The museum's permanent collection is exhibited in the Carmichael Gallery, and includes a mix of styles and imagery by American artists from the 19th century to present day. The collection includes historical paintings by the Hoosier impressionists as well as works by living Midwestern artists from South Bend and the region.
Five other galleries display changing exhibitions: traveling, solo and group exhibitions by professional artists as well as local artist groups and students.

Educational opportunities include a full range of instruction designed to meet the needs of all skill sets from youth to adult. Museum Morning and Sculpture Quest introduces area 5th graders to art and resources are made available to area educators. The SBMA maintains an active docent program of volunteers that lead educational tours through the galleries.

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