Museum of Contemporary Native Arts

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The Museum of Contemporary Native Arts
Contact Information
Address 108 Cathedral Place Santa Fe, NM 87501
Phone Number 888.922.4242 (toll free)
Visit Facts

Monday, Wednesday-Saturday 10:00AM - 5:00PM

Sunday 12:00PM - 5:00PM

Adults: $10
Seniors(62+), Students with valid ID, NM residents: $5

Native people, veterans and their families, youth(16 & under), and NM residents visiting on Sunday: Free
Number 16

Patsy Phillips
(505) 428-5901

The Museum of Contemporary Native Arts (MoCNA) is a center of the Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA) located in downtown Santa Fe, NM. The MoCNA is the country’s only museum for exhibiting, collecting and interpreting the most progressive work of contemporary Native artists[1].



The Museum of Contemporary Native Arts is the only museum in the world dedicated solely to advancing the scholarship, discourse and understanding of contemporary Native arts. As the global leader in the acquisition, presentation and study of contemporary Native arts, MoCNA challenges pre-conceived misperceptions of contemporary Native arts[1].

Becoming a Member

If you are interested in becoming a member of the MoCNA, you may contact the IAIA Membership Office at:
Address: 108 Cathedral Place Santa Fe, NM 87501
Phone: 505.983.8900 x122


One of the ways to become involved with the MoCNA is to become a member of the museum. Museum members are entitled to many benefits that vary based on the level of membership. Listed below are the different levels of membership and the benefits included with each.

  • Individual $40+:
    • Personalized membership card
    • Unlimited admission for one adult
    • 10% discount in Museum Store
    • 10% discount through online Museum Store
    • Discounts on ticketed events and workshops
    • Advanced notice of all exhibitions, openings, and programs
    • Sneak previews of museum exhibitions
    • Invitation to a New Member Tour
    • Subscription to IAIA's Newswinds publication
    • Emails highlighting our calendar of events

  • Family $60+ Includes all benefits of individual membership for two adults and accompanying children under the age of 18.

  • Sponsor $100+ Includes all previously listed benefits plus:
    • Two complimentary guest passes
    • Reciprocal membership at 100+ North American museums
    • Subscription to Native Peoples magainze

  • Patron $500+ Includes all previously listed benefits plus:
    • Six complimentary guest passes
    • $25.00 gift certificate for museum store
    • Annual recognition in museum lobby
    • Special invitation to exhibition "sneak peeks"
    • An invitation to specially arranged visits to private collections and artists' studios

  • Benefactor $1,000+Includes all previously listed benefits plus:
    • Eight complimentary guest passes
    • Annual Individual Gift Membership for the recipient of your choice
    • Copies of museum exhibition catalogs
    • Eligibility to rent museum spaces for private gatherings

  • Director's Circle $2500+ Includes all previously listed benefits plus:
    • Ten one time use guest passes to share with friends
    • Behind-the-scenes tour and reception for you and five friends

  • IAIA Partners $10,000+

As top donors, IAIA Partners receive many exclusive benefits, including special recognition on IAIA website and museum lobby, private events at members; homes and artists' studios, travel opportunities and exclusive programs at the museum and campus.


In 1972, the IAIA began an art collection from numerous donations from outside artists and private collections in addition to work from a student honors program. This collection sparked the idea for the creation of a museum for contemporary native arts. In 1990, an official building for the museum was acquired. Until then, the art was stored on the campus of the Santa Fe Indian School and most pieces were kept in storage. The building the IAIA acquired for the new museum location was the old post office that was in great need of restoration. Architects restored the exterior of the building and remodeled the interior to include classrooms in addition to a series of galleries. Due to the increasing amount of American Indian contemporary artwork and the need for educational spaces, the collections from the MoCNA are now housed both in the museum as well as in a location on the IAIA campus[1].

National Collection of Contemporary Native Art

Steven L. Chrisjohn Sr (Oneida)BFA 2008 Studio ArtsThe Real People, 2008marble, copper, laminate birch29" x 26" x 9.5"
The Real People by Steven L. Chrisjohn Sr

The IAIA began collecting American Indian artwork in 1962 by its students and faculty. When this collection was made available to the public, private collectors began making donations to increase the collection's size and depth. In the 1970s, the IAIA realized the importance of

Linley Logan (Seneca)AFA 1985 Studio Arts/Museum StudiesHeno (the Thunderer) Coming from the East, 2009oil on board, plastic toys35" x 39"A.
Heno (the Thunderer) Coming from the East by Linley Logan

collecting work from renowned artists in order to enhance their collection.By the 1990s when the museum acquired an official building, the collection was well rounded with works by earlier artists in addition to the newer contemporary art. At this point, the collection was named "The National Collection of Contemporary Native Art".

Currently, there are close to 7,500 artworks in the collection comprised of paintings, works on paper, sculpture, ceramics, jewelry, photography, contemporary apparel, textiles, cultural arts, new media, and installations. The museum is committed to a collecting practice that creates history for the future. The collection illustrates a continuity of Native thought and aesthetics that reinforces scholarship by collecting works that speak to earlier dialogues and continuing discussions of how Native expression informs and challenges mainstream perceptions of Native art and culture[1].

Two-Dimensional Works

There are over 2,000 paintings and another 2,000 graphic works and drawings in the National Collection of Contemporary Native Art. This collection continues to grow. Several important works have been collected from the printmaking studio of the IAIA[1].

Three-Dimensional Works

The National Collection of Contemporary Native Art includes sculpture and ceramics from student work as well as from renowned Native artists, some of which are are former students of the IAIA . The collection also houses close to 1,000 3-D cultural art pieces such as baskets, beadwork, and pottery. In the 1960s, Cherokee fashion designer, Lloyd Kiva New helped to establish a commercial design studio at the school. Some designs, screened works, and woven works are among the 3-D works in the collection[1].

Notable Artists

Artists that have had their work exhibited at the MoCNA:


In addition to some permanent pieces, the MoCNA has many different exhibitions that change regularly. Current exhibitions can be found here.

Vision Project

The MoCNA Vision Project is a Ford Foundation initiative whose goals are to establish an Indigenous discourse that reflects the vibrancy and potency of the contemporary Native arts field at its most current level of activity[2]. Contributors to the project provide artwork and writing to work towards the production of a book, a multi-media website, an educational resource guide, short film and an exhibition.

See Also


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 Official Website of the Institute of American Indian Arts
  2. Official Website of the Museum of Contemporary Native Arts

External Links

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