Visitor Guidelines


Don’t Touch

Please do not touch the art (including indoor and outdoor sculpture). Touching works of art can damage the surface over time. Please remain at least 12 inches away from the surface of the artwork and do not lean on walls or display cases.

Food and Drink

Food and beverages, including chewing gum and bottled water, are not allowed in the galleries.


Photography and videography for personal, noncommercial use is allowed in the museum’s permanent collection galleries. Personal use includes personal cameras, cell phones, tablets, and other non-commercial devices. The use of flash, lights, tripods, and selfie-sticks are prohibited.  View complete photography policy.


The Art Center is an enjoyable and fascinating place for children of all ages. Please make sure that they are always accompanied by an adult. We invite you and your children to talk, laugh, and move around the galleries freely.

Nursing and Bottle Feeding

Breastfeeding is welcome anywhere in the museum. Food and bottles are permitted only in the courtyard, lobby, or café spaces where artwork is not on view. Strollers are allowed throughout the Art Center, as are diaper bags, provided they are secured to the stroller, preferably in the undercarriage basket.


Running and other physical activities where someone may hurt themselves or damage the works of art are not permitted.

Writing and Sketching

Only pencils are permitted in the galleries; pens, markers, crayons, or other writing utensils are not allowed.


The Art Center offers a wide range of hands-on classes for families, children, teens, and adults. Please see our class schedule for more details.

Coat Check

Backpacks, beverages, large bags, and umbrellas may be stowed in coat check or at the Information Desk at the beginning of your visit.

Cell Phones

Cellular phone conversations should be kept to a minimum and held in non-gallery areas of the museum.


With the exception of service dogs, animals are not allowed in the museum.


Tobacco products of any kind are prohibited.


Weapons of any kind are not permitted on Des Moines Art Center premises.

Implied Consent

Visiting the Des Moines Art Center or Pappajohn Sculpture Park, or participating in Art Center programs and events constitutes an agreement by the visitor or participant and/or the parent or guardian to allow the Art Center to take photographs or video for use in Art Center marketing materials including social media, websites, and printed materials.