Frequently Asked Questions

What is Art in Embassies

Art in Embassies, a program within the U.S. Department of State, creates vital cross-cultural dialogue and mutual understanding through the visual arts and dynamic artist exchanges. Where is the art exhibited: The art is installed in the representational spaces of U.S. embassy residences,, chanceries, consulates, and annexes around the world.

When and how did Art in Embassies begin?

The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) initiated exhibitions of contemporary art for U.S. embassy residences in 1953. Ten years later President John F. Kennedy established ART in Embassies as an office within the U.S. Department of State.

How does AIE fulfill the mission of the U.S. Department of State?

AIE advances cultural diplomacy through artist exchanges and the presentation of works by outstanding American and international artists to audiences around the world.

Who selects the works of art?

A staff of curators guides the selection process.

How many artists are featured in Art in Embassies exhibitions each year?

Over 2,000 artists participate every year. AIE engages hundreds of new partners each year for its exhibitions and collections.

What is an AIE exhibition?

AIE exhibitions are temporary and include contemporary and historic works of art on loan from artists, museums, dealers, corporate collections, private collectors, and other partners. The length of an exhibition corresponds to the Ambassador’s term, approximately three years. The Department of State also houses a small collection of works that are regularly incorporated into temporary exhibitions.

What is a permanent collection?

AIE permanent collections include art by both American and host country artists and are permanent installed in U.S. embassies, consulates, and annexes built in recent years. Each collection serves as a bridge, celebrating the ties between American and local visual cultures. Collections existing work and site-specific,commissions.

Are lenders compensated in any way?

Artists/Lenders receive international exposure through events hosted by the embassy that are attended by prominent members of local communities. AIE acknowledges its partners by publishing multilingual exhibition text panels, catalogs and publications, and posting on our website and social media outlets. Many U.S. embassies feature exhibitions on their websites, extending access to thousands of host country, international, and U.S. citizens annually.

How do I become a lender?

To submit images for consideration, click on the Artist Registry’ link at the bottom of the screen and join our searchable artist registry. Due to the AIE’s limited staff resources and the volume of artists’ submissions received we are unable to respond individually, but we will contact you as opportunities arise.

How can I highlight my participation in Art in Embassies on my resume or in the press?

The exhibitions and collections are created, managed, insured, and shipped by Art in Embassies,U.S. Department of State. Please cite Art in Embassies in reference to your participation in an exhibition or collection.

What are Art in Embassies cultural exchanges?

Since 2002, Art in Embassies has sent over 100 U.S. artists as cultural envoys to local communities. Their participation in lectures, workshops, collaborative art projects, public events, and media interviews have made it possible to establish person-to-person relationships and discover common interests and concerns. Art in Embassies projects and programs engage local audiences in a cross-cultural exchange of ideas.

508 Compliance

Although we make every attempt to make all content of this website 508 Compliant to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1973, there may be instances where content that is not produced by the Department of State is not 508 compliant If you have the need to access content that is posted and is not 508 compliant, please email artinembassies@ state.gov and we will make every attempt to address and resolve the situation.

Shipping and Insurance Information

Art in Embassies (AIE) oversees all aspects of each project from negotiations and acquisitions through installation. AIE registrars are experts in the safe handling, packing, and shipment of fine art. They manage all exhibition logistics. Liaising worldwide with artists, collectors, museums, foundations, dealers, and professional fine art service companies, the registrars ensure that each work of art is safeguarded and insured from door to door.

AIE hires specialized fine art handlers to assemble, pack, crate, and safely ship works of art to and from our diplomatic facilities. Art in Embassies fully insures each shipment of art (door-to-door) and on location.

AIE complies with all shipping requirements from our lending partners. The terms of many loans, particularly those from museums, often include strict requirements pertaining to packing and crating, shipping, courier accompaniment, handling, placement, and light and humidity levels. Art in Embassies registrars ensure that lender requirements are upheld.

Registrars also make certain each work of art is fully documented and ready for shipment overseas. A typical exhibition requires a minimum of one month for consolidation, sometimes more if works are being collected from multiple locations throughout the United States.