6 Essential Arts Memberships Every Houstonian Should Have

Support your vibrant art community.

By Amarie Gipson

As the Houston arts district continues to expand, locals are encouraged to take full advantage of the city’s premier institutions. At its most basic level, a museum or arts society membership grants access to more frequent visitation, exclusive gifts and helps you stay on top of the flux in special exhibitions and programs happening in museums each year.

Buying a membership is the perfect way to immerse yourself in the city’s vibrant art community and contributes to more sustainable futures for the institutions. To help you decide where are best to join, we’ve compiled a list of Houston’s most vital arts memberships.

Here are a few must-have memberships to make 2022 your most artful year yet:

Museum of Fine Arts, Houston 

Have you ever visited the MFAH and been overwhelmed by its massive multi-building campus? Getting a membership will grant you unlimited access to visits and makes it easier to explore over time. Individual memberships start at $70 (or $40 for students) and include free general admission and parking year-round, along with free/discounted tickets to special exhibitions, films, gift shop items, Museum restaurants, art classes and more. No matter how big or small, yearly contributions to MFAH via a tax-deductible membership help support the Museum’s world-renowned programs and events. 

To learn more about the MFAH’s memberships, visit here

Contemporary Arts Museum Houston 

As one of the oldest non-collection, contemporary art spaces in the nation, CAMH is hailed for providing free access to cutting-edge exhibitions and programs. Artists, students, educators and military with ID can enjoy the museum's benefits for $50. Individual ($85) and household ($150) memberships each offer online shop and art magazine discounts, along with early access to events, and invitations to exhibition previews and an exclusive newsletter. CAMH affinity group, the Collector’s Circle, is the top-tier membership that ranges from $200-$2,500 a year.  

For more information, visit here

Menil Collection 

Since 1987, the Menil Collection has granted free access to the personal art collection of its founders, John and Dominique de Menil. General Membership (starting at $125) is perfect for the novice art enthusiast to enjoy curator-led tours through the collection, events, and 10-percent discount in the Menil Bookstore. Other memberships include the Menil Contemporaries (starting at $150), perfect for people between 21 and 40, and the Menil Society (starting at $1500) for more committed patrons and collectors. All membership levels have access to Menil’s monthly newsletter, annual membership celebration and reciprocal benefits for over 1,000 museums in North America. 

For more information on Menil’s memberships, visit here

Art League Houston 

With inclusivity and creativity as its core values, the Art League Houston was founded in 1948 by a group of women artists, and is one of the city’s oldest non-profits. Six memberships categories start at $50 for individuals, and support the development of the institution’s programming and exhibitions. Supporters with memberships of $100 or more are recognized as part of the ALH’s Giving Circles, and acknowledged at the annual gala. The best part of becoming a member is getting discounts on all art classes, items at the onsite coffee shop, and 20 percent off at Art Supply on Almeda. 

For more information, visit here

Asia Society Texas Center 

Known for organizing over 150 public programs, performances and events with an international focus, the Asia Society celebrates diversity and multiculturalism. General ($38-$68), Patron ($200-$25,000), Corporate and Institutional level memberships are available for educators, students, seniors and individuals looking to donate more. Memberships range from perks that include store and dining discounts, facility rentals, free admission, parking vouchers and more. 

For more information, visit here

NASA Space Center Houston 

Located right outside Houston in League City, Space Center Houston is the official visitor center for NASA's Johnson Space Center. If you’re in the mood for a short road trip, or a space adventure, this criminally underrated science museum is the perfect destination, with a myriad of space artifacts, spacecraft and more. A membership comes equipped with free parking, plus general admission for one year, special exhibition openings, and most importantly, discounts on souvenirs. Space Center Houston’s Discovery Circle grants 6-8 tickets per visit. Memberships start at $55-$199 and are significantly cheaper than paying for two individual visits.

For more information on memberships at Space Center Houston, visit here.  

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