Although it doesn’t get the same hype as the Seattle Art Museum (especially given the SAM’s lavish reopening in early 2007), the Frye’s intimate, off-the-beaten-path cluster of galleries is quietly extraordinary. The three main galleries display rotating works from Emma and Charles Frye’s sizable permanent collection, mostly 19th- and 20th-century representational art from Munich-based painters (including quite a few pieces by Frank Weston Benson and Winslow Homer). The outer galleries are more modern and host eyebrow-raising temporary exhibits that range from sound sculptures made of wooden clogs to retrospectives on outré artists like Henry Darger, Robyn O’Neil, David C. Kane, and Slovenia’s NSK art collective.
Tip: The museum has a wonderful little café that is by far the best lunch option in the immediate neighborhood.
Admission: Free. Closed Monday.