The Art + Ideas of Our Time
Cleveland’s Museum of Contemporary Art (moCa) plays an urgent and exciting role in the city’s cultural landscape. As a non-collecting institution and the region’s only contemporary art museum, moCa is ever-changing, introducing new exhibitions three times a year to create fresh experiences for visitors each season. Since its founding in 1968, moCa has presented the works of more than 2,000 artists, often through artists’ first solo shows.
For more than 50 years, moCa has been both conduit and catalyst for anyone seeking creativity and inspiration, bringing the art and ideas of our time to Cleveland and the region at large. moCa was the first in the area to exhibit the works of vanguard artists such as Roy Lichtenstein and Andy Warhol. We continue in that tradition, featuring the work of emerging and established regional, national, and international artists.
Unique and dynamic, moCa Cleveland advances the visual art of our time. We challenge, inspire, and teach a wide range of audiences in order to push the boundaries of innovation, creativity and exploration through exhibitions, publications, and programming.
moCa Cleveland offers a fun and friendly place to fuel imagination, cultivate creativity, and discover new ways to see, think, and share. The museum’s changing exhibitions provide a continuous stream of new art, inspiring ideas and exploration. Each season, moCa Cleveland creates programs based on curiosity, problem solving, interaction, and play. The museum provides resources and open-ended activities that encourage collaboration and interaction, from in-gallery activities to hands- on art projects.
moCa Cleveland was founded in 1968 by Marjorie Talalay, Nina Sundell and Agnes Gund as The New Gallery to showcase contemporary art and introduce it to Clevelanders with the works of cutting edge artists such as Christo, Jasper Johns, and Laurie Anderson. In 1974, the New Gallery became a non-profit, and in 1984, changed its name to Cleveland Center for Contemporary Art. In 2002, the organization’s name was changed to Museum of Contemporary Art (moCa) Cleveland. In 2006, moCa announced relocation plans, and in 2011, broke ground for its new building.
In the fall of 2012, moCa’s new $27.2M building became the anchor for Cleveland’s Uptown district in the iconic and culturally rich University Circle neighborhood. Often referred to as a “gem,” the building’s innovative, hexagonal space transforms as needed to accommodate growing exhibitions, programs, and audiences. It’s also in good company, adjacent to neighboring universities, medical institutions, cultural centers, and a host of Cleveland schools
The first structure in the United States designed by Farshid Moussavi Architecture (FMA), moCa’s building became an instant icon representing Cleveland’s revitalization and growth. It’s been cited by The New York Times, Fodor’s, and Architectural Digest as a symbol of the city’s renaissance.
Moussavi’s design also demonstrates that a museum expansion need not be large in scale to be ambitious. Devised for both environmental and fiscal sustainability, the design is technically inventive, visually stunning and highly practical. In 2015, moCa’s building received LEED® Silver certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.
The four-story, nearly 34,000-square-foot structure rises from a six- sided base to a four-sided top, producing an array of geometric shapes presented via the building’s exterior, which is sheathed in panels of reflective black stainless steel. Its interior includes galleries, spaces for social functions, and Learning Labs conducive to educational and artmaking opportunities.
In 2019, moCa celebrated our 50th anniversary with the launch of the OPEN HOUSE initiatives—a museum-wide commitment to ensure we are welcoming in every sense. In addition to disintegrating economic barriers with free daily admission, we’ve rethought how we work with a focus on diversity, inclusion, and accessibility to make the museum more engaging.
In June 2015, moCa’s board of directors and staff adopted a new strategic plan for the institution. The aspirational roadmap culminated in moCa’s 50th Anniversary in 2018, and amplifies the values that have long informed and animated the museum’s place in the world, providing specific goals to frame the future.
moCa aims to be a vanguard institution dedicated to providing visitors with an experience of discovery, while balancing cosmopolitan flair with a commitment to being rooted in Cleveland, and embracing an enterprising approach to its programming and operations.
moCa’s Board of Directors is a committed group of community leaders partners who provide governance, targeted enterprise, and financial support.
moCa’s staff includes 27 full-time employees or fellows, and 8-12 interns annually. Click here for the full list.
Click here for job and internship information and applications.