The Museum Ludwig, opened in 1976 with a gift of some 350 pieces from the Wallraf-Richartz Museum, which is housed in the same building. While the Wallraf-Richartz exhibited some modern art, the Ludwig was the first museum in Cologne dedicated to contemporary art. Its collection includes pieces by Warhol, Lichtenstein and the largest collection of works by Picasso in the world, many of which were donated or given on personal loan from Pop-Art collectors Peter and Irene Ludwig.
The museum's unique architecture is a series of rounded roofs, giving one the impression of a series of steel waves. It is situated in between the Gothic bombast of the Cathedral of Cologne and the Rhine River, and its elegant, modern design is a stunning contrast to the looming imposition of the Cathedral, even more so given the purposes of both institutions.
Also emerging from the Wallraf-Richartz museum is the Romano-Germanic Museum. now housed in a building east of the Ludwig. This collection of antiquities leads visitors on a journey into the city's Roman heritage, displaying stone, clay and bronze statuary, mosaic fragments and even remnants of architecture.
There are passes available that get you into the museums at discounted rates. These discounts vary, but generally, one can go to 2 museums in 2 consecutive days, as well as get free bus passage on the first day.