Past Exhibitions

The Polaroid Project: At the Intersection of Art and Technology

Through June 21, 2020

In its heyday, Polaroid and its products were loved by millions of amateurs and embraced by countless professionals.

image of Polaroid camera

The Polaroid Project: At the Intersection of Art and Technology Part II Online

Available online through Dec 31, 2020

In the spirit of innovation and ingenuity so central to Polaroid, we’re pleased to present The Polaroid Project, Part II online.

The MIT Moderns


Explore modernist graphic design through the important contributions of the MIT Office of Design Services in the 1960s-1980s, one of the most innovative design practices of its time in the country. 

Gestural Engineering: The Sculpture of Arthur Ganson

Gestural Engineering: The Sculpture of Arthur Ganson


Press a pedal or turn a crank and you’ll put Ganson’s machines into motion.

In Motion exhibition: video that transforms into 3D sculpture

In Motion


Explore how motion, an essential element of our world, can be harnessed and deployed in a variety of ways. 

Photograph of Herreshoff boat

Lighter, Stronger, Faster: The Herreshoff Legacy

Through May 1, 2021

Visit this groundbreaking exhibition tracing the legacy of influential naval engineer Nathanael Greene Herreshoff.

Image of dancers in a Tangible Media Group project

Making Digital Tangible

Through August 31, 2020

Hiroshi Ishii, founder and director of the Tangible Media Group at the MIT Media Lab and influential visionary of Human-Computer Interaction (HCI), has spent the last quarter century pursuing his quest to make the digital world tangible.

Etel Mittag-Fodor, Ball and Bowl, 1928.

Arresting Fragments: Object Photography at the Bauhaus

Through September 1, 2019

In celebration of the Bauhaus centennial, the Museum presents Arresting Fragments: Object Photography at the Bauhaus, featuring 90 prints from Bauhaus Archive, Berlin, collections.

Drawing, Designing, Thinking: 150 Years of Teaching Architecture at MIT

Through August 25, 2019

To mark its 150th anniversary, the MIT Museum, in collaboration with the MIT Department of Architecture, presented a dynamic exhibition exploring architecture, education, and design through the lens of student work.  

Right Now: Polaroid's Invention of Instant Photography

Through August 2019

See a rare large-format camera from the museum’s Polaroid collection.

Projects and Prototypes: MIT Student Work

Through April 2019

Inventive projects and kinetic sculpture by MIT students exemplify the Institute’s legendary values of creativity, ingenuity, and practical problem solving.

Imagined Communities: Photographs by Mila Teshaieva

Through March 3, 2019

This retrospective of photographer Mila Teshaieva’s multi-year work on constructed identities, is drawn from three recent projects in which she interrogates the idea of nation as an "imagined community” and a political construct that is often in conflict with private and public memory. 

Celebrating the 50th anniversary of the MIT Center for Advanced Visual Studies

Through January 30, 2019

To mark the 50th anniversary of the opening of the MIT Center for Advanced Visual Studies (CAVS), the MIT Museum plans an historical overview through selected works by CAVS research fellows, students and professors.   

The Beautiful Brain: The Drawings of Santiago Ramón y Cajal

Through December 31, 2018

An unprecedented opportunity to see and compare the beautifully rendered images of renowned scientist Santiago Ramón y Cajal (1852-1934), with contemporary visualizations of the brain created by neuroscientists at MIT and other universities.

Energy Lines

Through September 2018

Energy Lines was exhibited at The MIT Museum Studio and Compton Gallery, and is the work of the class of STS.035 Exhibiting Science. 

Minsky Arm, created by Marvin Minsky.

Robots and Beyond: Exploring Artificial Intelligence at MIT

Through August 12, 2018

Robots and Beyond highlights the transformational MIT robotics research that occurred from the late 1950s onward, shaping and defining the field of Artificial Intelligence today.

György Kepes Photographs II

Through July 15, 2018

György Kepes (1906-2001) was an artistic innovator, theorist, and educator whose work and ideas profoundly influenced art and design practice in the second half of the twentieth century. 

Big Bang Data

Through April 1, 2018

Big Bang Data explores the intersections of culture, technology, and society in the digital age.

György Kepes Photographs

György Kepes Photographs I

Through March 5, 2018

György Kepes (1906-2001) was one of the most influential art practitioners, educators and writers of the twentieth century, and his work as a painter and art teacher has been celebrated in both exhibitions and scholarship.

Herreshoff Collection Highlights

Through February 22, 2018

See highlights of ship portraits and plans from the Hart Nautical Collection's Herreschoff archives, on view in the hallway to the left of the second-floor visitor services desk.

Recreating Edgerton

Through February 22, 2018

See artist Jorge Otero-Pailos's "Space-Time 1964/2014," a C-print documenting his 2014 re-enactment of Harold Edgerton's iconic 1964 photograph "Bullet Through Apple." Otero-Pailos worked with MIT Museum staff using Edgerton's original equipment.

Holography: Dimensions of Light

Through February 2018

View and interact with selected works from the MIT Museum’s comprehensive holography collection in Holography: Dimensions of Light.

The Enemy by Karim Ben Khelifa

Through December 31, 2017 [SOLD OUT]

The Enemy by Karim Ben Khelifa, a groundbreaking interactive Virtual Reality (VR) exhibition and immersive experience, makes its North American premiere at the MIT Museum. 

Projects and Prototypes: MIT Student Work

Through April 2019

Inventive projects and kinetic sculpture by MIT students exemplify the Institute’s legendary values of creativity, ingenuity, and practical problem solving.

Images of Discovery: Communicating Science through Photography

Through September 10, 2017

Experience photography as a tool for communicating about—and inspiring a passion for—science and technology.

The Diamond Trace: Kimberley, South Africa in Photographs by Patrick Tourneboeuf

Through September 3, 2017

In The Diamond Trace, French photographer Patrick Tourneboeuf examines the aftermath of a city that grew after the discovery of a big diamond, and was all but abandoned when the gems became scarce.

Cosmic Bell: Exploring Quantum Weirdness

Through September 3, 2017

Cosmic Bell and its integrated program is an innovative experiment in public engagement with complex science topics. The exhibition explores the Cosmic Bell Experiment, an international, research project led by MIT physicists David Kaiser, Alan Guth, and Andrew Friedman.

Rapid and Deployable: An Experiment in Fast Construction

Through August 30, 2017

Through one student project, explore how architects, designers and artists are redefining practices, pioneering techniques, and experimenting with material properties.

Désiré Despradelle, Perspective detail of the Beacon of Progress, c. 1899.

Grazia Toderi and Désiré Despradelle: Spectacular Cities

September 28, 2016 - March 19, 2017

Despite careers separated by a century, architect Désiré Despradelle (1862–1912) and artist Grazia Toderi (b. 1963) share a conception of the city and urban architecture as spectacle.

Imagining New Technology

Imagining New Technology: Building MIT in Cambridge

Through September 4, 2016

A collaboratively built 3-D model and rarely seen architectural drawings, photographs, and objects celebrate the centennial of MIT in Cambridge.