Seattle Art Museum


The Seattle Art Museum (SAM) is a world-class visual arts center established in 1933. The museumis very much a part of Seattle’s city landscape, thus making it a must-visit landmark for any artist, hobbyist, or even plain art lover. Its collection includes American, African, Asian, Ancient, and Australian Aboriginal arts, among others.


The Seattle Art Museum is composed of three facilities namely, the Seattle Art Museum, the Olympic Sculpture Parkand the Asian Art Museum in Volunteer Park Altogether, they comprise Seattle’s largest art museum to date. The main museum, which is the Seattle Art Museum, is located in downtown Seattle with its entrance situated between 1st Ave and Union Street. The Olympic Scupture Park, on the other hand, is on Western Ave at Capitol Hill. The third museum, which is also referred to as the Seattle Asian Art Museum, is in Volunteer Park. It can be accessed from the 14th Street at Central Seattle



Now regarded as the primary art museum in Seattle, the Seattle Art Museum was officially established in 1933. The museum traces its roots back to 1905 when the Seattle Fine Arts Society was first organized. Richard E. Fuller was the president of the said organization during the Great Depression.
During his reign, he and his mother Margaret donated funds amounting to $250,000 to build an art museum on Capitol Hill. That museum was eventually built and became of the first Seattle museums to be opened. The Art Deco structure in Volunteer Park was designed by Carl F. Gould. It officially opened as the Seattle Asian Art Museum on June 23, 1933.

Main Exhibitions

In 1954, a 25-piece European-inspired sculptures and paintings from the Samuel H. Kress Foundation were featured. Seven years later, all the pieces were donated to the art museum as permanent exhibits.

In 1959, the Seattle Art Museum was the first among all Seattle museums to feature a Van Gogh exhibit.
This particular exhibit drew 126,100 visitors.

In 1978, the Seattle Art Museum featured a traveling exhibit called the Treasures of Tutankhamun. This one attracted a total of 346,287 people.


Main Artists

One of the main artists of the Seattle Art Museum is Alexander Calder whose works include Eagle (1971) and Richard Serra, who is credited for Wake (2004). The other notable artists included in the Seattle Asian Art Museum roster are Cai Guo-Qiang, Lucas Cranach, Mark Tobey, Yeil X’eenh, Do-Ho Suh, and Kane Quaye. Additionally, there are several early Italian paintings on exhibit at the museum’s premises, whose artists include Dalmasio Scannabecchi, Giovanni di Paolo, Puccio di Simone, Bartolomeo Vivarini, and Luca Carlevaris, among others.

Main Artworks

The main artworks featured by the Seattle Art Museum include “Quieter Spirit” by Frederick Edwin Church, the Australian Aboriginal Art pieces from the Kaplan and Levi Collection and the “White Path between Two Rivers”, which is a painting from the 13th century.





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