Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, the museum is shaped roughly like a teacup or an upside down terraced hill. It is not unusual to see adults with their children here, going up and down the spiraling ramp. Expect to spend at least half a day going through the galleries and exploring the building. Try to head here early and avoid the weekends when the museum gets extremely crowded.
The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, which opened on October 21, 1959, is one of the best-known museums in New York City and one of the 20th century's most important architectural landmarks. The distinctive building, Wright's last major work, instantly polarized architecture critics upon completion, though today it is widely revered. From the street, the building looks approximately like a white ribbon curled into a cylindrical stack, slightly wider at the top than the bottom. Its appearance is in sharp contrast to the more typically boxy Manhattan buildings that surround it, a fact relished by Wright who claimed that his museum would make the nearby Metropolitan Museum of Art "look like a Protestant barn. Internally, the viewing gallery forms a gentle helical spiral from the ground level up to the top of the building. Paintings are displayed along the walls of the spiral and also in exhibition space found at annex levels along the way.