The museum houses a collection of more than 50,000 pieces spanning 5,000 years, with significant holdings in Asian art, American and European painting and decorative arts, 19th- and 20th-century art, works on paper, Asian textiles, and traditional works from Africa, Oceania, and the Americas. Exhibitions are displayed in a series of galleries that surround courtyards, taking advantage of natural light and Hawai‘i’s climate.
The museum has three satellite locations:
Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art is housed in Shangri La, the Honolulu home of Doris Duke. Built in 1937, the museum exhibits an extensive collection of Islamic art intended to promote the study and understanding of Islamic arts and cultures. Tours are offered regularly Wednesday through Saturday starting at 9:00 a.m., 10:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. Tickets must be reserved in advance. The entire tour experience lasts approximately two and a half hours with one and a half hours on site at Shangri La. Access is by shuttle from the Honolulu Museum of Art
Spalding House is a satellite location, featuring galleries of art, a permanent installation of David Hockney's L'Enfant et les sortilèges, a café, pop-up gift shop, and sculpture-filled gardens overlooking Diamond Head and Honolulu. A single admission applies to both. Spalding House is located at 2411 Makiki Heights Dr. The collection includes works by such artists as Satoru Abe, Toshiko Takaezu, Deborah Butterfield and George Rickey. Spalding House was formerly The Contemporary Museum.
Honolulu Museum of Art at First Hawaiian Center is located downtown, at 999 Bishop St. This location is committed to presenting exhibitions that highlight the work of Hawai‘i artists and Hawai‘i-based works of art, showcasing Hawai‘i’s emerging contemporary artists. First Hawaiian Center's gallery is open during bank hours and is free to the public year round.