Arts and culture in Louisville is exploding with talent and creativity. Museums and galleries, indoor and outdoor theaters, and music make the city come alive. Something exciting and enriching is always just around the corner when you’re living in Louisville KY, and there are endless entertainment options for both young and old.
Kentucky Museum of Art and Craft, founded in 1981, is a four story structure in Downtown Louisville’s West Main Street Historic District. The non-profit art museum has 27,000 square feet of exhibition space and includes four galleries. KMAC features contemporary art that explores craft, emphasizing creative techniques, materials and processes, and installs new works every two months. The museum has a gallery retail space featuring works created by more than 400 regional artists, many of which are for sale, and also offers educational programming.
Located just over the Ohio River in New Albany, IN, the Carnegie Center for Art & History is part local history museum, part contemporary art gallery, and features seven visiting exhibitions each year. Visitors can enjoy art representing a variety of media and learn about the creative expression process through different programs and exhibitions that are suitable for all ages. The museum has three permanent history exhibits, including a collection of hand-carved, mechanized dioramas, an Underground Railroad exhibit, and an exhibit about Lucy Higgs Nichols, a former slave who served as a nurse during the Civil War. The Carnegie Center also offers a variety of activities for kids, families, and adults, including “lunch and learns” and family fun workshops.
Theatre & Performing Arts
The state’s premier performing arts venue is The Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts, which is home to many of the city’s arts organizations, including Louisville Ballet, Kentucky Opera, The Louisville Orchestra, PNC Broadway Across America, and StageOne family theater. The Kentucky Center has three theaters and hosts entertainment nearly every night of the year, from Broadway touring productions, to big bands, to acclaimed musicians.
Kentucky Shakespeare is the state’s official Shakespeare Festival and the oldest free Shakespeare Festival in the United States. The non-profit, professional theater company seeks to provide the community with entertaining, accessible performances for all ages. Kentucky Shakespeare offers free performances June through August at the C. Douglas Ramey Amphitheatre in Old Louisville’s Central Park.
Catch a free outdoor concert on the Big Four Lawn in Louisville Waterfront Park during the WFPK Waterfront Wednesday Concert Series. Concerts are held on select Wednesdays from April through September. Grab a seat on the lawn or on the bridge and enjoy performances from a great variety of bands.
Enjoy a free lunchtime concert every first Thursday of the month in the Mayor’s Gallery Listening Room at the historic Louisville Metro Hall during the Mayor’s Music & Arts Series. The Mayor’s Gallery has great acoustics, adding to your listening pleasure, and all shows represent performers and artists from a variety of musical genres.