Seattle Art Museum
1300 1st Avenue
Seattle, King County, Washington, 98101
The Seattle Art Museum is an art museum located in Seattle, Washington. It operates three major facilities: its main museum; the Seattle Asian Art Museum in Volunteer Park on Capitol Hill, and Olympic Sculpture Park on the central Seattle waterfront.
The Seattle Art Museum (SAM) collection has grown from 1,926 pieces in 1933 to nearly 25,000 as of 2008. Its original museum provided an area of 25,000 square feet (2,300 m2); the present facilities provide 312,000 square feet (29,000 m2) plus a 9-acre park. Paid staff have increased from 7 to 303, and the museum library has grown from approximately 1,400 books to 33,252.
SAM traces its origins to the Seattle Fine Arts Society (organized 1905) and the Washington Arts Association (organized 1906), which merged in 1917, keeping the Fine Arts Society name. In 1931 the group renamed itself as the Art Institute of Seattle.
The museum's main collection moved to its present location on First Avenue in December 1991; the museum's original building became the Seattle Asian Art Museum in 1994. The building is a limestone-covered rectangle with a streak of tile and terra cotta around its outside.
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