The move from the Arts Center of Mississippi to the new facility was small geographically, amounting to no more than a city block, yet it pushed the Museum light years ahead in terms of capabilities, technology, and the overall philosophy of what an art museum means to the community. The facility’s brilliant architectural makeover reflects the Museum’s mission to become a symbolic “museum without walls” – an inviting public space that offers relevant and meaningful cultural experiences to both the Jackson community and the state of Mississippi. The completed building represents Phase 1 of the decade-long plan to transform the Museum’s surroundings into a cohesive cultural district in Downtown Jackson.
The architecture of the Museum is a tangible manifestation of a philosophical mission. For many years, the mission of MMA was “collecting, preserving and exhibiting art,” a typical museum mission statement. However, when the Board of Trustees of the Museum began to plan the building process for the new facility, the mission was changed to “engage Mississippians in the visual arts,” a statement that focuses on community interaction and personal experience. The architects, Glavé and Holmes in Richmond, Virginia, and Dale & Associates locally, applied this new philosophical mission to the architecture of the building, creating a sleek, open design for the once-rectangular building. The Museum lobby and entryway is filled with light through the use of a large amount of glass and by raising the roof of the entryway. Museum visitors plainly see not only the entrance to the Museum but other visitors inside the building, breaking down barriers and creating a transparent front door that makes everyone feel welcome. The vibrant Palette Café by Viking encourages visitors to sit and relax, and the patio and terrace create welcoming and comfortable spaces that are, literally, the front porch of the downtown cultural district.
Tuesday-Saturday, 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Sunday, 12:00 noon – 5:00 p.m.
Contact – Beth Batton, email@example.com