Art and tourism – a systematic review of the literature

Document Type


Source of Publication

Tourism Review

Publication Date



Purpose: The purpose of this study is to present a review of published academic work on art and tourism. A distinction between papers researching tourism and mentioning art just as one of tourism activities and papers covering “art tourism” specifically is proposed. Design/methodology/approach: The review is grounded on a content analysis of studies containing the words “art” and “tourism” published in the Scopus database. Moreover, to analyze papers specifically consisting of the term “art tourism” a theory‐context‐characteristics‐methods structure was used – the authors call these papers art–tourism-specific papers. Findings: While the number of “art and tourism” papers has been increasing in the past 40 years, little is known about “art tourism” as an independent form of tourism. This study finds limited work on art tourists’ characteristics, preferences and behaviors as costumers. No art-based research and little research with visual representations was found. Artists are very rarely participants of art tourism research. Research limitations/implications: Most research is conceptual, and little applied research can be identified. Importantly, besides synthesizing and critically assessing the current corpus of knowledge on art tourism, this review presents a final roadmap with directions for future research. One of the limitations of this review is that only studies included in the Scopus database and published in English were considered. Originality/value: To the best of the authors’ knowledge, this study provides the first comprehensive systematic review of published academic research on art and tourism in the past 40 years. The results of this study offer directions to future art tourism researchers.






Tourism and Travel


Art destination, Art tourism, Art-based research, Artists, Cultural tourism, Scopus

Scopus ID


Indexed in Scopus


Open Access