Skip to main content

Your 2023 Spring Guide to Crystal Bridges

Glass building with pink flowers in the foreground

Spring is perhaps the most underrated season at Crystal Bridges.

Summer has its long, sultry days and easy travel. Fall is cozy, crisp, and magical. Winter brings with it the contrasts of the long, cold nights and the heartwarming glow of holiday lights. But the quiet, colorful season of spring deserves a little recognition—it’s one of the best times to make a trip to the museum.

Whether you’re looking to discover new ideas and perspectives in the galleries, take a walk through the woods, celebrate the season with a family event, or just to sit for a while and claim a moment of peace for yourself, there’s plenty to do and enjoy at Crystal Bridges.

To help you make the most of your trip—and the season—we’ve assembled some highlights and recommendations below. Keep reading to check out your spring guide to Crystal Bridges, or use the navigation links to jump to your favorite section.

(Pro Tip: Like most things on the grounds, this guide grows and changes throughout the season. Keep checking back for the latest updates and recommendations, or sign up for eNews to get the latest updates sent straight to your inbox.)


People walking on trails with waterfall

Exhibitions and Experiences

On View Now: Diego Rivera’s America

March 11 – July 31, 2023
$12 (Free for members, SNAP participants, Veterans, and Youth 18 and Under.)

Between the 1920s and ‘40s, Diego Rivera worked in both Mexico and the United States, finding inspiration in the social and cultural life of the two countries. He imagined an America—broadly understood—that shared an Indigenous past and an industrial future, and where cooperation, rather than divisions, were paramount.

Featuring rarely seen works from private collections, major paintings on loan from museums in the United States and Mexico, studies for mural projects in Mexico City, San Francisco, Detroit, and New York, and large-scale digital projections of Rivera’s epic murals, this collection of over 130 works is the first and most comprehensive exhibition focused solely on Rivera’s work in over two decades.

Learn more and get tickets.


In the Evenings: Listening Forest by Rafael Lozano-Hemmer

March 1 – May 28, 2023 | August 30 – December 31, 2023
Closed: Mondays and Tuesdays
Ticket prices vary by day and membership.

Returning for a spring season after its successful debut last fall, the interactive experience in the North Forest isn’t just for the holidays anymore. Created by artist Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, the North Forest experience uses light, sound, and projections to create an interactive walk through the woods.

This site-specific exhibition features eight immersive installations, each one activated by you: your heart rate, your body, your voice, and your movements direct the forest’s response. This project brings together art and technology in a natural setting to create poetic, shared experiences and features a soundtrack composed by electronic musician Scanner (Robin Rimbaud).

Pro Tip: The long spring evenings make it a breeze to book a time to visit, spend the afternoon in the galleries, then head into the forest to explore and control 20-foot stick figures made of light.

Learn more about the exhibition, or check out our guide to what you can expect this season at Listening Forest.


Spring Guide to the Outside

Young boy on bicycle

Crystal Bridges’ trails and grounds offer a completely unique experience in the spring season. As our forest, gardens, and resident wildlife start to wake up from their winter slumber, our outdoor spaces literally begin to buzz with excitement. The trails and grounds team gets excited too!

Here are some outdoor highlights and insights that you won’t want to miss.

Spring at Crystal Bridges
Photo by Ironside Photography / Stephen Ironside.

Crystal Bridges is known for its profusion of flowering spring trees—and we’re adding more! Throughout the season, we’ll be adding flowering trees to different parts of the grounds. On Orchard Trail, keep an eye out for new dogwoods, crabapples, and a new redbud called ‘Tennessee Pink.’

While you’re there, be sure to visit our free outdoor exhibition Architecture at Home.

Pro Tip: The spring season starts off cool and rainy, and warms up considerably by May—so make sure to check the weather! With spring temperatures ranging from the low 40s to the upper 70s, it never hurts to dress in layers before hitting the trails.


Flowering trees aren’t the only show pieces in the landscape. Native spring plants like golden ragwort (Packera aurea) make our gardens glow with shades of golden yellow. But the real spring showstopper comes from our collection of Virginia bluebells (Mertensia virginica). This native ephemeral plant (it goes dormant in summer) will steal your heart with its dangling lavender blue and pink flowers.

This plant is scattered all over our campus, so let us know on social media where your favorite spot is!

Of course, there are more than plants on the grounds; did you know that Northwest Arkansas is in a major migration pattern for birds?

Known as the Central Flyway Migration Corridor, our unique location means that we get to see birds that migrate both to the east and to the west during this time of the year. So get out your binoculars and look for birds like the cerulean and Canada warblers (pictured), as well as painted buntings before they head to their summer homes.

Binoculars or not though, some of the most interesting things that happen on our grounds never get seen by most people.

You might not know this, but we now have three honeybee hives on our property. These bee-zy (couldn’t resist) residents give our beekeepers great joy!

This year, we’ll be splitting our most prolific hive with the hopes of creating a new queen bee for a hive that is currently empty. Look for more details in our blog in the coming months.


Save the Date: Want to learn more about our grounds, gardening, or sustainable landscape practices? Join us for the relaunch of our Discover the Grounds event series on May 6! We’ll explore plants that are cultural icons of Arkansas, and learn more about the unique plants of the natural state.


Membership Makes Everything Better

Guests sitting around a table laughing together

Looking for more ways to make the most of your visits to Crystal Bridges? Become a museum member this season!

Members enjoy a wide range of benefits, including free admission to temporary exhibitions, discounts on tickets and Museum Store purchases, and invitations to members-only events.  Plus, your support helps fund the free or low-cost events, classes, and community outreach that allow Crystal Bridges to make the power of art accessible to all.

Start your membership journey today.


Pro Tip: Considering a trip to our sister contemporary art space, the Momentary? They also have a spring guide that updates through the season with new info and highlights. We recommend checking it out before you stop by!


Ready to start planning your trip to Crystal Bridges? Check out our Plan a Visit page to answer all your questions about visiting the museum, including hours, parking info, accommodations, and more!