The Museum of Art and Archaeology is a scholarly museum that seeks to expand the frontiers of knowledge regarding art, archaeology, and the rise of human civilization. Scholars from all disciplines are welcome to study the Museum's collections and associated records. Any reasonable and appropriate request for access is considered. Given the significance and sensitivity of the collections, however, certain guidelines have been established to govern access, publication and/or other uses of the Museum’s collections of art and antiquities, as well as related documentation, in order to assure the integrity and value of the collections for future generations.
Availability of collections and their associated documentation is determined by the supervising curator or Museum Director subject to the condition of the materials, applicable state and federal laws (including copyright), University policies, donor restrictions, and consideration of issues of cultural sensitivity. Some materials, such as objects on loan, on exhibit, in process of conservation, or currently in use by other researchers, may be unavailable for study at any given point.
Visitors are asked to make written application at least 3 weeks in advance of their visit with the curator in charge of the collections to which access is desired. This is accomplished by either filling out and submitting the "Researcher Application Form," available online in Adobe Acrobat (.pdf) format, or by sending a letter to the appropriate curator describing the collection or specific objects to be studied and the nature of the research project being undertaken, the requested dates of access, and any special circumstances relating to the request. All requests for access are granted subject to curatorial review and availability of staff and workspace. College or university students must have requests verified by a faculty member or other responsible professional. Approval will be confirmed via telephone or email. Only visitors having a confirmed appointment will be granted access to collections and archives; walk-in access is not allowed.
The Museum can provide images of most objects on request. Reproduction rights and fees are provided on request from the Museum Registrar. In some instances reproduction rights are not held by the Museum, and in such cases the researcher must separately arrange for appropriate releases from the holders of those rights.
Visitors may photograph collections for purposes of documentation using their own photographic equipment, subject to appropriate curatorial approval. Any photographs taken by visiting researchers are to be used for personal research and documentary purposes only. Clearance for any other use, including publication, electronic transmission, general distribution or commercial use, must be secured from the Museum's Registrar. Flash photography is not permitted in the Museum's galleries, although photography using available light is welcomed.
The Museum accepts requests to use and reproduce material in its collections or for which it holds copyright, and reserves the right to determine appropriate charges for such use. Publication of any material requires written permission from the Museum and any holders of the copyright where necessary. Fieldnotes and research records made during MAA-supported research and fieldwork are generally regarded as the property of the Museum, but clarification on this issue may be required in particular instances, and should be requested well in advance. All requests for use of copyrighted material must be authorized by both the supervising curator for the collection involved and the Museum Director.
Forms & Resources
- Research Application Form (please contact museum for the necessary forms)
- Destructive Sampling Application (please contact museum for the necessary forms)
- Museum of Art and Archaeology Collections Management Policy
- Museum of Art and Archaeology Institutional Code of Ethics
- Image Use
- Statement Regarding Nazi-Era Provenance Research
- Statement Regarding the Acquisition of Unprovenanced Antiquities
Closed on Mondays and University holidays
"I still remember the feeling of awe and disbelief when I was alone and walked in the room with those casts." --Ruth Tofle, chair of architecture, winner of the 2013 distinguished faculty award from the MU Alumni Association