The Smart Museum of Art at the University of Chicago is a site for rigorous inquiry and exchange that encourages the examination of complex issues through the lens of art objects and artistic practice. Through strong community and scholarly partnerships, the Museum incorporates diverse ideas, identities, and experiences into its exhibitions and collections, academic inquiry, and public programming. The Smart first opened in 1974.

Always free

Thanks to the support of our Smart Partners, admission to the Smart Museum of Art is always free and open to all. 

Mission statement

The Smart Museum of Art at the University of Chicago opens the world through art and ideas.


General support for the Smart Museum’s programs and operations in 2019–2020 is provided in part by the Smart Family Foundation, the Museum’s SmartPartners, The University of Chicago, Terra Foundation for American Art and The Richard Driehaus Foundation, Janis Kanter and Thomas McCormick Endowment, the Illinois Arts Council Agency, Harper Court Arts Council, the Amy Gold and Brett Gorvy Student Work Fund, Eloise W. Martin Fund, Brooks McCormick, Jr. Japanese Print Collection Care Endowment, J & S Freehling Arts Fund, Estate of Miriam Graham, Estate of Lester and Betty Guttman, and The Estate of Gerald Ratner.

Illinois Arts Council Agency