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State of the Art

Pictured: Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts

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Art Museums & Galleries

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Philadelphia is a city of firsts, and it holds a first in the art category too: the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts is the oldest art museum in the country, founded in 1805 by Charles Willson Peale, a painter himself who also fathered distinguished artists, Rembrandt and Raphaelle Peale — two of his seven sons.

Philadelphia was also home to Thomas Eakins, whose penetrating portraits of 19th-century Philadelphians make him arguably the greatest American painter. And this area has nurtured several “schools” of art, from the Pennsylvania Impressionists to the Ashcan school, led by Pennsylvania Academy teacher Robert Henri.

Featured Listings

  • Art in the Open

    Experience the creation of art along the Schuylkill River

    Experience art in a variety of mediums and styles during Art in the Open.

    Artists from around the country will showcase their creative process along Philadelphia’s Schuylkill Banks during Art in the Open.

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  • Philadelphia Sketch Club

    Fostering creativity and visual arts since 1860

    America’s oldest club for artists, the Philadelphia Sketch Club offers workshops in drawing, painting and printmaking.

    The oldest continuing artist organization in the country, the Philadelphia Sketch Club has served as a meeting place for the creators and supporters of art since 1860.

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  • Patrick Kelly: Runway of Love
    at the Perelman Building

    First retrospective for the influential 1980s designer

    The designs of Patrick Kelly.

    On display at the Philadelphia Museum of Art’s Perelman Building, Patrick Kelly: Runway of Love highlights 80 fully accessorized ensembles by American-born, Paris-based fashion designer Patrick Kelly.

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  • The 2014 Philadelphia Flower Show

    The world’s largest indoor flower show

    Experience Articulture at the PHS Philadelphia Flower Show.

    Art and horticulture combine for the 185th PHS Philadelphia Flower Show, the world’s oldest and largest indoor flower show!

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  • Treasures from Korea:
    Arts and Culture of the Joseon Dynasty

    Rare look into Korean art and culture at the Philadelphia Museum of Art

    Ceremonial robes worn by Hyeon Baek-Un, a high-ranking government official in the late Joseon period.

    Treasures from Korea: Arts and Culsture of the Joseon Dynasty 1392-1910 at the Philadelphia Museum of Art is the first full-scale survey in the United States to focus on the art of the celebrated Joseon dynasty.

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  • Yinka Shonibare MBE: Magic Ladders
    at the Barnes Foundation

    Groundbreaking new exhibition examining history, race, slavery and commerce

    Pedagogy Boy/Boy, 2003. Mannequins, Dutch wax-printed cotton, metal, wood, and fiberglass.

    The Barnes Foundation is beginning 2014 with the groundbreaking work of international artist Yinka Shonibare MBE.

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  • Philadelphia Museum of Art

    The Art Museum covers 10 acres and houses more than 300,000 works spanning 2,000 years

    Front steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art

    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.

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  • From Philadelphia To Monaco:
    Grace Kelly Beyond the Icon

    Discover the life of a local princess at the James A. Michener Art Museum

    Grace Kelly in her wedding dress, la Galerie d’Hercule du Palais Princier de Monaco, April 19, 1956.

    Explore the life of a homegrown princess during the new exhibition From Philadelphia To Monaco: Grace Kelly Beyond The Icon on view at the James A. Michener Art Museum.

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  • Independence National Historical Park

    The birthplace of American democracy

    The Liberty Bell Philadelphia

    Known as the birthplace of American democracy, Historic Philadelphia’s Independence National Historical Park (INHP) is located on the site of many of the seminal events that carried the nation through its founding as a global leader of democratic ideals.

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  • KAWS @ PAFA

    Influential pop artist transforms Historic Landmark Building

    The historic home of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts will be transformed as the Brooklyn-based pop artist KAWS arrives in Philadelphia.

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