Inaugurated on November 29, 1934 under the name of Museo de Artes Plásticas, it was the first art museum in Mexico dedicated to exhibiting artistic objects for contemplation. Its collection included items from the 16th century, to the murals made in 1934 by Diego Rivera and José Clemente Orozco, as well as a Mesoamerican sculpture room, another with a Mexican print and a Museum of Popular Art that housed the Roberto Montenegro collection. .
In 1947, taking advantage of the creation of the National Institute of Fine Arts, the museographer and cultural promoter Fernando Gamboa and the painters Julio Castellanos and Julio Prieto modified the project and its name changed to the National Museum of Plastic Arts, which incorporated a large educational and a vast plan of publications that promoted the national artistic wealth. As of 1968, the Palace's exhibition rooms are known as the Museo del Palacio de Bellas Artes. His collection nurtured the assets of the new museum system in Mexico, made up of venues such as the Museum of Modern Art, the Virreinal Pinacoteca, the National Museum of San Carlos and the National Museum of Art. Since then, the museum has been in charge of constituting the main platform for action and exhibition space for national and international artists, through its temporary exhibitions. Of the enormous collection that it housed during the first half of its history, the Museum of the Palace of Fine Arts currently permanently exhibits seventeen mural works by seven national artists executed between 1928 and 1963, maintains an intense program of temporary exhibitions, has a publishing label that disseminates the most relevant research on national and international art, and offers a large number of activities for all types of audiences.