The History of the Newcomb Art Museum of New Orleans


New Orleans’ Newcomb Art Museum is nothing short of a gem of the city. It wonderfully showcases the achievements and artistic heritage of New Orleans’ women. The museum boasts a more than century-long history and has become one of New Orleans’ most prominent museums.

Origin and Early Years

Tulane University established the H. Sophie Newcomb Memorial College for Women in 1886. Newcomb College was known for its art department, which highly encouraged many aspiring women to pursue art as a career. The curriculum consisted of pottery classes, decorative art classes, and the making of textiles. The department received high praise for producing great artists.

The Newcomb Pottery Movement

In the late 19th century, the Newcomb Pottery Movement began, significantly shaping the museum’s current identity. Mr. Joseph Meyer, a faculty member of Newcomb, was one of the leaders of this movement, and he was best known for his notable works of pottery. He propelled the establishment to the forefront of the pottery realm of New Orleans, generating attention from across the country and even Europe, cementing the college’s reputation as a place for incredible creations.

The Transition to a Museum

The Newcomb Art Gallery was eventually established, providing the college with a place to showcase the best works created. The gallery’s scope eventually expanded and began showcasing a wide variety of art created by the women of Newcomb College and others. In 2015, Newcomb Art Gallery was transformed into a museum where it donned the name Newcomb Art Museum of New Orleans. This transformation further emphasized the commitment to recognizing and showcasing the remarkable women artists of the world and the city.

Overall Impact and Purpose Today

Today, the Newcomb Art Museum continues to impact the City of New Orleans’ art scene and reputation. It continues to serve as a place to showcase the women artists of the city and their unique works, and challenges they have gone through. The museum provides commentary on issues that still loom today and engages the local community.

The Newcomb Art Museum, a Place of Hope and Beauty

In the realm of showcasing the history of women’s challenges and adversity in the art world of New Orleans, the Newcomb Art Museum of New Orleans is at the forefront. The museum serves today to inspire future generations, highlight amazing women artists before us, and uplift all who visit with hope. This fantastic museum is a must-see for anyone who visits New Orleans.

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