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Frequently Asked Questions

Crystal Bridges architecture and pond

Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art encompasses 120 acres of Ozark woods, over five miles of trails, and a unique building designed by acclaimed architect Moshe Safdie. The museum features both a permanent collection and temporary exhibitions, a Museum Store, a restaurant (Eleven) and Coffee Bar, a Frank Lloyd Wright house, a library, and more. Explore answers to some of the frequently asked questions about the museum and grounds.

How did the museum get its name?
Crystal Bridges takes its name from Crystal Spring—a natural spring on the museum’s wooded site that feeds into the museum ponds—and from the unique bridge construction incorporated into the building design.

Who was the architect of Crystal Bridges?
The building was designed by renowned architect Moshe Safdie. Safdie is an architect, urban planner, educator, theorist, and author who embraces a comprehensive and humane design philosophy. Safdie is committed to architecture that responds to human needs and aspirations and is informed by the geographic, social, and cultural elements that define a place.

What is in the collection?
Crystal Bridges’ permanent collection spans five centuries of American artworks from early American to the present and is always free to view. Crystal Bridges is committed to telling broad and inclusive stories by acquiring and showcasing the highest quality works by artists underrepresented in art history and conventional museum frameworks. Works such as Asher B. Durand’s Kindred Spirits, Gilbert Stuart’s George Washington, and Georgia O’Keeffe’s Jimson Weed are displayed alongside contemporary artists such as Kerry James Marshall, Maya Lin, Fritz Scholder, Jaune Quick-To-See-Smith, Felix Gonzales-Torres, and Amy Sherald represent some of the finest achievements in American art. The collection continues to grow, while the museum also offers temporary exhibitions that complement the collection and can also reveal art’s connections to equality and justice.

What else can I see at Crystal Bridges besides the art?
Crystal Bridges is a vibrant, engaging place that offers a variety of activities for visitors. In addition to the galleries, the museum complex encompasses a Library, the hands-on engagement space at the Studio, a glass-enclosed gathering hall for lectures, films, and other events, a Museum Store, food and drink options, and areas for outdoor concerts and public events. In addition, more than five miles of walking and biking trails through the museum’s 120-acre grounds offer visitors a chance to immerse themselves in the beautiful Ozark landscape and enjoy sculptures, gardens, and interactive education areas.

What are the museum’s hours?
View the Plan a Visit page.

What are the museum’s “Dos and Don’ts” regarding visitation?
Review the museum’s COVID-19 visitation policies.
Review the museum’s visitation guidelines.

What is the admission price?
General admission to Crystal Bridges is sponsored by Walmart. There is no cost to view the permanent collection galleries. There may occasionally be an admission fee to view special, temporary exhibitions.

Is food and drink available onsite?
Yes. Eleven, the museum’s restaurant, is located in a glass-enclosed bridge overlooking the ponds. Eleven offers a delicious menu of American cuisine for lunch on Wednesday through Monday, with small plates and drinks available on Wednesday and Friday evenings.

The Coffee Bar is located near the main lobby between the Guest Services desk and Eleven restaurant.

Learn about our food and drink options.

Is there a Museum Store?
Yes. The Museum Store, designed by architect Marlon Blackwell, offers educational and art-centric toys, books, gifts, and jewelry inspired by art found at Crystal Bridges, and prints of many of its most popular works. Original works by some of the finest artists and artisans in the region also are available for purchase.

Are reservations required for a group tour?
Groups of 10 or more desiring a guided tour should make a reservation at least two weeks prior to the date of the group’s visit. For more information or to schedule a group tour, call (479) 418-5746 or visit our Group Tours Page.

What programming is available for school groups?
The Willard and Pat Walker School Visit Program includes a guided tour, pre- and post-visit materials to use in the classroom, a 30-minute lunch provided by Eleven, the museum’s restaurant, and souvenir gift bags for each of the students. There are several themed tours to choose from.

Note: the museum is currently offering Virtual School Field Trips during this time of social distancing.

How do I access the Crystal Bridges Trail and the Art Trail? Crystal Bridges Trail can be reached from downtown Bentonville. The trailhead entrance is on Northeast 3rd Street between A and B Streets (across from the splash park). Crystal Bridges Trail can also be accessed from Compton Gardens’ entrance on North Main Street, or from Northeast A Street north of the museum. The Art Trail begins at James Turrell’s Skyspace installation, The Way of Color, on the Crystal Bridges Trail. It leads to the museum’s south lobby. Learn more about our trails.

Can I rent facilities at the museum for a special event?
Several of the museum’s facilities, including the beautiful Great Hall, meeting rooms, classrooms and the grounds are available for rental. Learn about event and space rental options.

How is Crystal Bridges tied to Walmart?
Crystal Bridges is a nonprofit organization focused solely on creating a world-class museum for the benefit of the public. The museum was founded by Alice Walton, who also serves as chairperson of the Crystal Bridges Board of Directors. Because of its commitment to the educational and cultural development of Northwest Arkansas, the Walton Family Foundation has provided significant funding to help make the dream of Crystal Bridges a reality. In July, 2011, Walmart announced a grant that will sponsor general public admission to the museum. However, Walmart Stores, Inc. is in no way connected to the development, construction, or planning of the museum or the development and ownership of the permanent collection.

How do I submit exhibition proposals?
Crystal Bridges is looking for temporary exhibitions featuring diverse artists and subjects which are thematic, inclusive, accessible, smart, timely, and innovative. Review our guidelines for submission.