At the Museum
Admission Is Free of Charge
At the Mead, we are committed to fostering an environment that ensures access for all of our visitors. This website page is designed to provide information on getting to the museum, visitor guidelines, and accessibility factors during your visit, as well as additional resources that are available at the museum. Our commitment to making our programs, exhibitions, and collections accessible is ongoing. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact our Museum Security Supervisor, Nicholas Taupier.
If you experience any access barriers with your visit to the Mead, please share it / or your thoughts and expectations with us:
Amherst College Campus: Accessibility Barrier Reporting Form
Facilities and Amenities
There is a gender-inclusive restroom located between the Fairchild Gallery and the Arms Gallery. Restrooms for men and women are situated past the glass door on the right side of the Fairchild Gallery; these restrooms are equipped with baby-changing facilities. All of the three restrooms mentioned above are wheelchair-accessible.
There is a drinking fountain located between the restrooms for men and women, outside of the Fairchild Gallery.
The Mead Art Museum welcomes service animals according to the Massachusetts State Law and the ADA Regulations. For more information on these regulations, consult the Electronic Code of Federal Regulation 35.104 and the ADA definition of a service animal, as well as Massachusetts Laws about Service Animals.
Strollers are allowed inside the museum. Strollers can also be parked in the Mead’s locker room when not in use.
- If the size of the backpack is larger than the standard carry-on bag (22”x 14” x 9”), then it must be checked into the locker room. If it’s a smaller bag (12” x 12”), then you may carry it on your side or front.
- Diaper bags must be checked in our lobby- unless the bags are being used in the changing stations inside the restrooms. Once you are done using the diaper bag, it must be returned to the locker room or front desk.
- All Medical bags are allowed inside the museum. If the medical bag is larger than what we allow (12’’ x 12’’ inches), please ask the lobby attendant at the front desk for an access clip to put on it, which will signal to security inside the museum that the bag doesn’t need to be checked.
Visitors with Limited Mobility
All of the public spaces in the museum are wheelchair-accessible and on one floor.
If you are visiting our collection storage for research or a class, the lower levels can be accessed through an elevator that must be operated by a staff member, please notify the staff arranging your visit that you will need access to the elevator, so we can ensure you access to the elevator for your visit or place the objects you are researching in the teaching gallery upstairs.
Accessible parking spaces are located at 41 Quadrangle Drive, right across the entrance to the museum. An accessibility ramp is available for visitors as they make their way from the main quadrangle to the path that leads up to the museum entrance. For more information on directions and parking, view our visit page.
- The Mead’s GPS friendly address is:
41 Quadrangle Drive in Amherst, MA, 01002
- The Mead’s GPS friendly address is:
Automatic Door Assist
Power-assisted door openers are located at the main entrance and exit doors to the museum. A call button is also installed at the main entrance -- when the call button is pressed, a staff member will meet the visitor outside to offer any additional assistance.
Visitors are encouraged to bring their own wheelchairs. We also have a wheelchair on site which can be checked out free of charge on a first-come, first-served basis at the front desk.
Armchairs and benches are located throughout the galleries.
Visitors who are D/deaf or Hard of Hearing
Sign-language interpretation is available free of charge for all tours and museum programs. If you would like an ASL interpreter, please contact us with at least three weeks’ advance notice to ensure we can accommodate the request.
Visitors Who are Blind or Have Low Vision
Please be aware that lighting in the galleries may be dimmed to protect the art.
Verbal Descriptions use precise, non-interpretive language to convey the visual experience of artworks. Developed for those who are blind or have low vision, these guides are valuable for all visitors who seek an in-depth exploration of individual artworks. Currently, we have descriptions for the exhibition What Looms Large and are actively adding more to our collection. These descriptions can be found in an exhibition booklet at the exhibition's entrances and are available to scan with a QR code reader. Due to COVID restrictions visitors will need to use their personal device.
The museum is in the process of creating large-print brochures of our exhibition text and we hope to have them available at the front desk for visitors soon.
Visitors with Sensory Processing Disorders and/or on the Autism Spectrum:
This social narrative is a step-by-step guide with images and descriptions of what to expect upon visiting the Mead Art Museum. It is intended to help you familiarize yourself with the museum guidelines and what to expect so that you can plan for a fun museum visit.
The temperature inside the museum is generally around 70 degrees fahrenheit, year round. Visitors are encouraged to carry a lightweight jacket inside the museum.
The video gallery and Fairchild Gallery (largest gallery when you enter) are the loudest and prone to echo. At this time the museum does not have noise-canceling headphones, so if this is something you need, please make sure to bring a pair for your visit.
Visitors with Memory Loss
Currently we don’t have a long-standing program for visitors with memory loss. Our hope is to develop programs in small group settings in which art serves as a medium to create meaningful experiences for adults with dementia and/or memory loss and their caregivers. If you are interested in visiting the museum for a tour or would like to partner with us for a memory loss program, please contact Emily Potter-Ndiaye.
The Mead Art Museum’s website is currently hosted by Amherst College. Amherst College is committed to making its website accessible. We follow the Web Content Accessibility 2.0 (WCAG) standards.
For more information, head to the Amherst Accessibility Website.