Here is a list of the Best Art Galleries in Nairobi. Nairobi hosts the majority of the Art Galleries found in Nairobi. Art galleries are places where upcoming and established artists can exhibit or perform their visual art and artistic performances. Such locations sell or display artwork.
For years, the Nairobi art scene has been thriving. When in Nairobi, here are the top galleries to visit for contemporary and traditional art you should visit.
List Of Best Art Galleries In Nairobi
1. Banana Hill Art Gallery
Banana Hill Art Gallery is one of the most prestigious art galleries in the city and the country. The famous art gallery is located just 10km from Red Hill Art Gallery, and you can access it via Limuru Road and Ndenderu-Banana Links Road. The art gallery was established in 1995 by Rahab and Shine Tani to support artists in Kenya. Banana Hill Art Gallery now hosts over 70 artists from all over Africa and has more than 20-priced pieces. They sell sculptures and paintings by both upcoming and established artists. The space strives to bring artists and clients together, ensuring that talented artists have a place to showcase and benefit from their talent. The art gallery is open from Monday to Saturday (10 am to 6 pm) and Sundays (12 pm to 6 pm).
Contacts: 0711 756 911, 070 080 7362, 0733 882 660
2. Polka Dot Gallery
Polka Dot Art Gallery is a gallery located in the leafy suburbs of Karen. It showcases art from East African artists and selects international artists. This newcomer to the art scene debuted in 2016 and has since become a great space for both local and international contemporary artists. The space aspires to be more than just another exhibition space where art is hung, but also a place where educational and inspiring conversations begin as a result of the pieces on display. You can apply to exhibit photography, sculpture, painting, or any other form of art. Polka Dot Art Gallery exhibits all kinds of art pieces including photography, paintings, sculptures and prints. The gallery is open on Tuesdays to Sundays from 10 am to 5 pm.
3. The GoDown Art Centre
The GoDown Art Centre was established in 2003. Over the years, it has transformed into a multidisciplinary centre for contemporary art that nurtures East Africa’s creative potential. The centre has housed some of Kenya’s most renowned artists, including Peterson Kamwathi. They host exhibitions that range from photography to paintings and sculptures. The space is well-known for the Kenya Burning photographic exhibition, which demonstrated to the world the extent of the country’s violence following the contested 2007 presidential elections. The GoDown Art Centre has also hosted local events such as Dunda Mtaani and Nai Ni Who and the GoDown Gig, which are great at showcasing artists’ skills. The GoDown Art Centre is located at Khayawe Rd in Kilimani. Regular shows and cultural nights are usually held at the gallery. It is open from 9 am to 5 pm on weekdays.
Contact: 0726 992 200
4. Circle Art Gallery
Visit Circle Art Gallery to enjoy Kenyan art if you are ever along Riara Road. It is Lavington’s top gallery. The centre was established in 2012 with the main goal of promoting contemporary art from East Africa. Circle Art Gallery in East and Central Africa’s home for contemporary art. East African art is breaking into the global art scene, and the term Circle Art has come to represent this process. The gallery’s curated and exhibited art is most thought-provoking and demanding. The Circle Art Gallery is open from Monday to Saturday from 10 am to 5 pm.
Contact: 0790 289 991
5. Red Hill Art Gallery
The gallery is along Julian’s Road, Gatatha Road, Redhill, Red Hill Art Gallery was built to be light and airy, tucked away in a beautiful garden with views of the Nairobi skyline. It’s open daily from 11 am to 5 pm. The gallery provides a stunning and wholly appropriate space devoted to a passion for African Art. The gallery owns a large collection, amassed over 25 years by the owners, that amounts to a very astutely selected cross-section of the finest modern and contemporary African artwork, including paintings and sculptures. This collection provides the foundation of the exhibition program.
Contacts: 0700 108989, 0700 108 626
6. One Off Contemporary Art Gallery
Carol Lees, an art enthusiast, established One-Off Gallery in 1994. It features work by both local and international artists with ties to Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda, and Sudan. Some of the many artists whose work you’ll see featured as you walk around the gallery include Peterson Kimathi, Peter Ngugi, Lisa Milroy, Anthony Okello, Elias Mung’ora, Ehoodi Kichapi, and Harrison Mburu. One-Off Contemporary Gallery was named to Departure Magazine’s list of the best things to do in Nairobi in 2011. If you want to visit this magnificent place, it is located at 16 Rosslyn Lone Tree Estate off Limuru Road. It is open from 11 am to 5 pm from Tuesday to Sunday.
Contact: 0722 521 870
7. Matbronze Art Gallery and Foundry
Matbronze was founded in 1987 by Mathews Denis to make African wildlife timeless. It depicts the beauty of Africa’s wildlife through handcrafted bronze sculptures. Animals, plants, accessories, and home items are among the sculptures available. The Art Gallery is located on Kifaru Lane in Nairobi on the Karen Blixen property in the Karen suburb and is open daily from 8 am to 5.30 pm.
Contact: 0721 762 855
8. Upepo Photography Gallery
Upepo is a Swahili word for wind. It was founded in 2017 by Cyril Villemain and is located in Artists Collective Kilimani, Nairobi. Upepo is unique in that all of its artefacts are of Kenyan origin. The gallery exhibits original photographs as works of art, each with a limited edition of 50 prints. The photographs are developed in Kenya, and the frames are handcrafted by local artisans. The majority of the pieces are also signed by the photographers (owners) and are available for sale in both the local and international markets. Upepo is temporarily closed.
9. Nairobi Art Gallery
The Nairobi Art Gallery, which is located on Kenyatta Avenue, first opened its doors in 2013. It is part of Kenya’s National Museums and houses some of Africa’s most valuable treasures, such as jewellery, paintings, tapestries, trinkets, and other items. The gallery is small, but don’t be surprised if you fall in love with a new piece of art every time you visit. Aside from housing works of art, the Nairobi Art Gallery is a historic site because it was formerly the Provisional Commissioner’s Office, where birth, marriage, and death certificates were issued, hence the nicknames “hatches, matches, and dispatches.” It also houses the zero point from which all distances in Kenya are measured. It is open daily from 8.30 am to 5 pm.
Contact: 020 3742 131
10. Karen Village
One of Nairobi’s top art museums, Karen Village takes pride in being a hub for African artists. The gallery is situated along Ngong Road and is crammed with the best pieces of artwork. Karen Art Village boasts of being a haven of creativity, music, heritage, and peace. It hosts painters, glass artists, artisans, framers, sculptors, art galleries, and event agencies. While at the gallery, you can also visit their restaurant, bar and grill, or get accommodation services.
Contact: 0708 652 624
11. Art Space Kenya
Opened in 2015, The Art Space has evolved from a commercial art gallery based in Kenya, into an online space (https://theartspace.co.ke/) with regular pop-ups in popular and sometimes unusual spaces around Nairobi. Here, you will get numerous contemporary arts from Africa. The online centre also links artists with the contemporary art market, locally and internationally. They also offer art advisory services for new collectors and assist current collectors to curate and catalogue their existing collections.
Contact: 0790 498 848
12. Nairobi Railways Museum Art Gallery and Centre
Educultural Artists Kenya (ECAK) established the Nairobi Railways Museum Art Gallery and Center to display and promote artists’ works as well as to mentor up-and-coming artists. The centre also offers studio space to regional artists at discounted rates. One of the few places in Nairobi where you can enjoy street art is the art gallery. In addition, a mural painted by one of Nairobi’s top artists adorns each train carriage. Kenya Railways runs the Nairobi Railways Museum Art Gallery and Center, which chronicles the development of rail travel in Kenya.
Contact: +254714 140 028
13. The Collective Restaurant and Art Gallery
Nairobi’s ultimate hidden gem. It’s barely visible from the outside – a nondescript door in a nondescript corner of Nairobi CBD. But once inside, you’ll find yourself in one of Nairobi’s best fine-dining restaurants and fine art galleries. Take a seat and admire the beautiful artwork on the walls around you, or spend some time exploring the restaurant’s two levels to soak in the art and atmosphere. Then prepare yourself for some delectable food and expertly prepared drinks.
Mondays 12:00 Noon – 11:30 pm
Tuesday – Saturday 7:00 am – 11:30 pm
Sundays 11:00 am – 8:00 pm
Contact: +254 20 514 760 00
14. Kuona Artists Collective
Kuona Artists’ Collective is located on Likoni Close off Denis Pritt Road. The artists’ collective is still located where the former Kuona Trust used to be. But the name, style of organisation and artists’ vision for its future is very different. Kuona Trust was launched back in 1995 and it has been a space where countless Kenyan artists have worked together and developed their creative skills. Several artists in residence work in a variety of disciplines at Kuona Artists Collective. Although there is no formal art gallery on the premises, you can walk around and meet the artists in their workshops. Kuona Artists Collective hosts its famous ‘Satos’ once a month, bringing together artists, performers, and independent designers for a day of events, music, and food. Kuona Artists Collective is open every day from 9 am to 8 pm.
Contact: 0733 742752
15. Kioko Mwitiki Art Gallery
Kioko Mwitiki, a renowned Kenyan sculptor, owns the gallery. It is located in Lavington and features a mixed exhibition of paintings, sculptures, macrame, and prints by various artists. As one of Nairobi’s oldest art galleries, it’s a popular venue for both emerging and established artists to exhibit their latest works. Kioko Mwtiki is still at the forefront of contemporary art in Kenya and East Africa after more than two decades. If you want to understand the pieces better, the friendly staff will gladly show you around and explain them to you. If you’re feeling inspired to make something, you can pick up some art supplies in the gift shop.
Contact: 0746 844 025
16. Zanji Art
Zanji Art store is located in Muthaiga Mini Market. Zanji Art is a small workshop run by the delightful art dealer and jewellery maker Njee Muturi. Njee specialises in antiques and traditional African artwork, displaying beautiful works of art that you can buy and take home. The art store has stocked a collection of masks, statues, headrests, trinkets, and oddities.
Contact: 0721 454820
17. The Golden Eagle Art Gallery
Golden Eagle Art Gallery was pioneered by Mr Sebastian M. Mutinda and is located along Lang’ata South Road in Nairobi. The art gallery has played a major role in growing the Nairobi artistic space. Its main art pieces include sculpture, African attire, jewellery, antiquities, paintings, and other works. The works, created by both local and international artists, Nature, culture, creativity, innovation, and imagination inspire the creation of reality.
Contact: 0758 958 548
18. Photizo Art Gallery
Photizo was founded in 2013 by its Director and Curator, Lydia. Photizo is located at the Valley Arcade Shopping Center in Lavington, Nairobi. It features artwork from established and emerging local and international artists. Although the artists are mostly from Eastern and Central Africa, their works can be shipped anywhere in the world. Photizo Art Gallery is open from 9 am to 5 pm every Monday to Saturday.
Contact: 0721 323 406
19. Shifteye Art Gallery
Shifteye began as a modern art gallery and quickly grew into a popular creative space. While their focus has shifted to photography services, Shifteye continues to support Nairobi’s creative community through regular art exhibitions, cultural events, and other activities. It is found in Hurlingham’s Priory Place. It is open on weekdays from 10 am to 5 pm.
20. Uweza Art Gallery
The Uweza Art Gallery is located in Kibera’s Olympic Estate. It gives young artists space and materials to create and market their original art, which is sold online, at the gallery, and events and exhibitions.
Contact: 0714 371 964
Other Art Galleries in Nairobi include,
- Kinuthia galleries
- Brush Tu Art
- Bobea Art Centre Kenya
- Kaloki Nyamai Studio
- Adoko Art Gallery
- Noir Gallery
- Gallery Watatu
- Nairobi Contemporary Art Institute (NCAI)
- Kuona Artists Collective, Centre for the Visual Arts
- Graffiti Wall
- Bonzo Art Gallery
- Roweinay Works of Art
- Tribal Gallery
- U.M Gallery
- Datom Tribal Art Gallery