The Best Modern and Contemporary Art Museums in Paris


Paris is a city famous for many things, and being home to some of the best art museums in the world is one of them.

While you’ve probably heard of the classics like the Louvre and the Musée d’Orsay, many first-time visitors to Paris don’t know about the other incredible museums here.

There are actually over 100 art museums in Paris, and plenty of them focus on modern and contemporary art. So to make sure you don’t miss any must-sees, here’s an insider’s guide to the best modern and contemporary art museums in Paris.

1. Musée d’art moderne de Paris

Photo courtesy of Jean-Pierre Dalbera on Flickr

Situated between the Champs-Elysées and the Eiffel Tower in the 16th arrondissement, the Musée d’art Moderne offers a stunning view of the Seine river. The bold 1930’s Art Deco style architecture contrasts with the exhibition space inside, which has been kept blank to better showcase the art.

And with over 13,000 pieces in their collection, there’s a lot to show off. Focusing on contemporary art from the 20th century onward, the Musée d’art Moderne features many important artists from the era like Dufy, Picasso, and Chagall.

Plus, the Modern Art Museum is actually right next door to the Palais de Tokyo (just across the pavilion), so it’s easy to visit both museums in the same day.

musée d’art moderne de paris – 11 Avenue du Président Wilson, 75116 Paris
metro station: alma-marceau or ièna
opening hours: tuesday – sunday 10AM – 6PM
admission: full price €13 // reduced price €11 // free for those under 18


2. Palais de Tokyo

Photo by Guilhem Vellut on Wikimedia Commons

Thanks to events like Paris Fashion Week, the Palais de Tokyo is one of the most well-known contemporary art spaces in the city. Just a stone’s throw from the Musée d’art Moderne, this contemporary art space is one of a kind.

Making up the other wing adjacent to the Modern Art Museum, the Palais is an open experimental exhibition space dedicated to contemporary art. They feature a variety of exhibitions from well  known as well as up and coming artists from all over the world. Displays range from more traditional paintings and sculptures but tend to include more experimental elements like interactive performances and sensory experiences.

palais de tokyo – 13 avenue du Président-Wilson 75116
metro station: alma-marceau or ièna
opening hours: wednesday – monday  10AM – 6PM
admission: Full price €12


3. Centre Pompidou

Photo by Oh Paris on Flickr

Smack in the middle of the artsy Marais, the Centre Pompidou is easily one of the most colorful and emblematic buildings in Paris.  You can spot the brightly-colored rooftop vents from all over the city; giving a little preview of the museum’s vibrant contents.

Commissioned by President Georges Pompidou in 1969, the Beaubourg was designed to be a multidisciplinary cultural center, which was unheard of at the time. Today, the Centre not only features an exhibition and museum space boasting more than 12,000 artworks; there’s also an extensive library, a movie theater, café, bookshop, and even a rooftop restaurant.

centre pompidou – Place Georges-Pompidou, 75004 Paris
metro station: les halles or rambuteau
opening hours: wednesday – monday 11AM – 9PM
admission: full price €14

4. Fondation Cartier pour l’art contemporain

Photo by Ninara on Flickr

Thanks to its location in the quieter 14th arrondissement, the Fondation Carter is one of the city’s lesser known museums. But if you’re into contemporary art, I would definitely recommend a visit to Fondation Cartier.

The exhibitions space itself is unique, featuring an immense glass building and a lush courtyard garden which compliment the works perfectly. Exhibitions cover all range of contemporary mediums, from painting to photography, to digital design; it’s all here. Collections change regularly and include specially commissioned works from international artists as well as performance art pieces.

fondation cartier – 261 boulevard raspail 75014 paris
metro station: raspail
opening hours: tuesday – sunday 11AM – 8PM
admission: full price €11 // students and under 18 free

5. Fondation Louis Vuitton

Photo courtesy of Fondation Louis Vuitton – Sourced from their website

Inaugurated in 2014 by the LVMH group, the Fondation Louis Vuitton is one of the city’s newest (and largest) contemporary art museums. Designed by renowned architect Frank Gehry, the glass tiled, futuristic building has already become an iconic part of the Parisian landscape.

Now, if you’re a contemporary art buff, there’s a good chance you’ve heard of the Fondation Louis Vuitton. And this place really lives up to its reputation.

The immense exhibition space features all kinds of artists, and a variety of mediums. Mixed medium, art installations, performing arts, and sound and light installations are just some of what you can expect to see on display here. The Fondation also comissions pieces and collections from up and coming international artists, so this is a great place to discover some new favorites.

fondation louis vuitton – 8, Avenue du Mahatma Gandhi 75116 Paris
metro station: les sablons
opening hours: wednesday – monday 11AM – 8PM
admission: full price €14

And since the FLV is located within the Jardin d’Acclimation in Paris‘ luxe 16th arrondissement, there’s plenty to see and do after your visit to the museum. There’s actually a little something for everyone here. Adults can enjoy outdoor activities, hikes, or cycling in the Bois de Boulogne while the Jardin d’Acclimation is a favorite with children of all ages.

And if you’re looking for more to do around the Bois de Boulogne, check out our full guide here.


Now you know a little more about the best contemporary and modern art museums in Paris! I hope you’ll get the chance to discover them all.


See you soon in Paris!

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