About The Museum
What is the legacy of your cultural heritage in Texas? Is there really strength in diversity or is it just a buzz word? Why do Texans take themselves so seriously?
The museum answers these, and many other questions. Visitors to the museum will learn the stories of immigrants from around the globe who settled in Texas and contributed to what is today the 15th largest economy in the world.
Located at Hemisfair, steps from the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center and the Tower of the Americas, and only a short walk from The Alamo and the Riverwalk, the museum is a popular destination for tourists, residents, students, researchers, history buffs, and shopping enthusiasts. The museum is family-friendly, and includes many hands-on elements for children.
The Institute of Texan Cultures gives voice to the experiences of people from across the globe who call Texas home, providing insight into the past, present and future.
The museum is a component of The University of Texas at San Antonio. It plays a role in the university’s community engagement initiatives by developing quality, accessible resources for educators and lifelong learners on topics of cultural heritage. It strives to develop a rich and vibrant culture in the arts and humanities that will expand the community’s awareness and appreciation of Texas through an engaging series of exhibits, programs, and special events.
The Institute of Texan Cultures is located in downtown San Antonio on the UTSA Hemisfair Campus, a short walk from the Alamo and the River Walk. The 182,000-square-foot complex features 65,000 square feet of exhibits and displays that tell the stories of Texans.
The museum opened as the Texas State Exhibits Pavilion, which was built for the 1968 HemisFair celebration. Today, the museum pursues a mandate as the state's center for multicultural education by investigating the ethnic and cultural history of the state and presenting the resulting information with a variety of offerings:
Exhibits, programs, and special events designed to entertain, inspire, and educate
Outreach programs to schools and other groups
In early 2010, the institute formalized an Affiliation agreement with the Smithsonian Institution
in Washington, D.C. Affiliate status
grants the institute access to the Smithsonian's artifacts, education, and performing arts programs, expert speakers, teacher workshops, and resources to complement and broaden exhibitions. The Affiliation agreement marks a new era for the institute. A series of upgrades are planned to revitalize main exhibit floor. As The University of Texas at San Antonio strives to achieve national research university status, the museum strives to become a cultural institution of equal caliber.
Funding for the museum comes primarily from three sources: (1) biennial legislative appropriations; (2) exhibit floor and special event admissions; and (3) grants, contributions, and other locally generated funds such as the rental of the museum's facilities, and the sale of its publications, audiovisuals, library services, and merchandise from the museum store. Major support is provided by the museum's Advisory Council. Learn how you can support the Institute of Texan Cultures