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The CMA Is Open!

The CMA is open to the public with free admission through June 25 courtesy of BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina. 

The CMA is implementing cleaning and physical distancing practices to safeguard staff and visitors. We continue to adhere to CDC recommendations and government directives and look forward to welcoming visitors safely back to the museum! Learn more below.

Hear from Executive Director Della Watkins in this video.

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Reserve Your Tickets

Capacities are limited, so advance tickets are recommended. 

Reserve your ticket here

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Safety FAQs

Are capacities limited?

Yes. In order to allow for safe physical distancing, the CMA is limiting the number of tickets sold each hour and the number of guests who may enter any one gallery at the same time.

Are advance tickets required?

Advance tickets are strongly suggested due to limited gallery capacity. Tickets are available in hourly time slots, and guests may enter any time during the hour. Advance tickets must be purchased at least two hours ahead of entry time. 

What should I bring?

Your mobile device and headphones, for access to digital maps, brochures, and multimedia TAP tours. You can also print out your map at home. Download the map here.

Your credit or debit card. At this time debit and credit cards are preferred for payment. Cash transactions are discouraged, and Apple Pay is not available. 

Your face covering. For the safety of staff and guests, everyone over the age of two is required to wear a face covering inside the museum. If you do not have a face covering, ask at the Welcome Desk and we will provide you with one. Limit one per visitor.

How do I enter the museum and check in?

Enter the museum via Main Street. Boyd Plaza is currently closed.

At this time debit and credit cards are preferred for payment.Cash transactions are discouraged, and Apple Pay is not available. 

Brochures, maps, and multimedia TAP tours are available online. Please bring your own mobile device (and headphones for TAP) to enjoy these resources during your visit.

Do I need to wear a face mask / covering?

Yes. For the safety of staff and guests, everyone over the age of two is required to wear a face covering inside the museum. If you do not have a face covering, ask at the Welcome Desk and we will provide you with one. Limit one per visitor.

What will the galleries look like?

Capacities for each gallery are posted as you enter. Gallery Attendants are present to answer any questions and enforce physical distancing.

Is the entire museum open?

Most of it is! Interactives are closed or limited and Boyd Plaza is closed until further notice. The second-floor collection galleries are open, as is the Guignard Gallery. Featured exhibition Black Is Beautiful opens on Saturday, June 27. The Cross Hatch is currently closed to the public.

What visitor amenities are unavailable?

The coat closet is unavailable at this time. Here’s what you need to know about what you bring with you: Bags and items larger than 14.5” x 17” x 8” are not permitted in the galleries and cannot be checked, so at this time it’s best not to bring these to the museum. Smaller bags, including backpacks, are permitted in the galleries. To avoid accidentally bumping into art, backpacks may not be worn on your back; they must be carried by hand (below the waist) or worn on the front of your body. Umbrellas are not permitted in the galleries, but umbrella stands sit outside the gallery doors should you have one with you. 

Drinking fountains are not available at this time, either. Beverages will be available for purchase in the CMA Shop.

Are there limits on group sizes?

Groups are limited to eight or fewer at check in. The museum is not offering group tours at this time due to physical distancing requirements. Each gallery has a limited capacity, which is posted as you enter.

What cleaning measures are in place?

The museum has elevated disinfecting efforts throughout the building. Restrooms are available to museum guests only and are sanitized hourly. The CMA follows guidelines from the CDC and DHEC for facility cleaning.

 

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Where to Visit Us:

1515 Main Street
at the intersection with Hampton Street in downtown Columbia

Where to Call Us:

803-799-2810
Phones answered 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. daily

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Hours of Operation

Open 10:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. five days a week. Last ticket sold at 4:30 p.m. Galleries close at 5:00 p.m.

Day Hours
Sunday 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Monday

Closed.
Staff is on-site and available to answer questions. Contact Us

Tuesday Closed.
Staff is on-site and available to answer questions. Contact Us
Wednesday 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Thursday 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Open until 8 p.m. on the first Thursday of the month
Friday 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Saturday 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.

 

Admission

Category Cost
Museum Members FREE - Join today!
Adults $10 general admission
Seniors
(65 and over)
$8 general admission
Military $8 general admission
College Students $5 general admission
Youth (7 - 18) $5 general admission
Children
(6 and under)
FREE - Does not apply to groups

Free admission on First Thursdays sponsored by BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina. Does not include group tours.

Through Bank of America's Museums on Us program, visitors gain free admission during the first full weekend of each month when they present an active Bank of America, Merrill, or Bank of America Private Bank debit or credit card or employee ID card with their photo ID.

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Visitor Guidelines

Bag Lockers & Coat Check

The coat closet is unavailable at this time. Here’s what you need to know about what you bring with you: Bags and items larger than 14.5” x 17” x 8” are not permitted in the galleries and cannot be checked, so at this time it’s best not to bring these to the museum. Smaller bags, including backpacks, are permitted in the galleries. To avoid accidentally bumping into art, backpacks may not be worn on your back; they must be carried by hand (below the waist) or worn on the front of your body. Umbrellas are not permitted in the galleries, but umbrella stands sit outside the gallery doors should you have one with you. 

Strollers & Wheelchairs

We recommend that you bring your own stroller or wheelchair if needed, but complimentary strollers and wheelchairs are available on a first-come, first-served basis. They are cleaned after each use. Please visit the Welcome Desk to check out a stroller or wheelchair. If you need assistance while using a wheelchair, please bring a caregiver to help you.

Art

Special care is taken at all times to preserve the art on view. For this reason we ask that you refrain from touching or getting too close to the artwork, display cases, and platforms.

Photography and Mobile Devices

We encourage you to take photos and share your CMA experience with friends! Photography is allowed in all public spaces, and in the galleries except where otherwise noted. Flashes, tripods, monopods, video cameras, and selfie sticks are not permitted throughout the museum. 

We ask that you refrain from talking on the phone while in the galleries and place your phone on silent. 

We also encourage you to use either your own mobile device or one of the available iPads at the visitor services desk to take advantage of our free multimedia TAP tours and online brochures. If you have any questions about photography or these tours, ask at the Welcome Desk.

Professional and Commercial Photography

The CMA is a public organization focused on serving our visitors. While we are happy to be the backdrop for life’s celebrations, we need to be sure that photography does not interfere with the visitor’s art experience. To that end, professional and commercial photography (ie photo shoots) are not permitted in the CMA.

Media photographers and videographers should contact our communications team.

Photography on Boyd Plaza is always free and open to all; however, Boyd Plaza is a city park and is therefore closed until further notice.

Restroom Policy

Multi-stall restrooms are located on each floor. Single-stall restrooms, including a family restroom, are located off of the Main Street Lobby.

The CMA welcomes gender diversity. All visitors are welcome to use the restroom that best fits their identity. We ask that no one be stared at, questioned, or asked to leave. Thank you for making the museum safe, inclusive, and accessible for everyone.

Sketching in the Galleries

Sketching, in pencil only, is permitted in all the second floor collection galleries of the Columbia Museum of Art for non-commercial purposes, provided that the following rules are followed. Sketching is also permitted in most special exhibitions; please inquire at the Welcome Desk about current exhibitions and guidelines.

  • Paper or sketchbooks should not exceed 14 x 17 inches. Easels are not permitted.
  • Never point at a work using your pencil or any other object. Please do not touch the works for any reason.
  • A reasonable distance must be maintained from the work to allow a clear view for others who may wish to observe the work.
  • During times of high volume visitation, sketching may be restricted. Sketching is permitted only in locations that do not obstruct an entrance or exit, do not compromise the safety or security of the art on view and/or other CMA visitors, and do not obstruct the view of the art.
Food and Drink

Food, drink, and chewing gum are allowed in the museum's public areas, but are not permitted in any enclosed galleries.

Lost and Found

For lost items, stop by the Welcome Desk or call 803-799-2810.

Code of Conduct

The Columbia Museum of Art is dedicated to providing a safe, inclusive, and welcoming visitor experience for everyone. 

See the full code of conduct here.

CMA Photography

Photography and videography may be taken and used for CMA promotional purposes. By visiting the CMA and its events, all persons have consented, released the CMA of liability, and waived all rights to royalties.

 

Policy on Service and Emotional Support Animals

Service Animals
The CMA complies with all ADA requirements and accepts service animals in the museum as defined by the ADA in 2010.

Types of Service Dogs may include, but are not limited to:

  • Guide Dog
  • Mobility Aid Dog
  • Seizure Alert Dog
  • PTSD Dog
  • Hearing Alert Dog
  • Diabetes Alert Dog
  • Migraine Alert Dog
  • Narcolepsy Alert Dog
  • Seizure Response Dog
  • Psychiatric Service Dog

Emotional Support Animals
The CMA does not allow Emotional Support Animals (ESA) on site. Emotional Support Animals or Comfort Animals are often used as part of a medical treatment plan or as therapy animals, but are not considered service animals under the ADA.

Types of Emotional Support Animals may include, but are not limited to:

  • Companionship animals
  • Animals to relieve loneliness
  • Animals to help with depression
  • Animals to help with anxiety
  • Animals to help with certain phobias 

Frequently Asked Questions about Service Animals and the ADA

  • Visit

    1515 Main Street
    Columbia, SC 29201

  • Call

    Visitor Services: 803-799-2810
    CMA Shop: 803-343-2159
    Group Tours: 803-343-2163
    Membership: 803-343-2198

  • Mail

    P.O. Box 2068
    Columbia, SC 29202

  • Ship

    1512 Assembly Street
    Columbia, SC 29201

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The CMA has a brand new look!

Extensive renovations provide more galleries, more studios, more spaces for programs, and a new entrance on Main Street.

See How We Did It

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Disclaimer: The Columbia Museum of Art is taking rigorous precautions to ensure the health and well-being of CMA visitors and staff related to COVID-19. Everyone must practice personal safety during their visit. Visitors to the CMA and Boyd Plaza are assuming all risks associated with exposure to COVID-19.