The Johnson Museum has one of the finest collections of art in New York State and is recognized as one of the most important university museums in the country. Spanning the history of art, the Museum's collections are especially strong in Asian art, nineteenth- and twentieth-century American art, and the graphic arts.
The Institute's collection of Asian art represents seventeen Asian cultures spanning over 5,000 years. The Department of Asian Arts has benefited greatly from generous gifts from knowledgeable collectors. Augustus L. Searle, Alfred F. Pillsbury, Richard P. Gale, Louis W. Hill, Jr., and Ruth and Bruce Dayton have donated specialized collections of international reputation, including ancient Chinese bronzes, ancient and post-Sung jade, Chinese monochrome ceramics, Ukiyo-e paintings, Japanese prints, and classical Chinese furniture. In addition, highly regarded specialized collections of Ch'ing dynasty silk textiles, Miao textiles, and surimono prints have been built over the years. The curatorial department's goal is to provide the public with a broad overview of Asian art.