380 South Lamar Street
Jackson, MS 39201

(toll-free) 1.866.VIEWART

Museum Hours

Tuesday - Saturday

10 AM - 5 PM


noon - 5 PM

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About Us

Our mission: To engage Mississippians with visual art.

The move

The move from the Arts Center of Mississippi to the new facility in 2007 was small geographically, amounting to no more than a city block, yet it pushed the Museum light years ahead in terms of capabilities, technology, and the overall philosophy of what an art museum means to the community. The facility’s brilliant architectural makeover reflects the Museum’s mission to become a symbolic “museum without walls” – an inviting public space that offers relevant and meaningful cultural experiences to both the Jackson community and the state of Mississippi. The completed building represented Phase 1 of the decade-long plan to transform the Museum’s surroundings into a cohesive cultural district in Downtown Jackson.

The architecture

The architecture of the Museum is a tangible manifestation of a philosophical mission. For many years, the mission of MMA was “collecting, preserving and exhibiting art,” a typical museum mission statement. However, when the Board of Trustees of the Museum began to plan the building process for the new facility, the mission was changed to “engage Mississippians with visual art,” a statement that focuses on community interaction and personal experience. The architects, Glavé and Holmes in Richmond, Virginia, and Dale & Associates locally, applied this new philosophical mission to the architecture of the building, creating a sleek, open design for the once-rectangular building. The Museum lobby and entryway is filled with light through the use of a large amount of glass and by raising the roof of the entryway. Museum visitors plainly see not only the entrance to the Museum but other visitors inside the building, breaking down barriers and creating a transparent front door that makes everyone feel welcome. The vibrant Palette Café encourages visitors to sit and relax, and the patio and terrace create welcoming and comfortable spaces that compose the front porch of the downtown cultural district.


In Fall 2011, the Museum completed Phase 2 of the visionary plan, opening The Art Garden at the Mississippi Museum of Art, a 1.2 acre public green space complete with outdoor art installations, the sprawling BankPlus Green, a performance stage, and various spaces for visitors to engage with the arts in a variety of forms. Symbolically, The Art Garden breaks down barriers between the neighboring arts organizations and serves as a nexus that empowers creativity, expression, and synergy in the arts community. The Art Garden has, from the beginning, been a public-private partnership with the city of Jackson. Numerous private and individual donors, as well as state and federal agencies, contributed to and helped to realize the grand vision. Architect Madge Bemiss oversaw construction, and carried the torch passed by the late Ed Blake (1947-2010), whose imagination and forward thinking years before laid foundations for The Art Garden.

Ribbon cutting of The Art Garden (Fall 2011)

The Mississippi Museum of Art has been a community-supported institution for more than 100 years, and was at its former location since the late 1970s. The Museum boasts a seasoned staff of museum professionals and fiscally responsible administrators who have been managing operating budgets for over 30 years. These individuals have worked to ensure that the Museum’s renovations and upgrades are the best thing for the art and people of Mississippi. The Museum’s twenty-nine affiliate museums across the state will continue to benefit from the loan of artwork and traveling exhibitions, ensuring that even those Mississippians who cannot make the trip to Jackson can enjoy our rich cultural history. MMA continues to expand its programs and community outreach that are already in place.

In 2010, the Museum received the National Medal for Museum Service from the Institute of Museum of Library Services, a federal agency. The medal is the highest national honor awarded annually to five museums and five libraries. In 2010, the Mississippi Museum of Art was the only art museum to be recognized with this distinction. Support and recognition from local, regional, and federal arts organizations serve as reminders of the Museum’s successes and motivation for continued excellence and innovation. The Museum also plays a pivotal role in the revitalization of downtown Jackson. Situated between Thalia Mara Hall and the Jackson Convention Complex, the Museum and The Art Garden serve as the anchors of Jackson’s cultural district, and Downtown Jackson. Visitors to the Jackson Convention Complex will get a grand impression of Mississippi’s creative heritage. Meeting goers, as well as everyday downtowners, can adjourn to the Museum for particularly inspirational coffee and lunch breaks (it sets the stage for a remarkable rebirth of Downtown Jackson). Mississippi has always had an abundant supply of creative energy. The Mississippi Museum of Art strives to be a fountainhead attracting people from all walks to discuss the issues and glories of the past and present, while continuing to inspire progress in the future.

The Mississippi Museum of Art and its programs are sponsored in part by the city of Jackson and the Jackson Convention & Visitors Bureau. Support is also provided in part by funding from the Mississippi Arts Commission, a state agency, and in part by the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency.

To see the Museum’s most recent audited financial statement and tax return, please contact rpeeples@msmuseumart.org.

We invite you to peruse our current strategic plan, and hope you will visit soon and help us continue the mission.

Upcoming Events

'sipp Sourced with Chef Nick Wallace | "Eat Your Words"

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Lunch Thursday-Saturday, 11 AM-2 PM; Dinner Thursday, 5:30 PM-until

The Palette Café / Museum Kitchen

This month, dine in The Palette Café as Chef Nick Wallace presents a themed pop up menu inspired by Mississippi literary luminaries, in partnership with the Mississippi Book Festival. (The Museum-Kitchen Chef's Table is open first-come, first-served during dinner at Museum After Hours. Inquire upon arrival.) Each month, Executive Chef and Culinary Curator Nick Wallace of the Mississippi Museum of Art creates a three-day pop up menu highlighting product from Mississippi purveyors. These menus are...

Museum After Hours | “Homeward Bound”

Thursday, August 17, 2017

5:30 PM-until

Mississippi Museum of Art

The book binds us together. This month at Museum After Hours, we show our love for the printed page and stand at the storytelling crossroads of Mississippi visual art, literature, music, and film. Celebrate the opening of an exhibition of paintings by the late Mississippi artist Kate Freeman Clark and pick up your signed copy of “The Artist's Sketch: A Biography of Painter Kate Freeman Clark,” by author Carolyn J. Brown. At 6 PM in the...

Exhibit opening | Sunlight & Shadows: The Paintings of Kate Freeman Clark

Thursday, August 17, 2017

5:30 PM-until

The William B. and Isabel R. McCarty Foundation Gallery

In 1893, Kate Freeman Clark left her hometown of Holly Springs, Mississippi, and by the next year she had been accepted into the Art Students League of New York. There, she devoted herself to painting under the tutelage of renowned American Impressionist William Merritt Chase. Clark’s expansive body of work is still being studied, and appreciation for the collection has grown significantly in recent years. This exhibition brings together fifteen paintings borrowed from the Kate...

Workshop: Training the Citizen Artist

Thursday, August 17, 2017

6:30-8 PM

Yates Room

Part of Third Thursday programming. An experiential workshop in which attendees will participate in exercises to explore community, engagement, and transformation. Activities will include applications of the Theater of the Oppressed, a theatrical form developed to facilitate social and political change through action and dialogue. Instructed by Kate Woodley, registered drama therapist candidate and licensed master social worker.

Book signing | Carolyn J. Brown

Thursday, August 17, 2017

6:30-8 PM

In conjunction with the opening of the Sunlight and Shadows: The Paintings of Kate Freeman Clark exhibition (on view August 17-October 22, 2017 in The William B. and Isabel R. McCarty Foundation Gallery), author Carolyn J. Brown will sign copies of her new book, The Artist's Sketch: A Biography of Kate Freeman Clark. Copies of the book will be available for purchase in The Museum Store. At 6 PM, preceding the book signing, Brown will join in a...

"My Dog Skip" | Screen on the Green

Thursday, August 17, 2017

5:30 PM cash bar and concessions, movie at dusk

The Art Garden at the Mississippi Museum of Art

The Mississippi Museum of Art and the Crossroads Film Society present an outdoor film series on the BankPlus Green in The Art Garden. This month, we screen "My Dog Skip" in partnership with the Mississippi Book Festival. Part of Museum After Hours at Third Thursday. Cost: Free, cash bar