The museum changes its displays regularly. The exhibitions in the museum are mainly of paintings, calligraphy and sculpture from Hong Kong, China and other parts of the world. It has cooperated with other museums as well.
The museum was established as the City Hall Museum and Art Gallery in the City Hall in Central by the Urban Council in 1962. This was split into the Hong Kong Museum of History and the Hong Kong Museum of Art in July 1975. The Museum of History moved to Kowloon Park in 1983. Before leaving City Hall in 1991, the art museum occupied the 8th (rear portion), 9th, 10th, and 11th storeys of the High Block. These floors now house a public library.