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Public Programs

Pu​blic Programs at SAM

There's something happening and you don't want to miss it. So jump in—ask questions, offer opinions, paint, draw, sketch, learn, listen, dance, tour, meet the artists, perform. Find the thing that's right up your alley, or try something entirely new.​

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SAM Creates

SAM Creates SAM Creates

These workshops provide a forum for artists to explain the philosophies underlying their work and for you to delve into the artistic, practical, or quirky processes at work in your daily lives.​​​​​​

    SAM Films

    For more than 30 years, SAM has offered some of the most innovative film programming in the country. SAM screens films that explore a diverse cross-section of artists and genres.

    Night Heat: The 41st Film Noir Series

    September 27 – December 6, 2018

    Still from the film Lilith

    Who can sleep when the night is a fever of perfume and gun smoke, the wails of saxophones and police sirens, when acting on impulse is better than a dream? Called "the best series in Seattle film history" by Charles R. Cross, this is the world’s longest-running film noir celebration.

    The Magic Lantern Of Ingmar Bergman

    January 10 – March 14, 2019

    Still from Passion of Anna

    SAM and the Nordic Museum continue our centennial celebration of Swedish writer-director Ingmar Bergman. Marshalling superb actors like Liv Ullmann, Max Von Sydow, Bibi Andersson and Ingrid Bergman, and the Oscar-winning cinematography of Sven Nykvist, Bergman explores deep existential questions, and the abiding mystery and beauty of life.

    SAM Films are generously supported by the Bagley and Virginia Wright Endowment and The Brooks and Suzanne Ragen Film and Education Endowment. Additional support provided by David and Catherine Eaton Skinner and Aron Michael Thompson.

      SAM Performs


      SAM Performs features a wide range of styles, genres, and disciplines. Performances are often accompanied by discussions among artistic collaborators. 

      Art of Jazz

      Art of Jazz

      ​Every Second Thursday of the Month
      Hear some of the best local and national jazz live in the Brotman Forum, plus sign up to win fabulous prizes from KNKX.

      ​Art of Jazz is presented in collaboration with Earshot Jazz; sponsors are Earshot Jazz and KNKX 88.5.

      Tea Ceremony Demonstrations

      Tea Ceremony

      ​Third Thursdays, 5​:30 pm & Third Sundays, 2:30 pm. Note: there are no tea ceremonies in January, August, or December.

      Experience chado, "the W​ay of Tea," in the superbly crafted teahouse in the museum galleries at the Seattle Art Museum. Since the 16th century, chado has provided artistic inspiration and spiritual reflection. This time-honored living art brings a fresh paradigm for thoughtful and harmonious living.​​​​

      Dueling bands. A silent dance party at the top of the escalators. A lone trumpet wailing in the contemporary galleries. Art making in every corner. Spoken word throwdowns in front of oil paintings. Tap and burlesque and contemporary dance. The only guarantee: no two Remixes are the same.


      Held three times a year (in the summer, get down in the Olympic Sculpture Park). Ages 21+.


      Program Sponsor

      Delta Airlines

      Supporting Sponsor
      Thompson Seattle

      Media Sponsors

      The Stranger


        SAM TALKS

        SAM Talks

        A timely and innovative forum that addresses pressing issues in art and society, SAM Talks bring together some of the most compelling thinkers on a given cultural subject, and include lectures by artists, critics, curators, and scholars related to the work in SAM’s special exhibitions, First Friday Lectures, and Art + Environment Panel discussions.

        Conversations with Curators

        SAM Curators

        January – June
        6:30 pm Happy Hour, 7 pm Lecture

        Hear directly from the engaging creative forces behind SAM’s exhibitions and installations as our curators share rich stories about art, history, geography, culture and more. This popular members-only lecture series always packs the house.

        Stay tuned for more information on how to purchase member tickets.

        Not a member? Join today to take advantage of these unique conversations.

          SAM TOURS


          Tour times and topics vary throughout the year. Tours are FREE with museum admission.

          A Closer Look: Highlights from SAM's Collection
          View creatively installed galleries and discuss outstanding artwork from SAM’S collections.

          In Focus Gallery Talks
          These gallery discussions focus on a single gallery, allowing the visitor to experience works of art in-depth. Topics rotate regularly. 30 minutes.

          My Favorite Things
          My Favorite Things tours bring some of the most opinionated, brilliant and fascinating artists, cultural producers and community figures into the galleries to discuss their favorite works of art. 30 minutes.

          Special Exhibitions
          Explore the special exhibitions at the Seattle Art Museum on these tours designed to illuminate exhibition themes and present diverse perspectives on the art on view. 60 minutes.

          Art Beyond Sight Tours​
          The Art Beyond Sight program provides regular tours of the museum’s collection to visitors with low or no vision. Tours are held at all three SAM locations and are free with advance registration. Private tours are also available upon request. For more information, please email us.​​

          Upcoming Art Beyond Sight Tours​​​​​



          View Calendar​​​​

          School Tours​

          Are you an educator? You can find school tour information here.​​​​​​


          Gardner Center

          Offering dynamic public programs at the Asian Art Museum, the Gardner Center for Asian Art and Ideas hosts events to ​explore the vast diversity of Asia, its presence in the world, and the wide range of artistic expression. From history and culture to global health and urban design, we exchange ideas about challenging contemporary issues. We also invite you to experience a range of artistic expression related to Asia.

          Learn More​​​​

          SUMMER AT SAM

          Park Season

          When the rain goes on hiatus and the sun comes out to glint off the Puget Sound—that's when you know, it's summer season at the Olympic Sculpture Park! Get outside, play, picnic, and create. SAM presents an entire season packed full of activities and performances that combine visual art, music, and community. The summer programs feature a diverse range of bands and art activities that explore place-making, cultural confluences, and learning from our local environment. All Summer at SAM programs are free, open to the public, and all-ages.

          Park Season

          Catch live music, dance amidst art, enjoy food from Seattle’s best food trucks, and grab a drink from TASTE. When you’re ready to get creative, take part in DIY art projects and take opinionated tours of the park. Kids and their grownups will love our Summer at SAM play space and art-making activities. Take it easy and sprawl out under monumental sculptures like Alexander Calder’s The Eagle or take a quiet walk with breathtaking views of the mountains and water.

          Park Season

          Saturdays are active days at the park. Join us for free outdoor yoga with 8 Limbs Yoga Centers at 9 and 10:30 am. From 11 am to 1 pm, stop by to get hands-on and learn more about local artists’ practices. Park tours start at 1 pm and you can keep moving with Zumba from 2 to 3 pm.
          FREE and open to the public!

          Presented by


            Winter in the Park

            Winter Weekends

            The Olympic Sculpture Park is open 365 days a year, and no matter the season, Seattle loves its monumental sculptures and dramatic views of the Olympic Mountains and Puget Sound. This year, our programs connecting you to the park’s collection get you moving, making, and thinking year-round! 

            Winter in the Park: Art Encounters

            Art Encounters

            Become part of an artist's creative process during our Art Encounters, 7 pm on select Fridays in January and February. Get inspired by learning about meaningful artistic practices and participating in experiences that respond to the Olympic Sculpture Park and the Seattle region.

            This year, SAM is thrilled to collaborate with the upcoming yəha exhibition at King Street Station and support the growth of contemporary Native artists living in the Pacific Northwest. 

            SAM Lights

            SAM Lights

            Light up your winter with SAM’s free program connecting all ages to art and the environment. Experience the wonder of the iconic sculptures lit with the glow of luminaria. Art making, live music, hot beverages, and sweet treats will offer everyone a way to enjoy the glow of the park.