The Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art
at Cornell University opened in 1973. Designed by I. M. Pei & Partners, the Museum is named for benefactor Herbert F. Johnson, a distinguished graduate of Cornell’s Class of 1922, the late president and chairman of S C Johnson of Racine, Wisconsin, and a Cornell University trustee.
Since its beginning the Museum has been open to all without charge. Given Cornell University’s Land Grant status and its mandate to play an important role in the community, the Johnson continually seeks to fulfill its cultural and educational responsibility to serve a broad and diverse audience. More than 80,000 visitors come to the Museum each year.
Today, the Museum’s permanent collection numbers more than 35,000 works, spanning six millennia and encompassing art from most world cultures. Nearly 22,000 works of art are currently accessible to the public through Cornell University’s Luna Insight online image database.
Among the strengths of the collection are the holdings of Asian art; more than 22,000 prints, drawings, and photographs ranging from the fifteenth century to the present; modern and contemporary painting and sculpture; European art from ancient times to the present, African sculpture and textiles, and pre-Columbian sculpture and ceramics. The collections are the foundation for all Museum initiatives in teaching, research, and the development of projects to connect people, art, and ideas in creative ways.