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San Diego Museum of Art

San Diego Museum of Art
San Diego Museum of Art

© Elsa Mickelsen

The San Diego Museum of Art in Balboa Park holds its own among the country's major museums, housing nationally-renowned collections of European old masters and American paintings and sculpture from the 19th and 20th centuries. Also included is an impressive Asian collection, excellent examples of 20th century European modernism, and a quickly expanding collection of contemporary and Latin American art. The Museum also includes the Edwin Binney 3rd Collection of South Asian paintings--an outstanding and unusual example of such works, rarely seen outside of India.

While the museum's collections are vast and range in date from 5,000 B.C. to 2001 A.D., it is particularly famous for its collection of Spanish old master paintings, reflected even in the sculptural details on the building's façade, which features aspects of the works of Murillo, Zurbarán, Ribera, Cotán, and El Greco. While the building was constructed in the 1920s long before there was a collection, the museum currently features paintings by each of these famous artists.

The Museum was established in 1922, funded by local businessman Appleton S. Bridges and built on the site of the fine arts building for the 1915 Panama-California International Exposition in Balboa Park. The area's oldest and largest art museum, the San Diego Museum of Art presents major art exhibitions from around the world, as well as an extensive schedule of supporting cultural and educational programs.

Attraction Information

  • Hours:
  • Memorial Day through September 26: Tuesday through Sunday: 10am to 6pm, Thursday: 10am to 9pm
  • Closed Mondays
  • Admission:
  • Adults: $12
  • Seniors (65+) and Military: $9
  • Students with ID: $8
  • Youths (6-17): $4.50
  • Children 5 and under: Free
  • Members: Free
  • Family 4-Pack, Two adults and two youth, age 17 and younger: $28
  • Contact:
  • Address: 1450 El Prado, Balboa Park, San Diego, CA
  • Phone: 619-232-7931
  • Website:
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