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The Exhibitions of the world-renowned Museum of Man are a major resource for the San Diego community. Permanent exhibits explore the Maya, ancient Egypt, the Kumeyaay Indians of San Diego County, Human Evolution, and the Human Life Cycle. These exhibits inform and entertain San Diegans and visitors alike, and are used extensively in the region's school curricula to study ancient history, local history, Indigenous cultures, and health sciences. These permanent exhibits are complemented by a series of changing exhibits on display throughout the Museum.

Special Exhibitions

Empowering Women: Artisan Cooperatives That Transform Communities
January 25, 2014 - August 24, 2014

One Moroccan artist teaches a village of women to read. An embroiderer from India takes out her first loan. A Hutu woman from war-torn Rwanda works with a Tutsi to make “peace” baskets. And a soup kitchen for aids orphans delivers meals because of a folk art cooperative’s success in Swaziland. From Africa to Asia to the Americas, female artisans are creating grassroots cooperatives to reach new markets, raise living standards, and transform lives. Empowering Women explores the work of ten such enterprises in ten countries.

August 24, 2013 - August 24, 2014

Core Exhibitions

Ancient Egypt

Now Open

The culture of ancient Egypt holds a universal appeal and fascination for adults and children alike. The Museum of Man is fortunate to have one of the most important ancient Egyptian collections in the United States.

Children's Discovery Center

The Children's Discovery Center (CDC) exhibit, Discover Egypt, gives Discovery Center visitors an opportunity for interactive, sensory learning about ancient Egyptian civilization, and about the role of anthropologists and archaeologists in the research and interpretation of the culture.

Footsteps Through Time

Now Open

The Museum's West Wing houses our fabulous anthropology exhibit, Footsteps Through Time: Four Million Years of Human Evolution. The permanent exhibit—covering 7,000 square feet and featuring five galleries and more than a hundred touchable replicas of early humans

Kumeyaay: Native Californians

This ongoing exhibit is now open to the public.

The Kumeyaay, or Diegueño (as they were later called by the Spanish), are the Native American people of present-day Southern California (San Diego and western Imperial Counties) and Northern Baja. For many generations before the arrival of the Spanish, they occupied the deserts, mountains, and coasts, developing sophisticated means of adapting to the diverse environments.

Maya: Heart of Sky, Heart of Earth

Exhibit Now Open Daily

The ancient Maya left behind evidence of a sophisticated and complex culture. Using cycles of the moon, sun, and planets, they were able to develop accurate calendar systems. More than a thousand years ago, they used unique hieroglyphic writing to carve important dates, names of their rulers, and ceremonial events on stone monuments in southern Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, Honduras, and El Salvador.