The San Francisco art museum is a modern art museum with active resources for modern and contemporary art. It is the first museum, located on the west coast, completely devoted to the 20th century art. The museum which celebrated its 50th anniversary in 1985 is internationally recognized under the active leadership of Henry T. Hopkins.
Previously the museum was only known as San Francisco art museum but in 1975 the word ‘Modern’ has been added to its name making its sense more clear. From 1987 to 1997 John R. Lane was appointed as the director of the museum. In January 1995 the San Francisco art museum introduced a new facility in the burgeoning South of Market district, designed by famous Swiss architect Mario Botta. Later on from June 1998 to August 2001, David A. Ross was appointed as the director of the museum.
The permanent collection of the museum includes 22 seminal pieces by Ellsworth Kelly, 14 important work pieces by Robert Rauschenberg, René Magritte’s Les Valeurs personelles, two important pieces of late paintings by Piet Mondrian, Composition with Red, Yellow and Blue (1935, 1942) and New York City 2, a lead airplane structured sculpture by Anselm Kiefer titled Melancholia (1990–91) and Marcel Duchamp’s Iconic Fountain (1917/1964). After David Ross, Neal Benezra became the director of the museum in 2002. In 2004 the museum earned record name for being a museum with almost 800,000 total visitors with 36% increase in its membership.
The San Francisco art museum has a wide collection of world wide items. Its Asian art branch collection holds item spanning 6,0000 years. The collection includes above16,000 objects ranging from tiny jades to monumental sculptures, paintings, porcelains and ceramics, lacquers, furniture, textiles, arms and armor, puppets and basketry. Most of the objects in the museum are a part of the donation by Avery Brundage, a Chicago industrialist. The 2nd and 3rd floors of the museum have a huge collection of more than 2 5,000 artworks. The museum has separate collection galleries which are divided into seven geographic regions. They are South Asia, the Persian World and West Asia, Southeast Asia, the Himalayas and the Tibetan Buddhist World, Korea, China and Japan.