The Museum District comprises three major museums: the Alte Pinakothek, the Neue Pinakothek, and the Pinakothek der Moderne. Nearby is the Glyptothek, the State Collection of Antiquities, and Lenbachhaus. The Alte Pinakothek was founded by Ludwig I, designed by Leo von Klenze, and opened in 1836. It houses the collections of Bavarian dukes, electors, and kings, as well as the treasures of dissolved monasteries. Today, the museum holds priceless masterpieces of 14th- to 18th-century art.

Alte Pinakothek

  • Barer Str. 27

  • 089 23 805 216

  • U2 Theresienstraße, Tram 27


  • Open 10am–6pm Tue–Sun (until 8pm Tue); closed some hols

  • Adm: €5.50 (reduced €4); Sun €1

Neue Pinakothek

  • Barer Str. 29

  • 089 23 805 195

  • U2: Theresienstraße, Tram 27


  • Open 10am–6pm Wed–Mon (until 8pm Wed); closed some hols

  • Adm: as above

Pinakothek der Moderne

  • Barer Str. 40

  • 089 23 805 360

  • U2: Theresienstraße, Tram 27


  • Open 10am–6pm Tue–Sun (until 8pm Thu & Fri); closed some hols

  • Adm: €9.50 (reduced €6); Sun €1

Museum Guide

The Alte Pinakothek’s collections are housed on two floors. German painting up to 1500 is located on the ground floor. On the first floor, German painting after 1500, Old Dutch Masters, Italian Renaissance painting, 17th-century French, Flemish, and Dutch painting, and a somewhat smaller Spanish collection are on display. More than 700 works of art are on view in the museum’s 19 main rooms and 47 side galleries. The cafeteria and a bookshop are also located on the ground floor.

Floorplan of the Alte Pinakothek

The English-style Café Klenze opened in 2005 in the Alte Pinakothek. It serves cakes and gateaux.

Audio guides are sometimes included in the admission price.

An annual pass for all three Pinakothek museums costs €70 (a €40 saving).

The Alte Pinakothek was largely reconstructed after World War II.

Top 10 Paintings
  1. Battle of Alexander at Issus

    Altdorfer’s 1529 painting depicts the decisive moment of Alexander the Great’s victory over the Persian King Darius.

  2. Deposition from the Cross

    Dramatic lighting characterizes Rembrandt’s 1633 masterpiece. It is exhibited in the Dutch painting collection, which also features landscapes and other works.

  3. Land of Cockaigne

    Breughel, the most famous representative of the Flemish School, offers a satirical depiction of gluttony and idleness. This piece is part of a section also housing a large collection of Rubens’ paintings.

  4. Pietà

    Sandro Botticelli’s 1495 painting captivates the viewer with its rich red hues and strong contrasts. It is one of the masterpieces in the Italian painting section.

  5. Portrait of Karl V

    In 1548, the Italian painter Titian created this portrait of Emperor Karl V on the occasion of the Reichstag of Augsburg (1547).

  6. The Rape of the Daughters of Leukippos

    Rubens’ 1618 high Baroque masterpiece.

  7. Portrait of Willem van Heythuisen

    Hals’ magnificent painting (1625–30) is an outstanding example of Dutch portraiture. The collection includes landscapes and other works.

  8. Disrobing of Christ

    El Greco created this sombre work between 1585 and 1608. It is part of the small yet exquisite collection of Spanish paintings.

  9. Four Apostles

    The Albrecht Dürer collection documents the development of the artist from his Self-Portrait in Fur Coat (1500) to the Four Apostles (1526), painted two years before his death.

  10. Adoration of the Magi

    The late Gothic work by Holbein the Elder from 1502 is one part of the Eight Scenes from the Kaisheimer altar.

Neue & Pinakothek der Moderne

  1. Neptune’s Horses

    In this 1892 painting, Walter Crane fuses Pre-Raphaelite expression with Art Nouveau and Symbolist influences.

  2. The Poor Poet

    Carl Spitzweg’s famous 1839 painting captures the spirit of the Biedermeier period.

  3. Boys on the Beach

    Dating from 1898, this work by Max Liebermann exemplifies the preoccupation of German Impressionists with capturing the play of light in their work.

  4. Breakfast in the Studio

    Edouard Manet’s painting from 1868 – a seminal work of strong light and dark contrasts that heralds the beginning of Impressionism – is one of the highlights of the Neue Pinakothek.

  5. Play of the Waves

    Arnold Böcklin’s oeuvre was heavily inspired by classical mythological themes. This work from 1883 depicts water nymphs, mermaids, and sea gods in a subtly erotic Neo-Baroque manner.

  6. The Classic Modern Collection

    The museum’s collection is divided into two principal sections. The Classic Modern encompasses the period up to 1960 and features works by Kirchner, Nolde, Braque, Picasso, Klee, Beckmann, and others.

  7. The Contemporary Art Collection

    This section documents the art scene from 1960 onward and includes works by Beuys, Baselitz, Warhol, de Kooning, Twombly, and others.

  8. The Graphic Arts Collection

    A wide range of works from the Old Masters (Rembrandt, Titian) to Cézanne are some of the highlights of this collection, along with modern graphic works by Baselitz and Wols, and Franz Marc’s pen-and-ink drawing The Tower of the Blue Horses (1912). Over 45,000 drawings and roughly 350,000 prints are shown in rotating exhibitions.

  9. The Architecture Collection

    Some 350,000 architectural drawings and plans, roughly 100,000 photographs, and approximately 500 models are presented in rotating exhibits on the ground floor of the Pinakothek der Moderne.

  10. The Design Collection

    Modern utilitarian objects are the theme of this nearly 60,000-strong collection. The exhibits range from chairs (Thonet room), to 1960s Pop furniture, to objects from the world of aerodynamics and computer design.

On this list numbers 1–5 are in the Neue Pinakothek; 6–10 are in the Pinakothek der Moderne.

For an excellent introduction to the Pinakothek der Moderne, visit

Museum & Art District

Founded by Ludwig I, the Neue Pinakothek was opened in 1853; it was destroyed in 1944. The new structure, designed by Alexander von Branca, was inaugurated nearly four decades later, in 1981. With a permanent collection of over 4,500 paintings and 300 sculptures, the Neue Pinakothek is one of the most important museums of 19th-century art. The spacious building designed by Stephan Braunfels for the Pinakothek der Moderne was inaugurated in 2002 as a site for art of the 20th and 21st centuries. With over 20,000 sq m (215,300 sq ft) of floor space, the museum provides ample room for both permanent and special exhibitions. All galleries are grouped around a central rotunda and linked via a network of stairs. At first criticized because of the exorbitant building costs (€121 million), the museum has since been acknow­ledged as one of the most impressive art collections in the world. It is also the biggest art museum in Germany. The three Pinakotheks in the Museum District are soon to be joined by additional museums such as the Brandhorst collection, which is opening in early 2009. The Glyptothek, the Museum of Antiquities, and the Lenbachhaus are within easy walking distance of each other and constitute the nexus of the Art District. The Museum District is also home to dozens of private galleries.

Rotunda, Pinakothek der Moderne Top 10 Events in Construction of the Pinakothek der Moderne
  1. 1990: Planning begins

  2. 1992: Stephan Braunfels wins design competition

  3. 1993: Bavaria asks that donations cover 10 per cent of building costs

  4. 1994: The PDM Foundation raises 30 million DM

  5. 1995: Decision is made to build the museum

  6. 1996: Turning the sod

  7. 1998: Raising-of-the-roof ceremony

  8. 2000: Dispute over extra costs (30 million DM)

  9. Structural damage on roof

  10. 2002: Museum opens

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