380 South Lamar Street
Jackson, MS 39201

601.960.1515
(toll-free) 1.866.VIEWART

Museum Hours

Tuesday - Saturday

10 AM - 5 PM

Sunday

noon - 5 PM


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Our Story

1911: The Mississippi Art Association

The Mississippi Art Association, forerunner of the Mississippi Museum of Art, came into existence at 2:30 p.m. on Friday, October 27, 1911. The State Fair Association had requested artist Bessie Cary Lemly of the Belhaven College faculty, and founder of Jackson’s Art Study Club in 1903, to organize an exhibition of local art for the State Fair. The artists who participated in the 1911 State Fair were so enthusiastic about the outcome that they quickly organized the Mississippi Art Association (MAA), which allowed them to exhibit artwork regularly for public viewing. Members of the MAA included artists and supporters of the arts, all of whom were originally members of the Art Study Club. The sole purpose of the MAA, at first, was to hold exhibitions at the state fair. Later, shows were held in any available space: the YWCA, the City Auditorium, the Public Library, and the Governor’s Mansion, among others. Aileen Phillips Shannon, the artist who first taught Marie Atkinson Hull, followed Bessie Lemly as president, and in l916 Marie Hull was elected to the position. During these early years, the MAA and Art Study Club lobbied the Mississippi legislature to introduce art classes to the public schools. Success came when Central High School of Jackson became the first public school in the state with an art education program and Mississippi State College for Women (later Mississippi University for Women) became the first college to add art to its curriculum. The MAA established a permanent art collection in 1911. Taking Marie Hull’s suggestion, members initiated the purchase award system for the annual state fair exhibition. Bettie McArthur, head of Mississippi University for Women’s art department, won the first purchase award for her painting The Poplars of St. Legare. It became one of the first additions to the collection. In 1926 the organization was incorporated and a charter secured, signed by Bessie Cary Lemly, Mrs. R. L. Hogue, and Martha Enochs. This step was inspired when the Gale family home at 839 North State Street (now called the Municipal Art Gallery) was presented to the city of Jackson. Although the MAA shared the house as a meeting place for various clubs, they were able to house the art collection there and in their offices as well. For the next fifty years, the MAA became increasingly active. An annual watercolor exhibition was established in l931, complementing the annual oil exhibition. In the late 1930s Eudora Welty held a photographic exhibition there. Karl Wolfe, who was MAA president from 1940 to 1942, and William Hollingsworth worked on attracting nationally known artists to the juried exhibitions. In 1949 the first employee was hired: a woman who lived in the gallery, performed light housekeeping chores, and cared for the permanent collection. In l951 the MAA re-filed for a charter of incorporation, having failed to file the required papers in due fashion. Joshua Green, attorney for the MAA, wrote the new charter.

1911: First permanent art collection

Increasing activity through juried exhibitions

Over the years, the organization added children’s art, collegiate work, and Allison’s Art Colony (a group that met several times a year from 1948 to 1963 at a spa in Madison County called Allison’s Wells) to their exhibition agenda. Children’s art classes, teacher-training workshops, scholarships for training, newsletters, contact with the state school system, and workshops sponsored at Allison’s Wells furthered the MAA’s commitment to their original purpose: “to raise the standard of appreciation among laymen, and to stimulate the production of the highest type of work from artists.” As the 1955 term president, Mrs. Morgan Jones made the first effort to secure an art museum for Jackson. She stated that it would be her main objective to work toward the realization of a full-fledged art institution. Subsequent officers also tried to meet that goal. As early as 1958 the MAA petitioned Jackson’s city planning board to include an art gallery in the proposed new civic center. For the next twenty years the MAA worked toward constructing a museum building. A monumental effort of outreach, fund-raising, and consciousness-raising went into the effort. To assist in this endeavor, The Gallery Guild, Inc., was formed in 1965. In 1967 the MAA’s first professional director, Louis Sedberry, was hired and occupied offices in the Municipal Art Gallery. Following Sedberry’s directorship were Lowell Adams, John Craib-Cox, Michael Ogden, and Dan Matusiewicz as interim director. The Museum began to take definite form when the city announced that a cultural and educational complex would be built adjacent to the Jackson Municipal Auditorium. Tom Biggs of Jackson was selected as the architect. Jim Czarniecki was appointed first director of the new Mississippi Museum of Art, which would be housed in the complex. Dedication ceremonies for the new building were held on April 22, 1978, followed by two weeks of celebratory programming. When only national and international exhibitions were announced, the state’s art community voiced its disappointment. Many felt that the Museum was made possible in large part because of the support of Mississippi artists; the Museum seemed to have deserted them. In response, in December l978 the Museum created the short-lived Mississippi Gallery. The Mississippi Art Association’s charter of incorporation was amended and the legal entity officially became the Mississippi Museum of Art on November 29, 1979.

Beginning the effort for an art museum

Opening the Museum

Since its opening, the Mississippi Museum of Art has implemented many projects that include The Palette, a café that first opened in 1980; the Open Gallery (1983) that featured avant-garde work; the Impressions Gallery for children (1987-1997); satellite museums, introduced in 1989 (now the Museum’s Affiliate Network of more than twenty-five locations around the state), the T. M. Hederman Memorial Endowment for Exhibitions (1986); and The Annie Laurie Swaim Hearin Memorial Exhibition Series (1992). After President Jim Czarniecki’s resignation in 1983, Thad McLaurin and Marilyn Harris served as interim directors until Norman McCrummen III was appointed in 1984. His four-month tenure was followed by Alexander L. Nyerges, 1985-1992; Linda S. Sullivan, 1992-1995; Bill Loveless as interim director; Andrew Maass, 1996-2001; Jane Hiatt as interim director; and the Museum’s current director Betsy Bradley, who began her tenure in December 2001. In addition to a dizzying schedule of changing exhibitions, the Museum offers year-round educational programs for both children and adults and hosts The Scholastic Art Awards Mississippi Regional Competition as well as the biennial Mississippi Invitational. Adults can enjoy monthly programs such as “Unburied Treasures,” which features art, music, and literature and “Jazz, Art & Friends,” which celebrates the merging of artistic disciplines. The Museum also offers entertaining and educational programs associated with current exhibitions and audio tours of select exhibitions. Innovative educational areas are the “Closer Look Gallery” and its smaller counterpart, the “Family Corners.” These spaces, located within the exhibitions themselves, offer visitors of all ages space to reflect on artwork and subjects found within the exhibitions. With its many programs, diverse exhibitions, and rapidly expanding permanent collection, the Museum outgrew its first permanent home at the Mississippi Arts Center. Planning for the current facility began in 2002, and in June 2007 the plans came to fruition with the opening of the new Museum in the former Mississippi Arts Pavilion. The non-profit organization raised several million dollars from the community to fully fund renovations to the Arts Pavilion building and to support an endowment for its operation—a testament to the community’s dedication to the Mississippi Museum of Art.

The modern Museum

A second phase of the original expansion plans called for the construction of The Art Garden at the Mississippi Museum of Art. In 2010, Museum officials mounted a new campaign to fund a 1.2 acre park that would serve as the Museum’s “front yard.” Opening in late September of 2011, The Art Garden unifies an arts district that includes several of the city’s foremost cultural organizations. Like the Museum itself, The Art Garden is designed to be an inviting space in which everyone can engage comfortably with art.

Upcoming Events

Young Artists: Mixed Media

Monday, July 15, 2019 - Friday, July 19

9 AM - 4 PM

BancorpSouth Classroom

Ages: 7-10 Teacher: Justin Ransburg Cost: $250 (Members: $212.50) REGISTER HERE From printmaking to drawing to painting and more, this week’s campers will explore different ways to create 2D works of art and produce their own unique projects, while finding inspiration in artworks on view in the Museum. On the last day of class, we will showcase our work for parents and caretakers and have a celebration at the Museum’s splash pad. And remember to always bring your imagination and DRESS FOR MESS! • All materials are covered in the cost of registration. Museum members receive 15% off! • For half-day classes (9 AM-noon), please pack a snack. For full-day classes (9 AM-4 PM), please pack snacks and a lunch. • The application process for need-based scholarships will open in mid-April. • Volunteer openings are available. APPLY HEREQuestions? Contact McKenzie Drake, William R. Hollingsworth Fellow at mdrake@msmuseumart.org or 601.965.9912

Creative Healing Studio

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

12:30-1:30 PM

BancorpSouth Classroom

Creative Healing Studio is a bi-monthly art therapy gathering for adults being treated for cancer or those with a cancer diagnosis in their past led by licensed art therapist Susan Anand. Open to all skill levels, this event is free and open to the public, but registration is required. To register, contact Susan Anand at smainlay@aol.com.

Museum After Hours | Birds of a Feather

Thursday, July 18, 2019

5:30-10 PM

Every third Thursday, the Museum opens its doors after hours to partner with and embrace Mississippi's creative community. This month, the Museum is readying the Trustmark Grand Hall for the opening of the exhibition Pappy Kitchens and the Saga of Red Eye the Rooster on Saturday, July 20. Our after-hours pop-up exhibition celebrates a bird of a different flock with DUCKrageous, an eye-boggling showcase of graphic artist Dan Magee's extreme rubber duck collection with photos by Allen Cotton. Also on view will be works created by all of our Museum School campers! We'll have art-making and live music in The Art Garden, along with food trucks for the famished. Got kids? We've got just the spot for them to hang out with books, games, bean bags, and more! SCHEDULE 5:30-8 PM: Pop-up exhibition | DUCKrageous & The Museum School End-of-Camp Showcase 5:30-7:30 PM: Art Lab | Let's decorate some ducks! 6:30-8 PM: Face-painting by Tawny Minton 6:30-7:30 PM: Live music feat. TB Ledford & the Accumulators Until 8 PM: The Museum Store and Galleries are open late FOOD & DRINK Cash bar* and food available for purchase from Family First Concessions, JB & Sons, and Kups and Kones food trucks. This family-friendly event is free and open to the public. *Free drink ticket for members and those who sign up during Museum After Hours. Museum After Hours music is generously sponsored by the Greater Jackson Arts Council through their Music First program, with funding from Visit Jackson.

Look and Learn with Hoot

Friday, July 19, 2019

10:30 AM to 11:30 AM

The Museum Foyer & BancorpSouth Classroom

Look and Learn with Hoot is an educational opportunity for children up to 5 years of age and their parents that emphasizes creative play and literacy through a hands-on art activity and story time. (Hoot, a friendly owl, is the Museum’s education mascot.) Please dress for mess!

Young Artists: Arts & Movement

Monday, July 22, 2019 - Friday, July 26

9 AM - 4 PM

BancorpSouth Classroom

Ages: 7-10 Teacher: Samantha King Costs: $250 (Members: $212.50) REGISTER HERE Campers will learn new techniques in 2D and 3D media (ceramic, painting, drawing, paper, and more) and get moving during this week’s camp. Through studying works on view in the exhibition Black Out: Silhouettes Then and Now and our Mississippi Invitational exhibition, students will learn new ways to use art and movement to express emotions and tell stories. On the last day of class, we will showcase our work for parents and caretakers and have a celebration at the Museum’s splash pad. And remember to always bring your imagination and DRESS FOR MESS! • All materials are covered in the cost of registration. Museum members receive 15% off! • For half-day classes (9 AM-noon), please pack a snack. For full-day classes (9 AM-4 PM), please pack snacks and a lunch. • The application process for need-based scholarships will open in mid-April. • Volunteer openings are available. APPLY HEREQuestions? Contact McKenzie Drake, William R. Hollingsworth Fellow at mdrake@msmuseumart.org or 601.965.9912

Mini Matisse: Meet the Materials

Monday, July 22, 2019 - Friday, July 26

9 AM - noon

Entergy Classroom

Ages: 3-4 (parent or caregiver must be present) Teacher: McKenzie Drake Cost: $75 (Members: $63.75 Dates: July 22, 23, 25, 26 (NOTE: There is no class on July 24) REGISTER HERE Introduce your budding artist to the Museum and all the materials that help artists to create! In each class, we will focus on a different material used in artworks on view in the exhibition Black Out: Silhouettes Then and Now and the Mississippi Invitational exhibition and engage the children AND their caregivers in gallery activities, hands-on art projects, art games, and books. We will use an array of sensory media, as well as air-dry clay, washable paint, paper, pencil, crayons, glue, and more. On the last day of class, we will showcase our work for parents and caretakers and have a celebration at the Museum’s splash pad. And remember to always bring your imagination and DRESS FOR MESS! • All materials are covered in the cost of registration. Museum members receive 15% off! • For half-day classes (9 AM-noon), please pack a snack. For full-day classes (9 AM-4 PM), please pack snacks and a lunch. • The application process for need-based scholarships will open in mid-April. • Volunteer openings are available. APPLY HEREQuestions? Contact McKenzie Drake, William R. Hollingsworth Fellow at mdrake@msmuseumart.org or 601.965.9912

Art in Mind I

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

10:30 AM-noon

BancorpSouth Classroom

Art in Mind uses art exploration in the galleries, followed by hands-on engagement in the studio to stimulate observation, recall, and cognition. Art therapist Susan Anand joins William R. Hollingsworth Fellow McKenzie Drake in creating fun and comfortable experiences for participants of all skill levels. This event is free and open to the public, but registration is required. To register, contact Jennifer Knight at 601.496.MIND (option 2) or mindclinic@umc.edu. Presented in partnership with Alzheimer’s Mississippi and AARP Mississippi, and generously sponsored by The Mind Center at UMMC

Art in Mind II

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

1-2:30 PM

BancorpSouth Classroom

Art in Mind uses art exploration in the galleries, followed by hands-on engagement in the studio to stimulate observation, recall, and cognition. Art therapist Susan Anand joins William R. Hollingsworth Fellow McKenzie Drake in creating fun and comfortable experiences for participants of all skill levels. This event is free and open to the public, but registration is required. To register, contact Jennifer Knight at 601.496.MIND (option 2) or mindclinic@umc.edu. Presented in partnership with Alzheimer’s Mississippi and AARP Mississippi, and generously sponsored by The Mind Center at UMMC

Gallery Talk | Betsy Bradley

Friday, July 26, 2019

11:30 AM

In the Galleries

Gallery talks offer visitors the chance to engage with a single work, or pairing of works, for a 30-minute talk led by Museum curators and educators, as well as local artists and scholars. While leading this walk through the galleries of Black Out: Silhouettes Then and Now, Mississippi Museum of Art Director Betsy Bradley will discuss the Museum's plans for the upcoming exhibition year and the future. This event is free and open to the public.

Studio Session II: Ceramics & Mixed Media

Monday, July 29, 2019 - Friday, August 2

1 - 4 PM

Entergy Classroom

Ages: 14-17 Teacher: McKenzie Drake Cost: $175 (Members: $148.75) REGISTER HERE From small- to large-scale projects, this afternoon class will challenge students to work in a variety of scales using 3D media. Inspired by artworks on view in the Museum, students will work independently and experiment with new materials and processes of making art. On the last day of class, Isabel Gray, the Museum’s James and Madeleine McMullan Director of School and Academic Programs, will review with students the application process for the annual Scholastic Arts and Writing Awards – Mississippi Regional Competition. On the last day of class, we will showcase our work for parents and caretakers and have a celebration at the Museum’s splash pad. And remember to always bring your imagination and DRESS FOR MESS! • All materials are covered in the cost of registration. Museum members receive 15% off! • For half-day classes (9 AM-noon), please pack a snack. For full-day classes (9 AM-4 PM), please pack snacks and a lunch. • The application process for need-based scholarships will open in mid-April. • Volunteer openings are available. APPLY HEREQuestions? Contact McKenzie Drake, William R. Hollingsworth Fellow at mdrake@msmuseumart.org or 601.965.9912

Art & Coffee

Saturday, August 3, 2019

10 - 11:30 AM

The Museum Foyer, Galleries

Art and Coffee is an opportunity to slow down with fellow art lovers in a casual morning learning space. This event is free and open to the public. Coffee is served. This month, Aylen Mercado shares her experience this summer as the Museum’s first CAPE intern and discusses her research into the pre-Columbian artworks in the Museum’s permanent collection while reflecting on Andean cultures, past and present, and the legacy of coloniality. Generously sponsored by Gibbs Travis PLLC The Center for Art & Public Exchange (CAPE) and its programs are supported by its founding partners: W.K. Kellogg Foundation, Henry Luce Foundation, Southern Poverty Law Center, and Bradley Arant.

Guided Tour of Exhibitions on View

Sunday, August 4, 2019

11 AM - noon

Begins in the Museum Foyer

Music in the City

Tuesday, August 6, 2019

5:15 PM cash bar; 5:45 PM program

Trustmark Grand Hall

Music in the City is a monthly series presenting live performances of classical and traditional artists. This month, the Diamond Piano Trio performs. This event is free and open to the public. Generously sponsored by St. Andrew’s Episcopal Cathedral

Art in Mind II

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

1-2:30 PM

BancorpSouth Classroom

Art in Mind uses art exploration in the galleries, followed by hands-on engagement in the studio to stimulate observation, recall, and cognition. Art therapist Susan Anand joins William R. Hollingsworth Fellow McKenzie Drake in creating fun and comfortable experiences for participants of all skill levels. This event is free and open to the public, but registration is required. To register, contact Jennifer Knight at 601.496.MIND (option 2) or mindclinic@umc.edu. Presented in partnership with Alzheimer’s Mississippi and AARP Mississippi, and generously sponsored by The Mind Center at UMMC

Art in Mind I

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

10:30 AM-noon

BancorpSouth Classroom

Art in Mind uses art exploration in the galleries, followed by hands-on engagement in the studio to stimulate observation, recall, and cognition. Art therapist Susan Anand joins William R. Hollingsworth Fellow McKenzie Drake in creating fun and comfortable experiences for participants of all skill levels. This event is free and open to the public, but registration is required. To register, contact Jennifer Knight at 601.496.MIND (option 2) or mindclinic@umc.edu. Presented in partnership with Alzheimer’s Mississippi and AARP Mississippi, and generously sponsored by The Mind Center at UMMC

Creative Healing Studio

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

12:30 PM to 2:00 PM

BancorpSouth Classroom

Creative Healing Studio is a bi-monthly art therapy gathering for adults being treated for cancer or those with a cancer diagnosis in their past led by licensed art therapist Susan Anand. Open to all skill levels, this event is free and open to the public, but registration is required. To register, contact Susan Anand at smainlay@aol.com.

New Symphony of Time Opening Day

Saturday, September 7, 2019

11 AM - 5 PM

Museum Foyer, Galleries of New Symphony of Time

New Symphony of Time expands the boundaries of Mississippi’s identity, casting light on a shared past to help reflect an expansive, more inclusive future. To imagine a new way of engaging with art about Mississippi, phrases from Margaret Walker’s heroic poem “This Is My Century: Black Synthesis of Time” organize the exhibition into thematic areas that call forth ancestral wisdom, the strength of sheer survival, and the power of imagination to create a more harmonious world. Opening Day Schedule 10-11:30 AM – CAPE Art & Coffee 11 AM-4 PM – Opening Day Art Lab 11:30 AM & 1:30 PM – Literary Readings 11:45 AM – Exhibition Tour with Chief Curator Dr. Roger Ward 12:45 PM – Exhibition Tour with Curator of American Art Elizabeth Abston 1:45 PM – Exhibition Tour with William R. Hollingsworth Fellow McKenzie Drake 2:30 PM – Panel Discussion 4 PM – Opening Day Happy Hour This event is free and open to the public. This exhibition has been made possible in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities: Exploring the human endeavor. Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this exhibition, do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Additional support is provided by the State of Mississippi, Mississippi Department of Archives & History, Trustmark Bank, and Visit Mississippi.