Serving Campus and Community by Balancing Traditional and Contemporary Art to Explore the Connections Made through Visual Culture.

Our Values

We value innovation and creativity.

We value collaboration and partnerships.

We value respectful intergenerational exchange of ideas and discoveries.

We value professionalism and service.

Our Core Beliefs

We believe the Visual Arts can provide a unique insight into our shared modern world.

We believe that the past provides a means to explore the present and the future.

We believe that it is appropriate to explore complex questions about society at a university art museum.

We believe that Museums should be safe spaces of engagement and exchange for all.

These are the guiding concepts by which we define our curatorial and programmatic practice.

These are the guiding principles by which we set our goals.

Our Vision

It is the vision of the NIU Art Museum to establish itself as a premier cultural institution for the region with strong curricular connections for the campus.

Statement of Purpose

As an art museum belonging to an academic institution, the dual roles of the NIU Art Museum are to contribute significantly to the university’s educational curriculum, and to provide opportunities for art education and cultural enrichment through outreach and service to the people of the northern Illinois community. The NIU Art Museum educates, preserves, exhibits and enlightens by balancing the challenges of contemporary art with the riches of traditional visual media for a comprehensive examination of visual culture. It does so with National Standards and Best Practices for Museums in mind. In alignment with the university’s mission and values, the NIU Art Museum consciously tries in its exhibition curation and programming development to:

  • Challenge inequities by engaging diversity
  • Make global interconnections reflective of rapid societal and economic changes
  • Work to create a thriving community

By doing so, we align our mission with that of the university, our non-museum parent organization.

Contact Us

NIU Art Museum
Altgeld Hall 116

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Gallery Hours

10 a.m. - 1 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday
Noon - 6 p.m. Thursday, Friday
Noon - 3 p.m. Saturday and by appointment for group tours.

Closed university holidays and between exhibitions.