The Peabody Essex Museum began in 1799, when the charter of the East India Marine Society called for the establishment of a "cabinet of natural and artificial curiosities,” and members of the Society began bringing home objects from Asia, Africa, Oceania, India, the northwest coast of America, and elsewhere.
Today's collection includes 1.8 million works from cultures around the world: paintings, sculpture, photography, drawings, textiles, architecture and decorative objects, dating from the 1700s to the present.
Considerable architectural interest is found in the National Historic Landmark East India Marine Hall (1825); the Moshe Safdie-designed glass and brick building expansion; and Yin Yu Tang, a 200-year-old Chinese (Qing Dynasty) sixteen-bedroom house, reconstructed on the Peabody Essex Museum site.
Please check the museum website for updated exhibition information. Scheduling may have been modified as a result of the temporary museum closure.
250 artworks span time from 10,000 years ago to the present
Sound, song, and site heighten awareness of space, emotion, and memory
In 54 short videos artists from across Asia explore hope
More than 100 photographs from African diasporic culture
Site-specific 58-foot-long wall drawing and inspirational works from PEM’s collection
Live bats and PEM collection objects, contemporary artworks, and pop culture items
Imagine our ideal future world
200+ objects explore the artistic traditions of Ethiopia from their origins to today
More than 40 of the most influential glass artists from the 20th century to today
50+ books explore decades of creative approaches to interpreting the novel visually
Paintings, posters, photographs, stage apparatuses, costumes, film, publications and other objects