The PMA Store is open during regular museum hours.
Wednesday, Saturday, and Sunday: 11 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Thursday and Friday: 11 a.m. - 8 p.m.
With an extensive collection and nationally renowned exhibitions, the Portland Museum of Art is the cultural heart of Portland, Maine. The PMA boasts significant holdings of American, European, and contemporary art, as well as iconic works from Maine—highlighting the rich artistic tradition of the state and its artists. The museum brings it all to life with unparalleled programming. From special members-only events, Free School Tours, and a commitment to family activities to PMA Films, curator talks, and exclusive tours of the Winslow Homer Studio—it’s all happening at the PMA.
The Portland Museum of Art creates outstanding exhibitions and educational programs to inspire our audiences. We embrace our rich past, dynamic present, and vibrant future to be a vital arts center for the city, region, and nation. Leveraging the strength of our collection, scholarship, and geographic location, we will excel in these distinct areas:
The ongoing exploration of the creative culture of the state of Maine within the context of American art and culture.
The interpretation of European modernism through our collection and programs.
The presentation of progressive exhibitions beyond our collection that address local and global issues.
The integration of our unique architectural campus into the fabric of Portland and the state of Maine.
The Portland Museum of Art strives to engage our audiences in a dialogue about the relevance of art and culture to our lives. Aspiring to facilitate this conversation through exhibitions, programs, and partnerships, we dedicate ourselves to serving and supporting our local and national community. In order to provide a learning environment for our audiences, we commit ourselves to good governance, professional development, and fiscal responsibility.
Almost everyone in the world, at one point or another, has drawn on paper. Whether in pen, pencil, or watercolor, creating art with paper is a near-universal experience, often tied to the wonder and magic of childhood and our first attempts to make sense of the world. Relative to other means, creating artwork on paper is highly accessible, lacking the supply requirements of oil painting or sculpture.
As we grow older, some of us find joy in developing our artistic practices, while most of us are content to doodle on notepads, in journals, and yes, on scraps of paper. So many professions—in graphic design, architecture, and education—begin through a love of drawing on paper.
It is for this reason that viewing works on paper offers one of the purest forms of experiencing art—we all have taken part in the practice. As a result, the relationship we can have with a work on paper is among the most intimate we can experience with art, making connections between the work and the individual that created it.
Masterworks on Paper: Highlights from the Portland Museum of Art perfectly captures the possibility and promise of art, drawing you in, creating connections, and expanding your world. Through this exhibition, we are inviting audiences to have personal and unique relationships with these exceptional artworks, connecting to the works of the world’s most beloved artists and strengthening the role art plays in our daily lives.
If you have yet to visit the exhibition, there’s still time. And if you’ve already experienced Masterworks, come back again on April 6, to see some of the exciting new works we’ve rotated in—it will be like seeing the exhibition again for the first time.
This exhibition is part of the first phase of Your Museum, Reimagined, unveiling the PMA collection in stunning new ways and improving access to these exquisite works. None of it would be possible without the boundless generosity and support of our members. Thank you.
Mark H. C. Bessire, Director
In June 2015, the PMA was awarded an Assessment Grant from the Grants to Green Maine program, a partnership between the Maine Development Foundation’s Maine Downtown Center, Efficiency Maine and the Maine Community Foundation.
The Grants to Green Maine program provides environmentally focused knowledge and funding to strengthen nonprofits located in historic buildings in downtowns in Maine, and has helped the PMA commission an Energy Audit, from local engineering firm Sparhawk Group. This assessment is identifying opportunities for the Museum to institute energy conservation measures, furthering its commitment to being a sustainable organization and allowing more of its resources to be directed to its core mission.
Grants to Green Maine is a partnership between the Maine Development Foundation’s Maine Downtown Center, Efficiency Maine and the Maine Community Foundation and is funded by Kendeda Fund of The Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta.
Members enable the PMA to provide spectacular programming, unique exhibitions, and remarkable events. They believe in the transformative power of the arts. They value community. If this sounds like you, we invite you to explore the many levels of membership available at the PMA and become a part of something special.
Originally founded as the Portland Society of Art, the Museum used a variety of exhibition spaces until 1908. That year Mrs. Margaret Jane Mussey Sweat bequeathed her three-story mansion, now known as the McLellan House, and sufficient funds to create a gallery in memory of her late husband, Lorenzo de Medici Sweat. Noted New England architect John Calvin Stevens designed the L. D. M. Sweat Memorial Galleries, which opened to the public in 1911.