Fall is the peak time for adventuring and exploring, especially in painfully photogenic and instagram-friendly places like the Hudson Valley. For those who are lovers of both art and hiking, outdoor sculpture parks are your go-to destination this season (and probably during the warmer months too!).
Here are five Hudson Valley sculpture parks that are a must-see road trip destination before they close up (or get too dang cold) this winter:
Opus 40, SaugertiesOpus 40 is Harvey Fite’s crowning achievement. The artist built the six and a half acre stone sculpture by himself with the use of his hands and homemade tools. The sculpture itself is layers of stonework, with no adhesive, going 16 feet below ground and three stories above ground, with intricate pathways and structures branching throughout it.
The 50 acres of nature hiking trails are also included in the property for those interested in more extensive hiking. Visitors can enjoy regular events, including food, and craft beer truck nights with live music.
Open Thursday-Sunday 10:30am-5:30pm until November
Bradford Graves Sculpture Park, Kerhonkson
Bradford Graves Sculpture Park is an outdoor collection of over 200 works of its namesake. Bradford Graves was a sculptor who created his art in harmony with the nature it came from. Both ancient and modern in style, these sculptures resemble the excavation of archaeological sites.
Graves is described as “an alchemist, a physicist, and a philosopher,” and his art heavily reflects these traits. Tour appointments can be made through the website, and all sculptures in the park are available for sale to visitors who are taken with them.
Open daily by appointment until October 31
Storm King Art Center, New Windsor
With 500 acres of ambitious modern and contemporary art pieces, Storm King Art Center is an outdoor art museum dedicated to large scale sculptures and site-specific commissions. Founded in 1960 by the Star Expansion Company, Storm King was originally intended to be a museum devoted to Hudson River School painting, but evolved with the 1966 purchase of thirteen works from the estate of sculptor David Smith.
Today, it is a picture perfect balance of nature of art exhibition. Hike through the park freely and explore the mixture of permanent pieces and visiting exhibitions/collections.
Open Monday 10am-5:30pm, Wednesday-Friday 10am-5:30pm, Saturday-Sunday 9am-5:30pm until November 1 (shortened hours available November 1-December 8)
Kurt Seligmann Center at the Citizens Foundation, Sugar Loaf
While the center itself is not an outdoor art park, the art sculpture trail is what you should visit here. The art sculpture trail at Kurt Seligmann Center at the Citizens Foundation is a path throughout the 50-acre property. The trail does not feature artist Kurt Seligmann’s work, but rather the installation of seven sculptors from throughout New York state. Featured are pieces such as Three Spirals by Julius Medwin, Headless Woman by Michael Jamieson, and Book Tree by Jed Bark.
Open Monday-Friday 10am-3pm
Art Omi, Ghent
- Flickr User: Dough Kerr
At this sculpture and architecture park, the motto is “artistic expression transcends economic, political, and cultural boundaries”. Art Omni is 120 acres of contemporary large scale sculpture and architectural designs. Over 2,000 artists from 100 different countries have been featured here—with more than 60 works of art and architecture currently on display.
Free to explore and discover the exhibits, visitors are encouraged to allow at least an hour to traverse the park and interact with the art and architecture. While this park is open year-round, stop by in the fall for some of the best conditions of the year.
Open daily from dawn till dusk, all Seasons