Seattle Art Museum

Chinese roof tile, Ming period (1368-1644). Image and original data provided by the Seattle Art Museum.

The Seattle Art Museum (SAM) has contributed nearly 5000 images of its diverse permanent collection to the Artstor Digital Library. The selection in Artstor ranges widely across the curatorial departments of the museum that extend from the Ancient Mediterranean, through historic Asian, African, American and European collections up to international contemporary art, and across many media.
 
From a  collection of nearly 25,000 objects, the museum offers a selection of fine European paintings and decorative arts, as well as a robust representation of American art through to contemporary times.  It is notable for its comprehensive range of Asian art — Chinese, Japanese, Korean as well as Himalayan, Indian, and Southeastern, as well as African art.  Further, the museum is distinctive for its indigenous collections from North America and Austrlia. The riches of the permanent collection are supplemented by a varied program of visting and community-related exhibitions.
 
The Seattle Art Museum opened in 1933 and generated outstanding attendance through its inaugural year. Its first home was built in Volunteer Park, according to the Art Deco designs of Carl Gould (since 1994, this building has housed the Asian Art Museum, a part of the SAM, but on separate premises). From the beginning, the museum featured Asian art and highlit the work of Northwestern artists - collecting areas that remain integral to its mission. In 1991, the museum opened in a new building in downtown Seattle designed by Robert Venturi. In 2007, the Olympic Sculpture Park, featuring modern and contemporary work, expanded the campus from the two main buildings at Volunteer Park and downtown, to the shore of Puget Sound . The same year, SAM unveiled an expansion of the principal Venturi building designed by Brad Cloepfil of Allied Works Architecture, which doubled the museum’s public and exhibition space.