Visitor Guidelines

General Visitor Policies 

  • Food and drink are not allowed in the galleries or classrooms.
  • Please do not touch the artwork. Even clean hands can damage works of art.
  • Please use only pencils in the galleries; markers and pens are not permitted. RISD students interested in copying works in wet media should request permission.
  • Strollers are permitted; please use elevators when traveling between the floors. Backpack child carriers are not permitted.
  • Items larger than 11” x 15” must  be left in our coatroom. Free lockers are available.
  • Smoking and e-cigarettes are not allowed.
  • Service animals as defined by state and federal regulations are welcome in the Museum. Therapy or comfort animals are not allowed.
  • Tickets are non-refundable.


Group Guidelines 

Groups wishing to visit the Museum may book a guided tour for up to 60 visitors. Guided tours must be scheduled at least four weeks in advance.

  • Grades 6 and above - One chaperone is required for every 15 students. (However, one chaperone for every 10 students is recommended.) 
  • Grades 5 and below - One chaperone is required for every 10 students.
  • Age 5 and under - One chaperone is required for every 5 students.
  • Chaperones should notify the Museum educator of situations regarding student health or safety (i.e., medical problems, potential behavior issues, etc.) prior to the start of the visit.
  • Touching the artwork is not allowed. Chaperones should make sure students do not get too close to works of art - touching can be accidental or deliberate.
  • Chaperones can help students stay focused on discussions and activities run by the Museum educator.
  • When moving between galleries, chaperones help the Museum educator gather materials, line students up, and ensure that students leave the gallery space in a quiet and orderly manner.
  • If students are taking notes or making sketches, only pencils can be used in the galleries. No wet media, including pens or markers, are allowed.
  • A chaperone must accompany any student visiting the restroom.


Photography Guidelines 

  • Photography is allowed in Museum galleries. Flash photography, tripods, and selfie sticks are not permitted. Tripod and monopod use is allowed by special permission only.
  • Video and film projects can sometimes be accommodated in the galleries. RISD Faculty and students should see these guidelines for more information. All non-RISD inquiries, please contact the Museum press office at 401-709-8524.
  • The Museum occasionally documents its visitors. The resulting images and recordings may be used to support the educational, promotional, and development missions of the RISD Museum.
  • We support open digital access. We want to our collection, scholarship, and interpretive content to be accessed, distributed, and reused by everyone. [link to collection research]
  • The Museum supports the protection of intellectual property, and the right to privacy by adhering to all applicable law and asks it's visitors to do the same.


Research Guidelines

The RISD Museum supports artistic and academic research at RISD and beyond. Collaboration with students, artists, and scholars is fundamental to how art and design is interpreted and understood. 

Study Centers

The Costume and Textiles collection and the Prints, Drawings and Photographs collection offer weekly opportunities for students, faculty, and researchers to view objects upon request and learn about the collection with curatorial guidance. Advance notice is requested. To begin, we encourage you to search the collection.

Costume and Textiles

Donghia Study Center, 6th floor
Fridays during fall and spring semesters,  11 am - 1 pm

Request a viewing


Prints, Drawings, and Photographs

Siskind Center / Minskoff Center, Chace Center, 4th floor
Wednesdays and Fridays during fall and spring semesters, 10 am - 12:30 pm

Request a viewing

Projects and Programs

Propose ways to activate our collections and explore artistic materials and processes.
Learn more. 

Submit an application

Wet-Media Copying (RISD students only)

With permission, RISD students may use wet media to copy works of art in the galleries. Acceptable media include gouache, acrylic paint, and watercolor. The Museum has a limited number of easels; students may not bring their own easels.

Request permission