Explore the Museum

Photo: Steve Rosenthal, 2014.
View of the Cape Ann Gallery. ©Steve Rosenthal.


Permanent Collection
The Cape Ann Museum features seven main galleries and five ancillary ones, each exploring a particular aspect of the region's history and culture through permanent and special exhibitions. The Cape Ann Gallery provides visitors with a glimpse back at the early history of Cape Ann from the Colonial period through the mid-19th century as well as an overview of how the Museum's collection has grown and evolved over the decades. The Lane Gallery spotlights the renowned 19th century luminist painter and Gloucester native Fitz Henry Lane (1804–1865) with a display of over 40 of his paintings, lithographs and pencil drawings. Two of the Museum's galleries are devoted to Cape Ann during the heyday of the offshore fishing industry when Gloucester Harbor was a forest of sails and fish harvested by fishermen from the Canadian Maritime Provinces, the Azores and Sicily were shipped across the country and around the world. Additional galleries showcase the Folly Cove Designer Collection, a first order Fresnel lens from Thachers Island, Cape Ann's granite quarrying industry and works from the Museum's permanent collection including masterpieces by such well known painters and sculptors as John SloanMarsden Hartley, Milton Avery, Katharine Lane Weems, Paul Manship and Walker Hancock. Work by contemporary artists is also included in the collection.

Fine Arts Collection
The Cape Ann Museum is at the heart of a long arts tradition, exhibiting work by Cape Ann artists from all periods, including the present. Through its permanent collections, special exhibitions, and programs, the Museum explores the connection between artists and place, examining how Cape Ann affects the artists it attracts and how those influences carry over in a broader sense to the history of art in America. Read more about the history of the arts on Cape Ann here.

Special Exhibitions
The Museum's twelve galleries host a rotating selection from the Museum's permanent collection, as well as serve as the venue for special exhibitions throughout the year.

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