Akron’s art museum first opened its doors to the public as the Akron Art Institute on February 1, 1922 in two borrowed rooms in the basement of the Akron public library. Since then, it has transformed into a large facility whose collection spans three centuries. AAI became the Akron Art Museum in October 1980, and shifted its focus to acquisitions and establishing a permanent collection.
The museum’s focus on collecting and exhibiting art produced from 1850 through today remains unique in the region. With 12,000 square feet of gallery space dedicated to the display of its collection, the museum includes outstanding examples of early 20th Century realism and American impressionism along with later century postmodern painting and sculpture, photorealism, and Pop Art.
The collection includes pieces like Chuck Close’s Linda and Andy Warhol’s silkscreen painting Elvis. A separate room in the Haslinger Family Galleries is devoted to the first work of installation art to enter the museum’s collection – Atrabiliairios (Defiant), by Colombian sculptor Doris Salcedo. Works on paper and photographs in the collection galleries are changed every six months, and selections from the painting and sculpture on view are rotated on a regular basis as well. (KCE)
Akron Art Museum Information
- Public Transportation: Good (steps from METRO RTA buses 5, x61, and 102 at High Street/East Market Street; a short walk from bus 6 at Broadway Street/East Market Street and buses 1, 10, and 28 at East Market Street/Main Street; and a 3-minute walk from bus 19 at East Mill Street/High Street)
- Handicapped Accessibility: Good
- Hours: Wednesday–Sunday 11 a.m.–5 p.m. (open Thursdays until 9 p.m.). Closed Monday, Tuesday, and most major holidays
- Admission: Adult $7; Students/Seniors $5; Children (12 and under) and Members Free. Sunday Sampler: On the first Sunday of every month, admission is Free
- Tour: Free with admission and available most Saturdays and Sundays at 2 p.m. Museum docents lead these free “Five Favorites” tours during which they share their current personal favorites on view in the museum’s galleries. Call ahead to confirm. No tours available on Sunday Sampler days. Private group tours are available during regular Museum hours (last tour starts at 3:30 p.m.) for groups of 8–50. Groups of 15 or more receive discounted admission for $6 each. Private tours must be requested at least 3 weeks in advance
- Membership: Individual ($50); Dual/Household ($65); Contributor ($100); Sponsor ($250); Sustainer ($500); Director’s Circle ($1,000–$10,000). Membership benefits include free admission; free parking in the museum’s South High Street parking lot; free admission to exhibition opening parties; free subscription to quarterly members’ magazine; Members only events and travel opportunities including day trips and weekend art getaways; discounts on events, workshops, lectures and programs; and discounts in the Museum Store
- Other Benefits: Reciprocal membership to other museums is available at the Contributor Level ($100).