Environmental Responsibility

  • Street photography of the museum in the evening

    At the San José Museum of Art (SJMA) we recognize the urgency of the current climate crisis and are committed to minimizing our impact on climate change. We are taking steps at both the individual and the institutional level to continually reduce the environmental impact of our work and we recognize environmental responsibility as one of the most critically urgent issues of the present. We commit to caring for our planet as we care for our visitors, our community, and our collections and pledge to do our part to build a more sustainable future for the next generations.

    Examples of this commitment in action include:



    • Environmental responsibility is a recurrent theme throughout SJMA’s cross-curricular STEAM education programs 

    • SJMA’s extensive arts education programs prioritize the use of found objects and repurposed materials whenever possible 


    • All of our gallery spaces and most of our public spaces use 100% LED lightbulbs to reduce power consumption. When LED lights are not used we use minimal impact fluorescent bulbs

    • We have gone paperless for our gallery maps 

    • SJMA switched to a zero VOC, (Volatile Organic Compound) eco-friendly paint across the entire facility. Moving forward, the Museum will only use eco-friendly paint options as we increase our sustainability efforts. Using zero VOC paint curbs harmful VOC emissions, is healthier for those working with the paint, and is significantly better for the environment during cleanup and disposal


    • In 2023 SJMA switched from print to digital membership cards, thereby reducing paper waste and fossil fuel consumption 


    • Anything we can recycle here we do, including large quantities of cardboard, packing materials, and the like  

    • We recycle all bulbs, including LED, florescent or otherwise in accordance with state mandates 

    • We reuse as much wrapping material for artwork as we possibly can including plastic, cardboard, foam, and other crating materials 

    • Wood products are also reused and repurposed into things like gallery furniture or other general uses  

    • Paint is properly stored and any discard is dried and properly disposed of 

    • Recycling bins for bottles, cans, paper, and plastic are placed throughout both the public and administrative areas of the Museum

    2023 Active Member with @galleryclimatecoalition 

    GCC 2024  Active Member Verification mark

    We are pleased to announce the San José Museum of Art has successfully qualified as a 2023 Active Member with @galleryclimatecoalition! To achieve Active status we had to demonstrate that our organization had implemented environmental sustainability best practice in line with GCC guidance.

    Active Membership is not a certification of sustainability nor a claim that we are doing things perfectly or have all the answers—none of us are at this point. We’re all doing our best to assess, report and reduce our impact, set targets in line with science, take any actions we can, and work out other solutions as we go. 

    We encourage all of our peers and colleagues to visit the Gallery Climate Coalition website to learn more about the initiative and how to get involved!