org
The Aldrich is a nationally recognized modern art museum renowned for its presentation of outstanding new art, cultivation of emerging artists, and innovation in museum education. It has no permanent collection, but rotates a variety of high-quality exhibits, several of which are featured at the same time.
The Bruce Museum
1 Museum Drive, Greenwich, CT, 06830 – 203.869.0376 – www.brucemuseum.org
A gem of a museum offering changing exhibitions of fine art, photography, and natural science. Its collections were started by Robert Moffat Bruce, a wealthy textile merchant from the late 19thcentury. It features permanent art exhibits from the work of the local Cos Cob School, natural history exhibits focused on geology, minerals, land formation, and exhibits that focus on the natural history of the Connecticut region.
Fairfield University Art Museum
1073 N Benson Road, Fairfield, CT, 06824 – 203.254.4046 – www.fairfield.edu/museum
The permanent collection features European and American paintings, drawings, prints and photographs, as well as Asian, African and Pre-Columbian objects. This is augmented by antiquities and medieval objects on long-term loan. The varied rotating exhibits showcase works of art in all media from varied world cultures and time periods from ancient to contemporary.
Greenwich Historical Society: Bush-Holley Historic Site
39 Strickland Rd, Cos Cob, CT 06807 – 203.869.6899 – www.hstg.org
The site on Cos Cob Harbor provides visitors with two distinct time periods — the New Nation (1790-1825) and the Cos Cob Art Colony (1890-1920). Eight well-documented rooms within the house feature art, furnishings and objects from these two periods.
Lockwood-Mathews Mansion Museum
295 West Avenue, Norwalk, CT 06850 – 203.838.9799 – www.lockwoodmathewsmansion.com
The magnificent Lockwood-Mathews Mansion in Norwalk commemorates the glamor and larger-than-life grandeur of the Gilded Age. The great mansion is one of the biggest and most beautiful historic house-museums in Connecticut.
Stamford Museum & Nature Center
39 Scofieldtown Road, CT, 06903 – 203.322.1646 – www.stamfordmuseum.org
The former mansion of fashion designer and department store owner Henri Bendel (1868-1936), houses rotating exhibitions. Additionally, the nature center has over 80 acres of trails to walk, and a farm filled with friendly animals to visit.
Weir Farm National Historic Site
735 Nod Hill Road, Wilton, CT, 06897 – 203.834.1896 – www.nps.gov/wefa
A National Park for the Arts, was home to Julian Alden Weir (1852-1919), a leading figure in the American Impressionist movement. The 68-acre national park is the only national park dedicated to American Impressionist painting.
And of course, here in town we are fortunate to have the…
Darien Historical Society
45 Old King’s Highway, CT 06820 – 203.655.9233 – www.darienhistorical.org
The centerpiece of the museum being the 1736 Bates-Scofield Home, which captures life as it was in Early American Darien, known as Middlesex Parish at the time. The permanent collection includes items that convey the history of early Darien and the Bates-Scofield homestead itself. Additionally, they maintain one of the largest costume collections of pre-1935 garments in Connecticut.
The Darien Library provides a variety of museum passes. For more information visit their website at www.darienlibrary.org/museums
Enjoy! If you have any comments or other suggestions, please share them below.