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Philadelphia Museum of Art

Third-largest art museum in the country and a must-see attraction

Philadelphia Museum of Art

The famous steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Credit: Courtesy the Philadelphia Museum of Art


The Experience

Like Philadelphia’s own Parthenon, the Philadelphia Museum of Art sits majestically on a rise at the end of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. The vast collections of this temple of art make it the third-largest art museum in the country, and an absolute must-see on the city’s cultural circuit.

Among its impressive holdings in Renaissance, American, Impressionist and Modern art, some standouts include a great Rogier van der Weyden altarpiece, a large Bathers by Cezanne, a room devoted to Philadelphia’s own Thomas Eakins, and Marcel Duchamp’s notorious mixed-media Bride Stripped Bare by her Bachelors (The Large Glass), exactly as the dada master installed it.

Upstairs, breathe in other cultures and times through over 80 period rooms, from the medieval cloister to the Indian temple. The Museum has wowed visitors in recent years with shows it helped to organize, from Cezanne and Degas to Brancusi and Barnett Newman.

Creative Africa

Dates: May 14 – September 25, 2016
During the summer of 2016, artwork from all across Africa fills the Perelman Building at the Philadelphia Museum of Art for Creative Africa, a major new exhibition of African artwork presented in collaboration with the Penn Museum.

The huge exhibition spans two floors of the Museum of Art’s annex building and is made up of five different shows: Look Again: Contemporary Perspectives on African Art, Three Photographers/Six Cities, Vlisco: African Fashion on a Global Stage, and The Architecture of Francis Kéré: Building for Community and Threads of Tradition.

While the exhibitions are all vastly different, they all celebrate African art, textiles and architecture and teach museum visitors about the creative force of African artists.

Access to Creative Africa is included in the price of general admission. To accompany the immense display, the Philadelphia Museum of Art hosts special events throughout the duration of Creative Africa.

For more information on Creative Africa, click the button below.

more on Creative Africa

Art After 5

The Art After 5 events at the Philadelphia Museum of Art features live jazz or international music concerts and a cash bar in the Great Stair Hall every Friday of the month. The performances focus on jazz, but also feature a smattering of international, soul and rhythm and blues starting at 5:00 p.m.

For more info on Art After 5 and a list of upcoming events, click the button below.

Art After 5


Your ticket to the Philadelphia Museum of Art grants you two-consecutive days admission to the museum along with admission to the Ruth and Raymond G. Perelman Building and the restored Rodin Museum and Historic House Mount Pleasant.

On the first Sunday of the month and every Wednesday after 5 p.m., you can name your price of admission.

Purchase Tickets Online

Frank Gehry’s Master Plan for the Philadelphia Museum of Art

A long-time in the making, the museum is about to undergo an ambitious renovation, revitalization and expansion with the assistance of famed architect Frank Gehry.

The multi-phase, multi-year plan touch every part of the museum with a major focus on opening up the interior space and making it more navigable for visitors.

Take a Closer Look


Founded during the nation’s first centennial in 1876 as a museum of decorative arts, the Museum soon outgrew its quarters in Fairmount Park’s Memorial Hall. Its new building, in the form of three linked Greek temples, opened in 1928. Julian Abele, the chief designer and the first African-American graduate of the University of Pennsylvania’s architecture school, was inspired by the temples he saw while traveling in Greece.


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