"Medieval to Metal: The Art & Evolution of the GUITAR" is an art exhibition that comprises objects, illustrations, and photographs, bringing the design history of the guitar to museum and gallery visitors. The touring exhibition is curated in partnership with art museums and galleries, and each installation is tailored to the layout, theme, and mission of the art venue.


The "Medieval To Metal" exhibition explores all facets of the world's most popular instrument, from its history as an instrument of popular culture over the past four hundred years to modern efforts to reinvent the guitar with different materials, shapes, and approaches to design. Design illustrations, objects, and photographs provide a rich context for exploring the artistic components of the guitar.  Visitors will experience the art, history, and cultural impact of the guitar in an exhibition that contains 40 instruments ranging from the rare and antique to the wildly popular and innovative. The artifacts are supplemented with dozens of photographs and illustrations that depict significant artists and instruments of the last century.

"Medieval To Metal: The Art & Evolution Of The GUITAR" is an exciting and engaging experience that gives visitors the chance to interact with the guitar not only from the perspective of its history, evolution, and design, but through the music it has created. As the guitar's ancestors evolved over centuries from the earliest ouds and lutes, guitar makers experimented with shapes, materials, and accessories, seeking the perfect blend of beauty and sound. Musicians and luthiers continue to alter guitar design in their endless quest for a fresh aesthetic and sound that fuels creative synergy, musical innovation, and cultural change.

In addition to the objects, the exhibition features:

• The Permanence Of Design
Hand-drawn illustrations were created for the exhibition by renowned designer Gerard Huerta. The illustrations show how guitars designed in the 1950s have not changed while other contemporary devices, from automobiles to telephones, are nearly unrecognizable relative to their 1950s counterparts. (8 life-sized prints)

• The Players & Their Instruments
Mounted photos of famous players of the past 100 years and the guitars most closely associated with them provide a link to the people who have helped establish the guitar's legacy. The photos were taken by noted concert photographer Neil Zlozower. (20 framed 11 x 14 prints).

If your art museum or venue is interested in scheduling this exciting new exhibition, contact us at 917-208-4333, or email us at director {at} nationalguitarmuseum.com

We look forward to hearing from you!


• Stamford Museum: February 22 – May 26, 2019
• Currier Art Museum: June – September 2019
• National Czech & Slovak Museum: October 2019 – January 2020
• Museum Of Texas: February – May 2020
• Reading Public Museum: September 18, 2021 – January 9, 2022


Summer 2020

Fall 2020

Spring 2021

Summer 2021


• The “Medieval to Metal” exhibition was a sensation here. I've been director of the Butler Institute of American Art for 35 years and have never experienced such a rousing community response to any exhibition until the GUITAR exhibition. The presentation was extremely professional and the exhibition beautifully planned and executed. We could not have been happier.
Lou Zona, Director, Butler Institute of Art

"Medieval to Metal” brought diverse audiences of all ages to the Vero Beach Museum of Art, many for the first time. They enjoyed discovering relevant connections between art, history, science, and the innovative engineering of guitar designs. The opportunity to view masterfully crafted musical instruments in a museum gallery continually delighted the senses of our visitors.
Brady Roberts, Executive Director, Vero Beach Museum of Art

• “Medieval to Metal” was a tremendous success for us. The thirteen-week exhibition drew record crowds and reached hundreds of first-time visitors, who enthusiastically shared feedback with us and via social media, which spread the word about the exhibition even farther. Out-of-state visitors made trips specifically to see it.
Kathy Kelsey Foley, Director, Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum

• “Medieval to Metal" was exactly what we always hope for in any of our traveling exhibitions one that engages and excites a demographically diverse multi-generational audience and leaves them walking out of the museum waiting to tell their friends of their experience.
Tod Ruhstaller, CEO & Curator of History, The Haggin Museum

• “Medieval to Metal” appealed to a broad cross-section of people and raised awareness of the museum in the community. New visitors discovered the museum, especially ‘dads and lads.’ Many of our visitors came to see the show more than once, bringing family and friends. The exhibition's mixture of stunning objects and history allowed us to develop unique programming and exciting events during the entire run of the installation.
Mary J. Kershaw, Director, New Mexico Museum of Art


Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum:  February 28, 2015 - May 31, 2015
New Mexico Museum of Art: February 6, 2016 - May 1, 2016
Sonoma County Museum: May 27, 2016 – September 5, 2016
The Haggin Museum: October 6, 2016 – January 8, 2017
Butler Institute Of American Art: January 20, 2017 – April 30, 2017
Saginaw Art Museum: September 29 – January 6, 2017
Vero Beach Museum Of Art: January 27 – May 6, 2018
The Appleton Museum of Ocala: May 14 – September 3, 2018
Fort Wayne Museum of Art: September 29, 2018 – January 6, 2019


"Medieval To Metal: The Art & Evolution Of The GUITAR" is a traveling art installation produced by The National GUITAR Museum. The NGM was founded to promote and preserve the legacy of the guitar, and is the world's first museum dedicated to the history, science, evolution, and cultural impact of the guitar.

At the completion of the tour, one U.S. city will be chosen to become the permanent home of The National GUITAR Museum.

The museum is overseen by its executive director, HP Newquist, and is supported by curators, designers, museum professionals, and a Board Of Advisors that includes guitarists Tony Iommi, Steve Vai, Steve Howe, Liona Boyd, Ritchie Blackmore, and Joe Bonamassa.


"Medieval To Metal: The Art & Evolution Of The GUITAR"

is available for bookings in 2020 and 2021.

Consider us for your museum.

Contact us.
info { at } nationalguitarmuseum.com