Hot Springs is home to a growing collection of notable public art. From murals celebrating Hot Springs rich history, attractions, and culture, to its sculpture garden, permanent and temporary exhibits at the Hot Springs Convention Center, and more, the spa city serves as a stunning backdrop for creative expression.
The Hot Springs art scene is an exciting and eclectic mix of styles from contemporary to traditional. Wherever you are in the city, you’re only a short walk from a fine art gallery, a pop-up exhibit, or one of the city’s extensive public art pieces. The first Friday of each month is a special occasion, and galleries all around Hot Springs host openings of new exhibits for the monthly “Gallery Walk,” a local tradition for more than 28 years. For its efforts in promoting the arts, Hot Springs was named #4 among the 100 Best Art Towns in America!
Art galleries in Hot Springs feature artwork by local, regional, national and even international artists. Fine art and special events, including live painting by local artists, musicians, local author book readings and seasonal festivity, are what you can expect at the sophisticated Justus Fine Art Gallery. Some of The Natural State’s most talented artists are featured at Gallery Central, a popular spot all about variety.
Whittington Gallery Studios is a great place to see fine art in a casual atmosphere. They even offer art classes if you feel like making something yourself. The Circle Gallery at Emergent Arts features emerging artists exhibiting in a professional setting with themed exhibits. See works from various artists, including Thomas Kinkade, at American Art Gallery and Gifts, featuring pottery, woodturnings, sculpture and more. Artists Workshop Gallery is a fine art cooperative exhibiting original works of 30 local artists.
You can even enjoy art while you are dining. The Avenue, a fine dining restaurant adjacent to The Waters hotel features a different artist’s work each month on their gallery wall. The exhibit opens the last Sunday evening of each month with an Art & Wine Dinner, Kollective Coffee+Tea, an upscale coffee shop, which doubles as a gallery routinely featuring the work of a different artist and is also the home to Wednesday Night Poetry, a weekly poetry event that has been every Wednesday night for over 30 years.
Landmark Building—Henderson State University is a museum art/humanities gallery at the Henderson State University’s Hot Springs campus featuring new themed exhibits each quarter.
Pottery is an ancient artform that never goes out of style, and Hot Springs celebrates handmade art by local artists. Fox Pass Pottery is a low-key studio full of high-quality pieces by Jim and Barbara Larkin. From vases to ceramic toads, Dryden Pottery now features the work of multiple generations of this talented family. A slightly newer artform, glassblowing is a beautiful and exciting craft you can watch in person at the Riley Art Glass Studio! And don’t miss the beautiful wood creations of sculptor Gene Sparling at his gallery, Forest Path Gallery.
The Theater is never the same twice, so surprise yourself when you’re in Hot Springs. An eccentric local stage that never ceases to delight, The Hot Springs Pocket Community Theatre will be the part of your trip you can’t stop talking about. For all-you-can-eat comedy, musicals, drama and the state’s #1 dinner buffet, bring the family to the Hot Springs Bathhouse Dinner Theatre. Or for a show that will keep you on the edge of your seat, don’t miss Maxwell Blade at the Historic Malco Theatre.
Some of the hottest music venues in Arkansas are right here in Hot Springs! Legendary night spot for more than a century, The Ohio Club has live music seven nights a week and the best drinks in town since prohibition (and during). Speaking of dubious reputations, Maxine’s Live is a fantastic venue named after an infamous Bathhouse Row brothel madam that boasts new music every weekend and a wicked Bacon Bloody Mary!
Prefer something a little more personal? The Big Chill is a laid back venue for songwriters and music lovers that feels like a house party. Rocker venue The Blitzed Pig is a great spot for soul food and rock ‘n’ roll on a regular basis. How about an upscale concert and white-tablecloth affair? You’ll find it in the lobby at the historic Arlington Hotel.
For a big and flashy concert experience, catch a show and the big game at Silk’s Bar and Grill inside Oaklawn Racing & Gaming. Some of the biggest names and events make a stop at the Bank OZK Arena, a huge local venue with seating for 6,000. And to see a show with the whole family, take a break from the rides and make your way to the Timberwood Amphitheater inside Magic Springs Theme and Water Park.