The Mississippi Museum of Art began as the Mississippi Art Association, established in 1911 with a small collection of paintings. Since becoming the Mississippi Museum of Art in 1978, the collection has grown to over 5,500 objects, with particular strength in American art from the 19th and 20th centuries by some of the country’s most prominent artists including Robert Henri, Georgia O’Keeffe, Andy Warhol, and Radcliffe Bailey. Many bequests and gifts have added strength and diversity to the collection such as those of Sara Virginia Jones, who left more than 300 prints of 16th-20th century origin, and of Oxford collectors Paul and Celia Mabry, who have given works by American Modernists such as Arthur B. Davies, John Marin, George Bellows, and Romare Bearden.
The Museum’s principal suite of galleries is devoted to a presentation of its permanent collection called The Mississippi Story, a thematic exhibition—always free to the public—that encompasses Mississippi artists of all stripes from the first native-born professional artist James Tooley, Jr. through G. Ruger Donoho, Marie Hull, Eudora Welty, William J. Hollingsworth, Jr., John McCrady, Andrew Bucci, Sam Gilliam, and Randy Hayes. The McCarty Foundation Gallery—known as the Icons Gallery—provides a forum for changing exhibitions from the permanent collection, ranging from Renaissance and Baroque prints to contemporary art. Selections of Pre-Columbian ceramics assembled by Sam Olden, of Yazoo City, are on view in custom-designed cases in the Corridor.
To browse through the Museum’s permanent collection database, please click below. More objects and images will be added on a regular basis as our collection grows and more objects are digitized.