About Us

Our Mission

New Bedford Art Museum is dedicated to engaging a diverse audience in relevant exhibitions, exemplary education, and creative experiences as a vital innovative center for the arts.


Our Story

The south coast is rich in culture, history, and diversity. And rich in art! New Bedford Art Museum is at the heart of New Bedford’s Seaport Cultural District. Located in the historic downtown, New Bedford Art Museum offers engaging exhibitions and outstanding educational programs for members and visitors of all ages.

On February 3, 2014, New Bedford Art Museum and ArtWorks! Partners for the Arts & Community merged. The combining of these two long-standing art organizations has created an exciting organization committed to serving the community and beyond. At the core of what we do is making art accessible to everyone.

Offering engaging exhibitions of artwork from around the corner and across the ocean, there’s always something exciting and thought-provoking to see. Linger, learn and appreciate art and artistic expression strolling through the Museum’s main Skylight Gallery. You’ll discover new delights as you explore the Museum’s home, a former bank that creates a unique and unusual setting for art. Continually changing exhibitions across the year vary in subject matter and artistic medium. Contemporary and historic art, as well as local, national and international artists, have been displayed. A great schedule of programs such as lectures, artist talks, and inspired performances adds depth and context to your experience of the art.

In partnership with the New Bedford Free Public Library, we showcase works from their extensive collection in our City Gallery. New Bedford’s wealthy and cultured history is reflected in the many world-class works the collection holds. In the Heritage Gallery and Fiber Optic Center® New Media Gallery, you’ll find a rotating contemporary perspective featuring local and national artists.

The Museum strives to offer dynamic and interactive educational opportunities. Our after school and vacation programs for youth run the gamut. We provide hands-on creative experiences led by professional artists and art educators. Many of our programs are free or supported by financial assistance for students in need. Our artMOBILES travel across the city every summer bringing free art activities to playgrounds and community centers. And we have our own clay studio and digital media lab offering classes for kids and adults!

New Bedford Art Museum invites you to experience the art at the heart of the south coast.

Equity Statement

New Bedford Art Museum values the arts as a universal language and recognizes it is crucial to be an organization that integrates equity, diversity, inclusion, and access int o everything we do. We strive to continually represent artists and serve an audience and community that reflects an appreciation and understanding of thebroad spectrum of individual differences – cultural, racial, religious, socio-economic, or based on sexual identity, gender, physical, developmental or intellectual ability.

Our endeavors spark engagement through art and provide access to the arts for all people. This allyship and support spans across all Museum staff, Board, volunteers, programming, events, and media. We will hold ourselves accountable to do this important diversity, equity, inclusion, and access work by:

  • Being transparent about the way we work and the way decisions are made

  • Continuing regular workshops and training for Museum staff and Board

  • Developing policies as tools for Museum-wide decision making in areas such as hiring, exhibition planning, and program development

  • Continuing to revise our strategic plan to make sure that it reflects these initiatives

  • Revising this Equity Statement on an ongoing basis and incorporating it into our strategic plan. 

We understand that equity and inclusion work is difficult and we acknowledge that we will make mistakes as we learn and grow. We embrace the opportunity to keep learning and evolving and challenge everyone to do the same.

When coming to see us, visitors who display a valid Handicap Placard at a metered space downtown will be exempt from parking meter fees (or) feeding the meter.

UP Organization

New Bedford Art Museum is committed to creating an environment that fosters inclusion and belonging. Please join us in ensuring that every visitor feels welcomed and respected. The Museum is proud to be a designated UP organization as part of an accessibility program developed by the Massachusetts Cultural Council. UP (Universal Participation) supports the growth and development of organizations that recognize the power of inclusive design to grow audiences and enhance cultural experiences for all and embrace inclusivity as core to their mission. New Bedford Art Museum is committed to making its facilities, programs, and services accessible to all audiences. We're actively serving our diverse audiences' needs through participation in programs such as the Massachusetts Cultural Council's UP-ILN initiative. For suggestions and/or feedback on accessibility at WAM, please visit one of the front desks and speak with a staff member or email [email protected].

Land Acknowledgement Statement

We would like to acknowledge that the land we live, work, learn, and commune on is the original homelands of the Wampanoag and Massachusetts Nations. We acknowledge the painful history of genocide and forced removal from this territory, and we honor and respect the many diverse Indigenous peoples still connected to this land on which we gather.

New England Museum Association (NEMA)

The New Bedford Art Museum is a proud affiliate of the New England Museum Association (NEMA). The New England Museum Association connects a community engaged in learning, collaboration, and action, to cultivate a better museum world.


Stategic Plan

The New Bedford Art Museum’s 2024 Strategic Plan is coming soon.

Annual Report

Welcome to a few of our favorite moments at New Bedford Art Museum. In our online Annual Report, a wonderful year emerges through pictures and numbers. Every year, we present about a dozen exhibitions, welcome hundreds in our studio classes, engage thousands in educational opportunities and creative experiences — and introduce many artists to the community.

To learn more about New Bedford Art Museum and future initiatives, please click here read our digital Annual Report from Fiscal Year 2022.

New Bedford Art Museum Board of Trustees

A. Lawrence Jenkens, Chair
Peter Covill, Treasurer
Marcelina Pina-Christian, Secretary

Audra Andrade DePina
Jonathan Howland
Ana Jones
Howard Klein

Gig Lang
Tim Mahoney, Co-Chair
Mark Medeiros
Molly Goodman