Contemporary Art

Since its opening in 1844, the Wadsworth Atheneum has presented artists of its own time, from Thomas Cole and Frederic Church to Salvador Dalí, Piet Mondrian, Andy Warhol, and Sol LeWitt.

The Contemporary art collection encompasses works created from 1945 to the present with strong examples of Abstract Expressionism, Color Field painting, Pop art, Conceptual art, and recent movements in painting, sculpture, photography, and video.

Supplemented by acquisitions from its groundbreaking MATRIX exhibition program—launched in 1975—the collection includes work by many past MATRIX artists, such as John Baldessari, Duane Hanson, Christian Jankowski, Ellsworth Kelly, Glenn Ligon, Lee Lozano, Robert Mapplethorpe, Cindy Sherman, Lorna Simpson, and William Wegman.

Search the Contemporary Art Collection
Use this link to search for objects in the Contemporary Art collection. Please note: digitizing artworks is an ongoing process, so this search is not representative of the museum’s entire collection. You can identify objects that are currently on view via the Object Description box, in the “Currently on view?” field.

Updates to our database are made weekly, so if you plan to visit the museum to see a specific work of art please call the Information Desk in advance of your visit at (860) 838-4100, Wednesday through Sunday from 9:30am to 4:30pm to ensure availability.