The original MFA opened its doors to the public on July 4, 1876, the nation’s centennial. Built in Copley Square, the MFA was then home to 5,600 works of art. Over the next several years, the collection and number of visitors grew exponentially, and in 1909 the Museum moved to its current home on Huntington Avenue.
Today the MFA is one of the most comprehensive art museums in the world; the collection encompasses nearly 500,000 works of art. We welcome more than one million visitors each year to experience art from ancient Egyptian to contemporary, special exhibitions, and innovative educational programs.
The Museum has undergone significant expansion and change in recent years; 2010 marked the opening of the Art of the Americas Wing, with four levels of American art from ancient to modern. In 2011, the west wing of the Museum was transformed into the Linde Family Wing for Contemporary Art, with new galleries for contemporary art and social and learning spaces. Improved and new galleries for European, Asian, and African art have opened through 2013, with more to come.
In 1876, the Museum established the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, one of the oldest and most distinguished art schools in the United States. In 2016, the School became part of Tufts University’s School of Arts and Sciences, with which it had been affiliated since 1945. The School of the Museum of Fine Arts at Tufts, as it is now called, is unique: the only art school in the United States that is part of a research university and also affiliated with a major art museum. SMFA at Tufts students earn Tufts undergraduate and graduate degrees and enjoy a rich range of academic and co-curricular resources as full members of the Tufts University student community.