The Dayton Art Institute
The Dayton Art Institute is committed to enriching lives and serving the community by creating meaningful experiences with art.
Founded in 1919, The Dayton Art Institute is one of the region’s premier fine arts museums. In addition to exhibiting outstanding special exhibitions and impressive collections of art from throughout the world, the museum is renowned for education programming that includes an array of offerings for diverse audiences.
The Dayton Art Institute sits atop a hill on the edge of the Great Miami River overlooking downtown Dayton. The museum’s founding patrons included prominent community leaders such as Orville Wright and the Patterson Brothers, founders of NCR. The museum’s landmark building, designed by prominent museum architect Edward B. Green of Buffalo and completed in 1930, was modeled after the Villa d’Este near Rome and the Villa Farnese at Caprarola in Italy, both examples of sixteenth century Italian Renaissance architecture.
Over the past several years, the museum’s collection has grown significantly through generous gifts of artwork by local donors, including important Oceanic art, Asian art, and American fine and decorative art collections. The collection spans 5,000 years of art history.
The Dayton Art Institute also hosts concerts, family and youth programs, classes, social events and more. The museum’s signature events include the annual Art Ball and Oktoberfest. The Experiencenter, the museum’s interactive gallery for families and young people, offers thematically based exhibitions that stimulate curiosity and creativity. The Dayton Art Institute is one of the area’s premier settings for weddings, parties, corporate meetings and special events.
Have never been here before. Attended an amazing exhibit on New Year's Eve day. Quite pleased with both the collections, the staff and the architecture of the building. What a jewel! Would like to come again in the Spring or Summer when the weather is more cooperative. Lived in Dayton area over 55 years ago. Much has changed but still beautiful. Thank you for a wonderful experience. By the way, we drove in from North of Columbus.
Wonderful gem of a museum. A bit on the smaller side but nonetheless a great gallery. The building is beautiful and has many great pieces. The Asian collection is very impressive. I didn't get to go to the courtyard due to the weather. Admission rates are very reasonable. A must see if you are in the Dayton area!
Great venue and parking is easy. Also easy to find with very helpful staff at the front desk. Great bargain to get season passes (unlimited entry to the permanent collection). Passes can be used at other museums that participate in the program (Cleveland, Columbus and others). They have better traveling exhibits than many larger cities. Pay them a visit and become a member!
My husband I love the Dayton art institute. The building itself is actually stunning. The docents are knowledgeable and passionate about art. I have been on docent led tours there with two home school groups, and docents did a good job of keeping their talks interesting for both the children and adults in the group. The children's area is quite well done, with lots of hands -on art for kids to enjoy exploring.
We love coming to the Dayton Art Institute! The paintings and sculptures are simply beautiful. It is so easy to navigate through the museum and there is so much to see and appreciate. Every time we visit, we see and learn something new! The building itself is a treasure with all the architectural elements.