Regional Art Scene

Credit: Courtesy Philadelphia Museum of Art

Regional Art Scene

Philadelphia and its surrounding communities have a wealth of renowned museums, galleries, and neighborhoods rich with arts events. The First Friday of every month, Old City hosts an open house of countless galleries. Free to the public, this monthly event attracts people from all walks, to appreciate and purchase contemporary and antique works. Simply strolling through the streets of Philadelphia, city dwellers and visitors alike will stumble upon extraordinary murals created by the Mural Arts Program. "MAP" has enriched various open, vacant, and mundane walls with images of community, culture, nature, and hope.

On the outskirt of center city Philadelphia, Northern Liberties houses galleries, restaurants, cafes, and an outstanding Jazzhaus. The "hipsters" of this neighborhood pride themselves on the revitalization of this gem in the city. You can also visit In Liquid to find more about the working artists of this community. Worth the wait, and only happening once a year, Philadelphia also hosts the Live Arts & Philly Fringe. In sync with the beginning of the Fall semester, students will be able to see, support, or work with the Fringe. Finally, for great eats, wonderful 19th and 20th century architecture, one can also patron the open-air Italian MarketReading Terminal Market, or Chinatown.

Nearby Museums


  • African American Museum

    Founded in 1976, the African American Museum in Philadelphia objectively interprets and presents the achievements and aspirations of African Americans from pre-colonial times to the current day. The AAMP currently houses four galleries and an auditorium, each of which offer exhibitions anchored by one of three dominant themes: the African Diaspora, the Philadelphia Story, and the Contemporary Narrative.


  • Barnes Foundation

    The mission of the Barnes Foundation, which dates back to its founding in 1922, is "the promotion of the advancement of education and the appreciation of the fine arts."


  • Brandywine River Museum

    Exhibiting American art in a 19th-century grist mill, the Brandywine River Museum is internationally known for its unparalleled collection of works by three generations of Wyeths and its fine collection of American illustration, still life and landscape painting.


  • Center for Art in Wood

    The Center for Art in Wood displays wood art on site and in traveling exhibitions and publications. The permanent collection contains more than 850 objects from around the world, ranging from traditional everyday objects to contemporary sculpture.


  • Delaware Art Museum

    The Delaware Art Museum connects people to art, offering an inclusive and essential community resource that through its collections, exhibitions, and programs generates creative energy that sustains, enriches, empowers, and inspires. The Museum is best known for its large collection of British Pre-Raphaelite art, works by Wilmington-native Howard Pyle and fellow American illustrators, and urban landscapes by John Sloan and his circle.


  • Fabric Workshop and Museum

    The Fabric Workshop and Museum is recognized as an internationally acclaimed contemporary art museum, uniquely distinguished as the only institution in the United States devoted to creating work in new materials and new media in collaboration with artists coming from diverse artistic backgrounds-including sculpture, installation, video, painting, ceramics, and architecture. Research, construction, and fabrication occur on-site in studios that are open to the public, providing visitors with the opportunity to see artwork from conception to completion.


  • Institute of Contemporary Art (UPenn)

    Founded in 1963, ICA at Penn is committed to living artists and the cutting-edge art of our time. The museum presented Andy Warhol's first solo exhibition in 1965 as well as significant shows of Agnes Martin, Robert Mapplethorpe, Glenn Ligon, Richard Artschwager, Karen Kilimnik, Lisa Yuskavage, and many others. Today the ICA at Penn continues to make history. In The New York Times, critic Roberta Smith observed, "On a surprisingly regular basis, the tiny Institute of Contemporary Art...mounts exhibitions that make the contemporary art adventures of many larger museums look blinkered, timid, and hidebound.


  • Michener Museum

    The James A. Michener Art Museum is dedicated to preserving, interpreting and exhibiting the art and cultural heritage of the Bucks County region. The Museum is named for Doylestown's most famous son, the Pulitzer-Prize winning writer and supporter of the arts who had first dreamed of a regional art museum in the early 1960's.


  • Mütter Museum

    America's finest museum of medical history, the Mütter displays its beautifully preserved collections of anatomical specimens, models, and medical instruments in a 19th century "cabinet museum" setting. The goal of the museum is to help the public understand the mysteries and beauty of the human body while appreciating the history of diagnosis and treatment of disease.


  • Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts

    PAFA's museum is internationally known for its collections of 19th- and 20th-century American paintings, sculptures, and works on paper. Its archives house important materials for the study of American art history, museums, and art training.


  • Philadelphia Museum of Art

    The Philadelphia Museum of Art is among the largest museums in the United States, with a collection of more than 227,000 works of art and more than 200 galleries presenting painting, sculpture, works on paper, photography, decorative arts, textiles, and architectural settings from Asia, Europe, Latin America, and the United States.


  • Princeton University Art Museum

    The mission of the Princeton University Art Museum is to make the visual arts an essential part of the experience of all Princeton University students; to advance knowledge of art and archaeology; to serve as a world-class destination for members of the local, regional, national, and international communities; and thus to act as a public gateway to the University's intellectual resources.


  • Rodin Museum

    The Rodin Museum is one of the defining icons of the city, housing one of the most comprehensive public collections of work outside Paris by one of the world's most renowned sculptors. An important part of visiting the Rodin Museum is experiencing the garden, which underwent a three-year rejuvenation effort supported by the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society, the City of Philadelphia Department of Parks and Recreation, and public and private funders.


  • Shofuso Japanese Tea House & Garden

    Shofuso Japanese House and Garden is a traditional-style Japanese house and nationally-ranked garden in Philadelphia's West Fairmount Park that reflects the history of Japanese culture in Philadelphia, from the 1876 Centennial Exposition to the installation of its contemporary paintings in 2007.


  • UPenn Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology 

    Founded in 1887, the Penn Museum has conducted more than 400 archaeological and anthropological expeditions around the world. Three gallery floors feature materials from Egypt, Mesopotamia, Canaan and Israel, Mesoamerica, Asia and the ancient Mediterranean World, as well as artifacts from native peoples of the Americas and Africa. With an active exhibition schedule, a membership program, and educational programming for children and adults, Penn Museum offers the public an opportunity to share in the ongoing discovery of humankind's collective heritage.


  • Woodmere Art Museum

    Woodmere Art Museum tells the story of Philadelphia's art and artists through a broad range of exhibitions, music events, classes, lectures, and programs. Woodmere's core collection includes important paintings by renowned artists such as Edward Redfield, Daniel Garber, Walter E. Schofield, Benjamin West, Frederic Edwin Church, Violet Oakley, and Arthur B. Carles.