Exhibitions (Opening Oct. 5)

Please note, our museum is currently closed for artifact preservation. Our Gallery and Gift Shop are open Thursday through Saturday, from 12pm to 4pm.

Thank you for your continued support and we look forward to seeing you in the fall.

The Machida family waited for transportation in Hayward, California, in May 1942. (National Archives)
The Machida family waited for transportation in Hayward, California, in May 1942. (National Archives)
Opening October 12, 2022

Citizen/Enemy: Japanese American Incarceration Camps 

President Franklin D. Roosevelt, through his Executive Order 9066, forced approximately 120,000 Americans of Japanese descent to leave their homes and property and spend the majority of WWII incarcerated in camps. These camps were located primarily in the interior of the American west including the Gila River War Relocation Center near Phoenix and the Federal Honor Camp located in the Santa Catalina mountains outside Tucson.

All the Single Ladies: Women Pioneers of the American West

All the Single Ladies: Women Pioneers of the American West tells select stories from these trailblazing women’s lives. Meet unmarried 19th century women homesteaders, Harvey girls, boarding house owners, teachers, madams, prostitutes, and entertainers. Learn how these women brought a richness and vivacity to the fabric of life in an emerging American West.

Bridget "Biddy" Mason
Bridget "Biddy" Mason
Toward Los Angeles, California.
Dorothea Lange, 1937.
Toward Los Angeles, California. Dorothea Lange, 1937.

The Dirty Thirties: New Deal Photography Frames the Migrants' Stories

"The Dirty Thirties" explores the journeys of rural migrants fleeing the Dust Bowl, drought, and economic difficulties during the 1930s. In desperate search for jobs and new opportunities, thousands of former farm owners and ex-tenant farmers left their homes in the Southern Plains states and set off to the cotton fields of Arizona and the “Promised Land” of California, where supposedly work could be found. This exhibit explores why the migrants left, their journey westward, their experiences living and working in Arizona, and what life could be like for those who traveled onto California. Told primarily through the compelling documentary photography taken under the auspices of the New Deal programs of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, some images from this exhibit will likely stay with you throughout your lifetime. ​​

Buffalo Soldiers: The 10th Cavalry Regiment Told Through the Art of David Laughlin (1928 - 2020)

Buffalo Soldiers: The 10th Cavalry Regiment Told Through the Art of David Laughlin paints a picture of daily life for African American soldiers serving in the post-Civil War American West. Through his paintings, drawings, and block prints, artist David Laughlin depicts the 10th Cavalry Regiment’s daily activities while stationed in AZ from 1885 - 1896. With the US Government pushing for western expansion, the Buffalo Soldiers’ tasks ranged from building outposts and laying telegraph lines to protecting settlers, stagecoaches and railroad crews and fighting Native Americans, outlaws and rustlers. Their days were full and difficult, however their military service offered them a chance to obtain better rights as citizens in the recently liberated United States.

For this exhibition we are partnering with GSAAC ; a local Buffalo Soldiers Educational group that is working to erect a Buffalo Soldiers Memorial Plaza here in Tucson. Help support GSAAC's memorial project mission by donating.

Texas Canyon Scout by David Laughlin
Texas Canyon Scout by David Laughlin

Ongoing Exhibitions


Desert Hollywood:
Celebrity Landscapes in Cinema

Desert Hollywood explores the “celebrity careers” of prominent Southwestern landscapes in film and television. More than mere backdrops, these landscapes including Monument Valley, the Imperial Sand Dunes, Lake Powell, the Moab area and the Sonoran Desert surrounding Tucson have become familiar, even iconic, through their supporting roles in film. Featuring video clips, stills, and behind-the-scenes photography. This exhibition explores how these landscapes have starred in a variety of genres from westerns to sci-fi, whether it's Monument Valley portraying central Arizona in John’s Ford’s 1939 Stagecoach or Yuma’s Imperial Sand Dunes portraying desert planet Tatooine in Star Wars IV: A New Hope.​​


The Dawn of American Landscape

Masterpieces by the preeminent Nineteenth century landscape painters. Works by Albert Bierstadt, Thomas Moran, Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot and other master artists. This collection captures the transcendental spirit of these artists' search and expression of the sublime.


Sacred Walls: Native American Muralism

The Museum celebrates the unique artistry of Native American muralists, via a large mural on the outside wall of the Museum and several floor-to-ceiling murals within the Museum by noted Native American artists including Dose, Dwayne Manuel, Jaque Fragua, & Anitra "Yukue" Molina.


The Weavings of the Diné

A premier collection of pre-1940’s Navajo textiles, including Chief’s blankets, Eye Dazzlers, Saddle blankets, Germantown weavings, Yei weavings and child's blankets.

Permanent Exhibitions


Arizona Women Uncovered

Who would have guessed! Arizona Women Uncovered offers a unique insight into the lives of early pioneer women through the evolution of their undergarments. 

Arizona Women Uncovered was curated in collaboration with Claudine Villardito of Black Cat Vintage.


Cartography of the Americas

Learn about North American history through an impressive collection of vintage maps from the great mapmakers of the new world. 


Hopi Artistry

Immerse yourself in the beautiful arts of the Hopi people.

TDART-Spider Woman

Teachings of the Spider Woman

Textiles tell stories, and this exhibit helps us to find them in each amazing, uniquely crafted work.


Weavings of The Dance:
​Early Yei Textiles

This collection of amazing weavings tells the story of Navajo healing ceremonies.

Past Exhibitions

2021 - 2022 Exhibitions

2019 - 2020 Exhibitions

2017 - 2018 Exhibitions

2016 - 2017 Exhibitions

2015 - 2016 Exhibitions