10 Must-See Graphic Design Museums

A quick search will yield tons of blogs and other resources for graphic design inspiration.  What’s more, many references present detailed information on the history of graphic design and its most influential practitioners.  Still, where better to seek inspiration than a museum dedicated to preserving and facilitating the growth of graphic design?  The following 10 museums do just that, and should be bucket listed for every graphic designer.

1.  Museum of Arts and Design, New York

A museum so cool, even the building that houses it is a work of art!

madmuseum.org - Google Chrome_2012-08-06_12-04-27


2.  Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles

Keep abreast of recent and emerging artistic styles and innovations with a visit to this museum.

MOCA  The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles - Google Chrome_2012-08-06_12-46-15


3.  The Chicago Anatheum

This Windy City museum is totally devoted to architecture in design across many mediums.

The Chicago Athenaeum - Google Chrome_2012-08-06_12-48-02


4.  American Sign Museum, Cincinnati

Signs, signs, everywhere there’s signs … especially here.

American Sign Museum - Google Chrome_2012-08-06_12-49-30


5.  Institute of Contemporary Art, University of Pennsylvania

Based on the ability of art to influence and motivate, this museum’s exhibits are what graphic design is all about.

ICA - Institute of Contemporary Art - Philadelphia, PA - Google Chrome_2012-08-06_12-52-02


6.  YBCA, San Francisco

Exhibits feature works of art that have societal importance.

YBCA  Yerba Buena Center for the Arts - Google Chrome_2012-08-06_12-54-44


7.  San Francisco Museum of Craft and Design

Currently closed for a move but slated to re-open in fall 2012, pencil in a visit to this museum for a look at how design engages culture.

MCD - Home - Google Chrome_2012-08-06_12-59-12


8.  Museum of Design Atlanta

Dedicated to the study and celebration of all things design.  So are we!

MODA  Museum of Design Atlanta - Google Chrome_2012-08-06_13-01-00


9.  Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston

A collection of art in many different mediums, all of which can be used to inspire your next graphic design.

ICA  The Institute of Contemporary ArtBoston  Welcome - Google Chrome_2012-08-06_13-02-25


10.  Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum  in New York

A Smithsonian museum dedicated to all things design, including graphic design.

Home  Smithsonian Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum in New York - Google Ch_2012-08-06_13-04-46



  1. 10 Super Smart Museum Logos - October 25, 2012

    [...] especially coming from a museum that contains some of the world’s grandest works of art.  The museum should launch a design contest to choose its next logo; I guarantee they would get entries worthy [...]

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