8. The Nicholas Roerich Museum honors a Russian artist who painted the Himalayas
The Nicholas Roerich Museum, nestled right next to Riverside Park on West 107th Street, is a museum dedicated to prolific Russian artist Nicholas Roerich. Much of Roerich’s artwork focused on nature scenes from the Himalayas, but in his free time, he was also an archeologist, costume and set designer, writer, philosopher, and public figure. Housed in a three-story townhouse are over 200 works of art ranging from paintings of the Himalayas to sketches from his early days designing sets for Russian ballets, including The Rite of Spring.
The museum was originally located in the Master Apartments at 103rd Street and Riverside Drive, built for Roerich in 1929. Roerich received three nominations for the Nobel Peace Prize for his dedication to preserving wartime art, artifacts, and architecture. His activism led to the Roerich Pact, an inter-American treaty that gave legal recognition to the defense of cultural objects over military defense.