The Fitchburg Art Museum is one of the treasured cultural institutions in Central New England, and serves the cities of Fitchburg and Leominster, as well as the surrounding communities in North Central Massachusetts and Southern New Hampshire. FAM was founded in 1925 through a bequest of artist, collector, and educator Eleanor Norcross.
Its complex of four interconnected buildings, with over 20,000 square feet (1,900 m2) of exhibition space, features exhibitions from its art historical collections plus special loan exhibitions focused on regional contemporary art. Collection strengths include American photography and general African art, including Ancient Egyptian art. The Egyptian collection is presented in an interactive gallery designed for families and school groups.
In 2012, FAM began its rotating contemporary New England artist exhibition program, thus connecting the strength of its historical collections with contemporary art practices. There is also an annual survey show featuring the recent work of many living New England artists, including numerous artworks for sale. Each temporary exhibition is accompanied by an interactive educational exhibit in the Learning Lounge, where visitors young and old can learn about what they are seeing in the galleries and better understand their own reactions to the exhibits.