The St. Louis Art Museum sits in the historic Forest Park neighborhood of St. Louis, Missouri. The museum was founded in 1879, and during this time was known as the St. Louis School and Museum of Fine Arts. The museum site was originally located in downtown St. Louis and was moved to Forest Park location after the 1904 World's Fair.
The St. Louis Art Museum is one of the leading art museums in the United States. The museum houses a collection of over 300,000 works of art, and collections contain work from almost every culture and time period. Pre-Columbian art, Oceanic art, ancient Chinese bronzes, European and American art from the 19th and 20th century are all represented in the exhibits and displays located at the museum.
The museum has a vast collection of ancient art that includes Near Eastern, Egyptian and Classical civilizations. One of the most popular exhibits on display is the mummy Amen-Nestawy-Nakht. The well preserved plaster case is on display along with other works, including stone vessels from Egypt that date back to 3,000 B.C. The Near Eastern art in the collection include a cast copper bulls head from Samaria, stone reliefs from Assyria and Persia, Luristan bronze and a Babylonian foundation cylinder. The Roman and post-Roman collection is filled with marble statues and ancient gold openwork bracelet.
The collection of American art is well represented in the St. Louis Art Museum. The paintings and sculptures in the collection encompass Colonial artwork to abstract art of the first part of the 20th century. Artists such as Martin Johnson Head, Jasper Cropsey, Henry Lewis, and Robert Duncanson have paintings on display on the main floor.
The exhibit of Modern Art in the museum covers more than 150 years of European sculptors and painters. The Modern Art collection is one of the most comprehensive and largest works of art on display in the museum. Some of the most notable artists in the collection are Claude Monet, Vincent van Gogh, Gustave Courbet, Franz Marc, Henry Moore and Paul Klee.
The Department of Prints, Drawings and Photographs contains approximately 14,000 works of art on paper. There are 3,000 photographs, 8,500 prints and almost 1,500 watercolors, drawings, and collages, which represent a wide range of cultures and time periods. The most notable photographers in the gallery are Walker Evans, Edward Curtis, Andreas Feiningers and Moneta Sleet. The works in the collection that are done on paper can only be displayed for short periods of time because of light sensitivity. These works on paper can also be seen by appointment in the Study Room of the museum.
The St. Louis Art Museum is dedicated to educating the public on works of art in the collections. Guided tours are available for visitors of all ages, backgrounds and knowledge levels. Entrance to the museum is free of charge and the museum is open daily, seven days per week.