The Collection
Exhibit in the permanent collection gallery

WAM’s collection contains approximately 30,000 works of art in a variety of media, including painting, sculpture, prints, photography, ceramics, and video. Key collection areas are listed below.

American Art

WAM’s permanent collection features a prominent holding (approximately 20,000 works) of art of the United States, including an internationally significant collection from the first half of the twentieth century, featuring the world’s largest holdings of works by Marsden Hartley, Alfred H. Maurer, and B.J.O. Nordfeldt.  


WAM holds a particularly rich collection of ceramics featuring approximately 2,000 objects from a range of eras, geographic locations, cultures, and styles, including a significant collection of Upper Midwest studio pottery.

Korean Furniture and Decorative Objects

The variety and breadth of the museum’s collection of traditional Korean furniture is unmatched in the United States, and is perhaps unrivaled outside Asia. The collection includes about 200 examples of Choson dynasty (1392–1910) furniture, 80 Silla dynasty (668–935 B.C.) stoneware pieces, some 150 folk paintings, wooden bowls and utensils, and other folk arts and crafts. The majority of the collection came to Weisman Art Museum as a bequest from Dr. Edward Reynolds Wright Jr. in 1988.  From that time, the Weisman has built on the collection, including work by modern and contemporary Korean artists. Read more

Art on Paper

Works on paper, including drawings, watercolors, prints, and photographs, constitute approximately two-thirds of WAM’s collection. The Edith Carlson Gallery was designed specifically to better and more safely display these light-sensitive works.

Public Art on Campus

Public art has become a popular and effective way of building a sense of community and giving public spaces meaningful identity. Like all art, the works inspire observers to think about their world differently. This transformative quality gives public art an important educational role throughout the University of Minnesota Twin Cities campus. View StoryMap