Pensacola Museum of Art

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Pensacola Museum of Art
Pensacola HD MOA01.jpg
Pensacola Museum of Art is located in Florida
Pensacola Museum of Art
Map of Florida
Established 1954
Location Pensacola, Florida
Coordinates 30°24′30″N 87°12′48″W / 30.40837°N 87.21335°W / 30.40837; -87.21335

The Pensacola Museum of Art is the only art museum in the city of Pensacola, Florida. It was founded in 1954 by a group of women from the American Association of University Women.


In 1954 a group of determined women combined their efforts to create an Art Center for the City of Pensacola. Members of the American Association of University Women (AAUW) wanted a place to ex¬hibit traveling shows, offer art classes for both children and adults, and provide meeting space for members of the community as well as having a forum for lectures, films and other cultural presentations. They joined forces with others in the community who shared this same vision and formed the Pensacola Art Association (PAA).

When the City of Pensacola decided to replace the 1906 Old City Jail in 1954, the Pensacola Art Association embraced the opportunity to transform the Spanish Revival structure from a site of punishment and humiliation to a center of enlightenment and beauty. The structure itself was perfect for an arts center because the jail was already fireproof, secure and centrally located in Pensacola’s Historic Downtown District. When the City allowed the group to lease the old jail for $1 per year, the PAA’s Board members pulled together to turn the jail cells into exhibition spaces. Initially the City leased the building to the PAA, which became the Pensacola Museum of Art in 1982 and in 1988 the Museum purchased the building that is known to this day as the Pensacola Museum of Art (PMA).

Establishment of the Museum’s permanent collection began soon after incorporation in 1954. The collection contains 20th and 21st century works by artists such as Alexander Calder, Andy Warhol, Pablo Picasso, Leonard Baskin, Salvador Dalí, Thomas Hart Benton, Louis Comfort Tiffany and Käthe Kollwitz. Over the course of the past 54 years, the PMA has presented hundreds of exhibitions and thousands of educational opportunities, be¬coming the foundation for the visual arts in Pensacola.


The museum's permanent collections focus on 20th century, modern and contemporary art, including painting, sculpture and works on paper. The museum also features decorative arts collections of European and American glass and African tribal art.

Artists in the collection include John Marin, Salvador Dalí, Miriam Schapiro, Fairfield Porter, Hunt Slonem, Thomas Hart Benton, Alex Katz, Lynda Benglis, Milton Avery and Alexander Calder.

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