The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (MFAH) is one of the world's leading art museums. It is home to more than 63,000 works of art, ranging from ancient Egyptian sculpture to French Impressionist paintings. This cultural complex embodies the spirit of Houston. There is a wealth of opportunities for visitors, including an award-winning museum school, two art schools, a library, a movie theater, a visitor center, and a sculpture garden. MFAH offers a variety of free and discounted experiences. The Museum Of Fine Arts Houston
Founded in 1900, the MFAH is a member of the American Federation of Arts and the American Association of Museums. In its nearly 100-year history, the institution has been fueled by private and corporate donations. The collections reflect human diversity and include Latino and Latin American art, as well as contemporary and classical European, Asian, and American art. Since 2000, the MFAH has hosted several groundbreaking special exhibitions.
A major force in the development of the MFAH was Ruth Pershing Uhler. She served as the institution's executive director from 1937 until 1967. Other influential individuals included James Chillman, Jr., and Dominique de Menil.
After its founding, the MFAH became a center of public art activity. As part of the community, the organization sponsored local and regional exhibits. They also organized annual circuit shows. One example of the organization's local activities was the Houston Artists Annual Exhibition. Another was the Junior League Docent program.
Following World War II, the Houston Art League changed its name to the Museum of Fine Arts of Houston. Its first collection consisted of oil paintings. During its early years, the MFAH received donations from prominent Houston families. By 1970, the permanent collection counted approximately 12,000 objects. Some of these works were from the collections of George M. Dickson and Belle Dickson, who donated 25 paintings in 1919.
Following the Armistice, the MFAH's efforts to raise funds for the construction of the main building were resuming. In addition to the foundation's financial assistance, the MFAH benefited from the Samuel H. Kress Foundation's donation.
While the museum was primarily located on the main campus, there were additional locations throughout the city. Among these were the Lillie and Hugh Roy Cullen Sculpture Garden, which was designed by California sculptor and designer Isamu Noguchi. Also on the campus is the Bayou Bend Collection and Gardens, which houses a large collection of decorative arts. Located in the River Oaks neighborhood, Bayou Bend is connected to the Glassell School of Art by a 14-acre garden.
The main campus also includes the Lillie and Hugh Roy Cullen Building and the Audrey Jones Beck Building. These buildings house the museum's encyclopedic permanent collection of European and American art. Many of the works are on display in the galleries. The building's interior includes several galleries dedicated to changing exhibitions.
The MFAH has two significant libraries. One is the Museum Library, which features an archive of the museum's history. The other is the Public Archives, which holds the museum's public archives.