The Cool List

Baltimore is fast becoming a cultural mecca — take a look at what people around the nation are saying about Charm City.

Baltimore's Inner Harbor

Baltimore’s arts scene — as well as MICA and its alumni — have been singled out by PBS, Yelp, Forbes, Southwest: The Magazine, The New York Times, and the travel giant Expedia.

PBS' "Samantha Brown's Places to Love" showcased Baltimore, citing the city's wide array of neighborhoods that offer "an exceptional diversity of experiences." The show called attention to Baltimore's infectious spirit and hospitality. During the program, Brown also spoke to MICA aluma and MacArthur Foundation Fellow Joyce J. Scott ’70 (Art Education B.F.A.), along with Kevin Brown of Nancy's Cafe in the Fred Lazarus IV Center, about the the impact artists are having on Baltimore.

WATCH the episode:

Yelp's data team recently compared ratings, reviews, and cuisine diversity to reveal where its users love to eat as it named Baltimore among the Top 10 Foodie Cities. In its roundup, Yelp said, "Charm City offers an array of dining spots, from casual pubs to award-winning chefs to food halls" as it noted the city's food scene has expanded from "crab cakes and old bay seasoning."

We recently polled students about their favorite places to eat, and their choices — including video reviews — can be found at Baltimore Eats.

READ more from Yelp about Baltimore as a destination for food lovers

On the Hill Cafe, just steps away from MICA's residence halls

In naming Baltimore one of America’s “Most Artistic Towns,” the travel giant Expedia stated, “With one of the top-rated art schools in the nation, world-renowned museums and galleries, emerging underground scenes, and a packed calendar of events, this harbor city is piquing a lot of interest as one of the top art towns in America.”

Expedia also took note of MICA’s tenets, naming them “an impressive vision for an art-shaped future.”

READ about Baltimore in Expedia’s “Most Artistic Towns”

Named one of the “10 Coolest Cities to Visit” by Forbes, Baltimore was singled out for its “burgeoning arts scene.” In addition, the city was hailed as the home of MICA alumni Amy Sherald ’04 (LeRoy E. Hoffberger School of Painting M.F.A.), who recently received worldwide attention when her portrait of former First Lady Michelle Obama was unveiled at the National Portrait Gallery.

READ Forbes’ “10 Coolest Cities to Visit”

Baltimore was also ranked 15 on The New York Times’ “52 Places to Go.” One of the top U.S. cities on a list that includes locations around the globe, Baltimore was selected for its “packed cultural calendar.” The newspaper drew specific attention to the annual Light City festival, which transforms Baltimore into a hub of art and innovation through large-scale light installations, music and social change conferences. And last year, six MICA alumni were among the artists from around the world who took part in the annual event.

Created by MICA faculty member Tim Scofield, the large-scale kinetic sculpture — a metal peacock named “Charlie” — has appeared at Light City for the past two years.

The New York Times recent “36 Hours in Baltimore” article highlighted arts organizations with significant MICA ties — including the Creative Alliance in East Baltimore — as well as Station North Arts, home to the College’s Fred Lazarus IV Center.

READ “52 Places to Go” and “36 Hours in Baltimore”

A giant pink flamingo sits among shops and restaurants on "The Avenue" in Baltimore's Hampden neighborhood.

A giant pink flamingo sits among shops and restaurants on “The Avenue” in Baltimore’s Hampden neighborhood.

Baltimore was also featured in a recent issue of Southwest: The Magazine, the in-flight publication of Southwest Airlines with a monthly reach of more than 5 million readers. Touting Baltimore as “the city you’re missing,” the article takes an in-depth look at Baltimore’s cultural scene and its people, including MICA alumnus Hilton Carter ’02 (G.F.A.), a filmmaker and fine artist who lives in the city’s Hampden neighborhood.

READ about Baltimore in Southwest: The Magazine