Street Address
500 Tate Street
Greensboro, NC 27412
Mailing Address
P.O. Box 26170
Greensboro, NC 27402
phone: 336-334-5770
Tuesday - Wednesday, Friday10 AM - 5 PM
Thursday10 AM - 9 PM
Sunday, Saturday1 PM - 5 PM
Museum tours offer a unique experience of guided observation and personal discovery. Our volunteer docents participate in a training program that emphasizes the use of questions, gallery activities, and group discussion to help visitors understand and interpret works of art. All tours are free.
Free and open to the public.
Museum Type(s)
Gift Shop
Special Event Rental
Group Tours
Nancy Doll, Director
Ann Grimaldi, Curator of Education
Elaine D. Gustafson, Curator of Collections
Xandra Eden, Curator of Exhibitions
Loring Mortensen, Public + Community Relations Officer


The permanent collection of the Weatherspoon Art Museum is considered to be one of the foremost of its kind in the Southeast. It represents all major art movements from the beginning of the 20th century to the present. Of the nearly 6,000 works in the collection are pieces by such prominent figures as Sol LeWitt, Robert Mangold, Cindy Sherman, Al Held, Alex Katz, Henry Tanner, Louise Nevelson, Mark di Suvero, Deborah Butterfield, and Robert Rauschenberg. The museum regularly lends to major exhibitions nationally and internationally.

The Weatherspoon also is known for its adventurous and innovative exhibition program. Through a dynamic annual calendar of fifteen to eighteen exhibitions and a multi-disciplinary educational program for audiences of all ages, the museum provides an opportunity for audiences to consider artistic, cultural, and social issues of our time and enriches the life of our university, community, and region.


American artists working in the first decades of the twentieth century looked to many sources for inspiration: the city, science and technology, European art forms, etc.-- in order to explore concepts, emotions, and even the possibility of a universal visual language.

Artists of this time also were responding to changing perceptions of traditions, artistic practices, the figure, and the self. Works created in the first half of the twentieth century demonstrate the creative possibilities of early modernism, social realism, abstract expressionism, and geometric abstraction.

While traditional approaches to art making did not disappear, artists during the second half of the twentieth century began to explore new forms such as happenings, performance, earthworks, installation, video and film, processes that continue to influence and inspire artists today.

Artists more recently have questioned the concept of originality and the art object itself and have increasingly borrowed imagery from popular culture, mass media, and art history. Conflicting social, political, philosophical, and artistic ideas abound in contemporary art today. The resulting complexity may at times seem confusing, but it offers a richness and diversity never seen before.

The Lenoir C. Wright Collection

By the early 1700s, Edo (modern day Tokyo) had grown into a bustling metropolis of more than a million inhabitants and its vibrant urban culture became the inspiration for a new form of artistic expression known as ukiyo-e: floating world pictures. The floating world referred to the escapist and ephemeral pleasures offered in Edo's kabuki theaters and the Yoshiwara, a licensed brothel district on the northern outskirts of the city. Star actors and glamorous courtesans are the subjects of most floating world images, but as ukiyo-e artists were especially attuned to popular pastimes and pursuits, they also exploited the public's love of travel and its fascination with samurai history. By the early nineteenth century, landscapes and warriors had been added to the repertoire of floating world images.

Ukiyo-e artists preferred the woodblock print medium because it was flexible enough to accommodate a wide range of artistic expression. The medium also facilitated mass production, from cheaply produced black and white images to luxurious full-color designs using exotic pigments and precious minerals. Successful designs were issued in several editions to meet popular demand. These prints carried Edo?s urban culture and floating world sensibilities far beyond their origins in the entertainment districts.

The Lenoir C. Wright Collection of Japanese woodblock prints at the Weatherspoon Art Museum is the only collection of its kind and depth in the State and numbers in excess of seven hundred works of art. The collection has recently been the focus of a major traveling exhibition accompanied by a catalogue by Dr. Allen Hockley of Dartmouth College.

Dillard Collection of Art on Paper

Since 1965, the Weatherspoon Art Museum at The University of North Carolina at Greensboro has enjoyed the corporate benefaction of the Dillard Paper Company?now xpedx. The company.s generous support has enabled both the presentation of the Art on Paper exhibition and, through the Dillard Fund, the development of an important collection of works on paper purchased from those shows.

Anyone who has ever worked with drawings knows their value as primary documents, and that they tell a great deal about the creative process. Artists use drawing as a way to generate and stockpile ideas. Even under the most austere conditions, drawing requires only a pencil, some paper, and an idea. Drawings constitute a unique genre, and every artist, whether a painter, sculptor, or printmaker, develops a personal rapport with it, even while exploring various techniques and media. The Dillard Collection, conceived first and foremost as a teaching tool that offers students an empirical, hands-on encounter with original works of art, continues to function in that capacity.

The Claribel and Etta Cone Collection

Claribel and Etta Cone were two of the thirteen children of Herman and Helen Cone, Jewish immigrants who found success in America in the grocery and textile industries. They were raised in Baltimore, where Claribel (1864-1929) earned a medical degree (an "unladylike" ambition in those days) from Woman's Medical College. Etta (1870-1949) was a dedicated pianist who also managed the Cone household. In 1898, it was Etta?s task to decorate the Cone family's Victorian-style parlor and she bought five paintings by American Impressionist Theodore Robinson. These were the first acquisition in what would become a lifetime of collecting.

In Paris, the Cone sisters met Pablo Picasso in 1905 and Henri Matisse in 1906. They began to collect their work when modern art was still not widely known, let alone appreciated. Their adventurous spirit in collecting over the next forty years resulted in the formation of one of the most important collections of modern art in America. Eventually, the sisters gave about 3,000 works of art to the Baltimore Art Museum, where they may be seen today.

There is, of course, a second Cone collection, one less well known internationally but certainly treasured here in North Carolina: the Claribel and Etta Cone Collection at the Weatherspoon Art Museum. How did a part of their collection come here, to the University of North Carolina at Greensboro? As mentioned, the Cone family was successful in the textile business, and many of their mills were located in the South. Moses Cone, brother of Claribel and Etta, built a vacation home in North Carolina at Blowing Rock. Etta was a frequent visitor there, as were other members of the Cone family. One such member was Etta's sister-in-law, Laura Weill (Mrs. Julius) Cone. Laura Cone was a loyal alumna of UNCG. She knew that the Weatherspoon Art Gallery had been established on campus in 1942, and knew, too, that the young organization was struggling to get established. Laura Cone asked her sister-in-law, Etta, if she would consider making a donation of art to the Weatherspoon. In her will dated May 18, 1949, Etta left to the Woman?s College (as it was known then) an astonishing collection of sixty-seven Matisse prints and six Matisse bronzes as well as a large number of modern prints and drawings, including works by Pablo Picasso, Felix Valloton, Raoul Dufy and John Graham.

EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMS: K-12 Students & Teachers

Designed around your curriculum goals, our lesson plans, guided tours, and educator workshops offer several choices in bringing art into the classroom. Don't see what you are looking for? Contact the education department at 336-334-5770 or

University Students & Faculty

As a part of the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, the Weatherspoon plays a unique role in engaging learners across disciplines and research fields. We invite experimentation and collaboration with students and faculty whether through research, independent study, or a gallery class tailored to course objectives. Contact the education department at 336-334-5770 or for details.

Foundations for Learning

Foundations for Learning is a course designed to help first-year students make a successful transition to UNCG. The Weatherspoon offers an interactive tour for FFL classes aimed looking at art, discussing different points of view, and feeling comfortable within the museum. Schedule tours by contacting Terri Dowell-Dennis at or 336-256-1449.

Each semester, a guest artist is invited by the Falk Visiting Artist committee to present a solo exhibition at the Weatherspoon and participate in a three-day residency comprised of graduate critiques and public talks. The program gives students at UNCG and members of the community an opportunity to meet and learn from artists who are active in the field. The program has been produced collaboratively with the Art Department since 1982. Past Falk Visiting Artists include Lynda Benglis, Dario Robleto, Julie Heffernan, and Dike Blair.

Faculty & Student Exhibitions

Every other year, members of the UNCG studio art faculty are invited to present recent work in a group exhibition organized at the Weatherspoon. Graduate students in the UNCG Department of Art are invited to present their thesis work at the Weatherspoon in a group exhibition each May.

Guided Tours

Free guided tours are available to groups of six or more guests and are typically 50-minutes. Guided tours stress observation and critical thinking skills and may be customized to address your curriculum goals. Help ensure a good experience for all our visitors, please schedule guided tours 3-weeks in advance. See Tour Tips.

Self-guided Tours

Self-guided tours provide educators the opportunity to bring ideas and skills from the classroom to the museum. The education department can suggest ways to customize your self-guided visit with lesson plans and other pre-visit materials. Help ensure a good experience for all our visitors, please schedule self-guided tours 3-weeks in advance. See Tour Tips.

Noon @ the Spoon Tours

20-minute docent or curator led tour offered the second Tuesday of each month. See Event Calendar for the next Noon @ the Spoon.

Bus Transportation

Thanks to the Hillsdale Foundation, bus transportation is now available for Guilford County Schools. For guidelines, contact Terri Dowell-Dennis at 336-256-1449 or

Sculpture @ WAM Audio Tour

Use your cell phone for a free audio tour.


The Weatherspoon Art Museum at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro acquires, preserves, exhibits, and interprets modern and contemporary art for the benefit of its multiple audiences, including university, community, regional, and beyond. Through these activities, the museum recognizes its paramount role of public service, and enriches the lives of diverse individuals by fostering an informed appreciation and understanding of the visual arts and their relationship to the world in which we live.


Founded in 1941 by Gregory Ivy, first head of the Art Department at Woman?s College (now UNCG), the Weatherspoon Art Museum has grown from a university teaching gallery to a fully professional museum that is nationally recognized for its excellent collections and dynamic exhibition program. The Museum serves a broad audience of over 32,000 visitors annually, including UNCG students, faculty and staff; the Triad communities; and visitors from across the state, region, and nation; and an additional 24,000 students who take art history classes in the building.

In addition to a schedule of more than fifteen exhibitions each year, the Museum maintains a full roster of educational activities, publications, and outreach efforts as integral components of its overall program. The Weatherspoon was accredited by the American Association of Museums in 1995 and earned reaccreditation status in 2005.

From its inception, the museum has focused on building a permanent collection of modern and contemporary American art that is now considered one of the best in the Southeast. Numbering close to 6,000 works, the collection represents all major art movements from the beginning of the 20th century to the present. Willem de Kooning, Louise Bourgeois, Robert Rauschenberg, John Marin, Alexander Calder, Robert Henri, Cindy Sherman, Sol Le Witt, Louise Nevelson, Eva Hesse, and Andy Warhol are just a few of the major artists represented. Other highlights include the Dillard Collection of Art on Paper; the Etta and Claribel Cone Collection, which includes prints and bronzes by Henri Matisse; and the Lenoir C. Wright Collection of Japanese Prints.

The Weatherspoon?s exhibition calendar offers visitors the opportunity to see and learn directly from significant examples of modern and contemporary art. The schedule includes work by outstanding artists of national and international reputation; thematic exhibitions on timely aesthetic, cultural, and social issues; small focused exhibitions of emerging artists; selections from the permanent collection; UNCG MFA thesis shows and faculty biennials; and Falk Visiting Artist exhibitions, a collaborative program with the UNCG Department of Art.

The Museum's educational offerings include docent-led tours; gallery talks, lectures, and panel discussions; film and video series; after-hour social events; hands-on workshops; and Community Days. The Museum has enjoyed strong regional and national reviews, including those in Art Papers, Artforum, Art on Paper, and Art in America.

Research Collections

Educational Programs



    Lecture Halls

    Performance Areas


    University of North Carolina at Greensboro



    • Newsletters:


    Gift Shop

    Special Event Rental

    Group Tours