The China Art Museum is the new incarnation of the China Pavilion, built for the Shanghai World Expo 2010. With 160,000sqm of floor space, there’s a ton of art, mostly from the past century or so, but not all of it is worth your while.
Over the museums five floors, which are named by altitude, works introduces the ascent of modern art in Shanghai at the end of the 19th and start of the 20th century, the Shanghai Film Animation Studio an a decent selection of advertising and calendar art from the first half of the 20th century.The 33m floor also has some fantastic visiting exhibitions – with rooms previously stocked by The British Museum (London), the Rijksmuseum (Amsterdam), Maisons de Victor Hugo (Paris), the Whitney (New York), and Te Papa (Wellington), but we recommend blitzing the lower floors, generally full of Mao-era kitsch and neo-socialist realism commemorating Chinese historical events
To make the most of your visit, pick up an audio guide (20RMB, 200RMB deposit) on the ground floor and take a lift straight to the floor called ‘49m’,make sure to also check out our guide to streamlining your visit
It's also worth noting, the China Art Palace is free to visit, but you can’t simply show up. You need to first book online. The process is a real headache, especially if you don't read Chinese, so we've created an online guide.