A modern, perfectly round museum split over two levels. Regular entry is ¥310 and gives you access to six galleries. If you want to view the special exhibitions, there is a fee of around ¥1,000 – but it varies depending on the exhibition. If you buy both tickets, the special exhibition is ¥100 cheaper.
The artwork for which the museum is most well known is the “swimming pool” by Leandro Erlich in the center of the building. Visitors used to be able to view the pool from the top for free but this has recently changed, and is now only for those with special exhibition tickets.
The regular exhibit can be leisurely perused in about one hour. Together with the special exhibition, you could spend about two hours here.
The building itself was designed by SANAA – the Pritzker Prize winning architectural superstar team of Kazuyo Sejima and Ryue Nishizawa. The intention of the design was to create a sense of place with no front or back, with the 360 degrees of glass providing both light and a sense of opening to the outside.
Photos, backpacks and luggage are not permitted in the galleries, but there are lockers available for ¥100 near the entrance.
There are discounts available in conjunction with other tickets such as the Hokuriku 1 day bus pass and the Link Pass (which also provides discounts at the Mori Art Museum in Tokyo and the Benesse Art Site Naoshima in Kagawa.
Children (under 18) can get in for free, while university students can get a ticket for ¥280. Payment can be made in cash or by credit card.
The museum is located adjacent to Kenrokuen and Kanazawa Castle Park. It’s an easy walk from either and from the center of Kanazawa. If taking the bus from the east exit of Kanazawa Station, take a bus from stop 3 or 6 and get off at Kanazawa 21-Seiki Bijutsukan / Kenrokuen (Mayumizaka-guchi). If going by bicycle, there is a parking area and Machi Nori station on the city hall side of the museum.