Seattle Art Museum

Stimulating creative expression and engagement in downtown Seattle

Of all the cities in our corner of the world that offer breathtaking views of the mountains and waterways from the heart of downtown, Seattle is one of our favorites. The Emerald City delivers a perfect blend of natural beauty and world-class cultural amenities all in one urban center. With this in mind, it should come as no surprise that Seattle is home to one of the premier art institutions in the country – the Seattle Art Museum.

The Seattle Art Museum (often abbreviated as SAM) is located downtown near the waterfront, just steps away from the best of what the city has to offer. From the fresh, local seafood and scenic ferry rides to historic theatres and iconic Pike Place Market, Seattle is one of the most dynamic cities not only in the Pacific Northwest – but in all of the U.S. As you stroll amongst the skyscrapers and take in the sights from the piers along the waterfront, make it a point to stop at SAM to experience Seattle like you’ve never seen it before.

Here’s a peek at what you can expect.


The Seattle Art Museum has presented a number of notable exhibitions since it’s opening in 1933. In 1954, SAM displayed 25 European paintings and sculptures from the Samuel H. Kress Foundation, which were donated to the museum in 1961. A few years later in 1959, a Van Gogh exhibit drew 126,100 visitors. Today, the Seattle Art Museum hosts a variety of exhibitions including “Disguise: Masks & Global African Art,” “Calligraphic Abstraction,” “Conceal/Reveal: Making Meaning in Chinese Art,” and more.


The Seattle Art Museum houses an impressive and eclectic collection of modern and ethnic art. It’s probably best known for its collection of art specific to Seattle and the Pacific Northwest – especially its Native American pieces. Also popular amongst art enthusiasts is the museum’s substantial collection of Australian Aboriginal art.


“In addition to its thrilling rotation of exhibitions and growing collection of art, the Seattle Art Museum also hosts a variety of programs that stimulate dialogue, creative expression, and active engagement in the downtown Seattle community. In particular, Summer at SAM presents an entire season packed full of free concerts, activities with local artists, and outdoor yoga. These programs are open to the public and fun for all ages. The Seattle Art Museum also presents year-round programs that cater to schools and educators, families, and teens. For a complete list of ongoing and future programs at the Seattle Art Museum, click [here].”

   Ready to plan your visit?

It’s worth mentioning that the Seattle Art Museum actually maintains three major facilities. The main museum is downtown, the Seattle Asian Art Museum (SAAM) is located in Volunteer Park on Capitol Hill, and the Olympic Sculpture Park is situated on the central Seattle waterfront.

Photography: iStock/Chris Boswell

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Kate Kasbee
Kate Kasbee is a blogger and freelance copywriter living in Los Angeles. She has a background in real estate marketing and has also written about a variety of subjects including pet care, how to adopt a vegan diet, and technology. Prior to living in sunny California, Kate spent eight years in Chicago where she lived in nine different apartments in five different neighborhoods. Though she’s not quite done exploring, Kate dreams of planting her roots and owning a home with creaky floors and plenty of land for starting an organic farm.
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