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Top Can’t Miss Exhibits in Philadelphia

August 16, 2022

Philadelphia is filled with wonderful art museums and galleries to explore, many of which have recently reopened with new health and safety measures in place. Below is a roundup of some of the exciting exhibits that are on view now or coming soon around the region.

Harry Potter: The Exhibition, Electricity, The Franklin Air Show, and 100 Years of the Walt Disney Company at The Franklin Institute

Explore Hagrid's Hut (pictured above) at The Franklin Institute. Photo courtesy of Harry Potter: The Exhibition.

Harry Potter: The Exhibition is now open at The Franklin Institute and promises to be “the most comprehensive touring exhibition ever presented about the Wizarding World.” With its World Premiere underway in Philadelphia, the experience invites wizards, witches and muggles of all ages to explore a collection of authentic film props and costumes along with plenty of spellbinding surprises. The groundbreaking exhibition spans thousands of square feet and features 10 distinct areas, including Hogwarts castle and Hagrid’s Hut. Prior to exploring these immersive environments, guests are able to choose their house and wand at the beginning of the experience — decisions which will deliver a magical, personalized journey as they encounter the characters, moments, beasts and settings from the Harry Potter, Fantastic Beasts, and expanded Wizarding World franchises. Tickets are available now.

Two of The Franklin Institute’s most popular exhibits – Electricity and The Franklin Air Show – are open once again. Electricity, the classic exhibit inspired by and dedicated to the museum’s namesake Ben Franklin, recently got an upgrade. The space invites guests to spark their curiosity while learning all about electricity and how it is created. The Franklin Air Show is also back and better than ever. Prepare to take flight while exploring this exhilarating exhibit dedicated to aviation.

Another world premiere exhibition set to open at The Franklin Institute in February 2023 will celebrate 100 Years of the Walt Disney Company. The anniversary exhibit will celebrate a century of innovation and imagination from the creative empire, while also honoring its founder Walt Disney’s legacy. Galleries and hundreds of Disney artifacts – some never seen outside of the company’s vaults – will be on display. The characters and stories that the Walt Disney Company has brought to life from 1923 to 2023 will also be incorporated into the exhibit.

Isaac Julien: Once Again (Statues Never Die), Faces of Resilience, and Modigliani Up Close at the Barnes Foundation

The Barnes Foundation Detail Room 19, North Wall. Image © The Barnes Foundation Philadelphia. Photo by S. Murray.

Beginning June 19, 2022, Isaac Julien: Once Again (Statues Never Die) will be on view at the Barnes Foundation. The immersive film installation by artist and filmmaker Isaac Julien will explore the decades-long relationship between Dr. Albert C. Barnes and Alain Locke, along with the contested presence of African sculptures in western museums. Isaac Julien: Once Again (Statues Never Die) will be on view June 19 through September 4, 2022.

Faces of Resilience showcases works by artists from Mural Arts Philadelphia’s Guild program and SCI: Phoenix, which is southeast Pennsylvania’s maximum-security prison for men. The exhibiton features works demonstrating personal experiences of loss and hope, as well as the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Faces of Resilience is on view through August 22, 2022.

Opening October 16, 2022, Modigliani Up Close will give visitors a closer look at how Amedeo Modigliani created his paintings and sculptures. The exhibit will explore the iconic artist’s working methods and materials, which contributed to his unique style. Modigliani Up Close will be on view October 16, 2022 through January 29, 2023.

Martine Syms: Neural Swamp / The Future Fields Commission, Medieval Treasures from the Glencairn Museum, and Matisse in the 1930s at the Philadelphia Museum of Art

Martine Syms: Neural Swamp / The Future Fields Commission at the Philadelphia Museum of Art is the first exhibition in the United States to feature the newly commissioned multichannel video installation Neural Swamp by Martine Syms. Through her work, Syms uses sport, cinema, and surveillance to challenge racial and gender stereotypes, while investigating what it means to be Black and a woman in a hyper-digitized world. Martine Syms: Neural Swamp / The Future Fields Commission will be on view through October 30, 2022.

Medieval Treasures from the Glencairn Museum is on view at the Philadelphia Museum of Art while the Glencairn Museum – which is located in Bryn Athyn, just north of Philadelphia – undergoes renovations. Visitors to the Philadelphia Museum of Art will have the chance to view exquisite treasures, works of medieval art, and architecture from the Glencairn Museum, while making connections to similar works of art on display in the museum’s permanent galleries. Medieval Treasures from the Glencairn Museum will be on view at the Philadelphia Museum of Art through fall 2023.

In collaboration with the Musée de l’Orangerie in Paris and the Musée Matisse Nice, the Philadelphia Museum of Art will present the first major exhibition devoted to the pivotal decade of the 1930s in the art of Henri Matisse. Opening October 20, 2022, Matisse in the 1930s will present more than 100 works, ranging from both renowned and rarely seen paintings and sculptures, to drawings and prints, to illustrated books. It will also feature documentary photographs and films. Matisse in the 1930s will be on view October 20, 2022 through January 29, 2023.

Rodin’s Hands at the Rodin Museum

'Two Hands,' modeled 1904 by Auguste Rodin, French, 1840–1917; cast 1925 by the founder Alexis Rudier (French, 1874–1952). Bronze, 18 x 20 7/8 x 12 3/4 inches (45.7 x 53 x 32.4 cm). Bequest of Jules E. Mastbaum, 1929. Image courtesy Philadelphia Museum of Art, 2021.

Now on view at the Rodin Museum along the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Rodin’s Hands highlights Auguste Rodin’s mastery in conveying emotion and storytelling through the sculpting of hands. The exhibition features fifteen bronzes and plasters — many of which are rare or unique to the Philadelphia collection — which join the other masterpieces on view, both inside and outside the museum, as part of one of the largest collections of the sculptor’s work outside of Paris. Rodin’s Hands will be on view through December 2023.

Liberty: Don Troiani’s Paintings of the Revolutionary War, Black Founders: The Forten Family of Philadelphia, and The Declaration’s Journey: 250 Years of America’s Founding Document at the Museum of the American Revolution

'Liberty: Don Troiani’s Paintings of the Revolutionary War' at the Museum of the American Revolution. Photo by K. Huff for PHLCVB.

On view through September 5, 2022, Liberty: Don Troiani’s Paintings of the Revolutionary War brings together over 45 paintings by renowned historical painter — and alum of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts — Don Troiani, whose career has been dedicated to recreating scenes from the Revolutionary War by referencing sources, archaeology, artifacts and additional research. The works, which are on public display together for the first time in the Museum of the American Revolution‘s Patriots Gallery, are paired with artifacts that either inspired or are featured in Troiani’s paintings, including weapons, textiles, and more, presenting viewers with a one-of-a-kind snapshot of key moments from the war. Key works on view include the artist’s 2017 painting of the Boston Massacre, which is paired with an original copy of Paul Revere’s engraving of the event, as well as a new commission, Brave Men as Ever Fought, featuring a young African American sailor from Philadelphia observing Black and Native American troops in the Continental Army marching past Independence Hall. Now, people from all over the world can experience this special exhibition in a new 360-degree virtual tour that brings the exhibit to life. To learn more about the exhibition, click here.

Upcoming exhibits to the Museum of the American Revolution include Black Founders: The Forten Family of Philadelphia and The Declaration’s Journey: 250 Years of America’s Founding Document. Coming to the museum in February 2023, Black Founders: The Forten Family of Philadelphia will tell the story of Forten and his descendants, and how they lived during the American Revolution and cross-racial relationships in Philadelphia. Visitors will also learn how the Forten family went on to become leaders in the abolition movement leading up to the Civil War. The exhibit will be on view February 11 through November 26, 2023. Opening in the fall of 2025, The Declaration’s Journey: 250 Years of America’s Founding Document will explore how the Declaration of Independence became one of the most world-renowned statements of political rights in human history.

The River Feeds Back, Watershed Moment, and Ocean Bound at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University

Watershed Moment will be on view through October 30, 2022. Photo by R. Torres.

Opening June 1, 2022 at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University is The River Feeds Back – an immersive sound installation created by artists Annea Lockwood and Liz Phillips. The exhibit brings the sounds of the Schuylkill River watershed to life. The enchanting soundscape was recorded at Pennsylvania sites along 135 miles of the Schuylkill River, from its headwaters to its mouth, as well as its tributaries including Tulpehocken Creek, French Creek and Wissahickon Creek. Guests will experience this dynamic sound work through a variety of listening portals arranged throughout the Academy’s Dietrich Gallery. The River Feeds Back will be on view through October 30, 2022.

The River Feeds Back is one of four installations that make up Watershed Moment, which is designed to inspire guests to connect to and protect our local waterways. Watershed Moment is part of the Academy’s Water Year celebration and will be on view August 3 – October 30, 2022.

Another key part of the Academy and Drexel’s Water Year 2022 celebration is Ocean Bound, which opens August 20, 2022 at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University. This new exhibition will show how we all affect the ocean, no matter where we live. Visitors of all ages will have the chance to learn what a watershed is through hands-on activities and videos. Guests will be able to make it rain in a 3-D watershed model and pilot a life-sized “submersible” from a mountain stream to the ocean, all while discovering and learning about aquatic life and their habitats along the way. Guests will also learn more about the threats to watersheds, as well as how to identify solutions and implement change by changing their own habits on land. Ocean Bound will be on view through January 15, 2023.

Water Pics and Downstream at Science History Institute

Outside of the Science History Institute in Old City is Water Pics, the establishment’s latest outdoor exhibition. Water Pics features a series of posters created by the Pennsylvania Sanitary Water Board in 1951. The posters give passersby a deeper look into the importance of keeping our waterways clean. As part of an anti-pollution campaign, the posters highlight challenges to water quality and the need to balance human health, economic activity, and environmental quality. Water Pics will be on view through October 2022.

Downstream invites guests to learn more about how water moves and what it carries as it constantly flows around us. The exhibit will also dive more into the ways in which waterways can be threatened, as well as the choices we can make to protect streams, rivers, and oceans. Downstream will be on view through July 31, 2023.

Negotiating Grids, Gift/Deeds: Collectors at PAFA, Strange Sensations: The Startling and Surreal in PAFA’s Permanent Collection, and Making American Artists: Stories from the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, 1776–1976 at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (PAFA)

Negotiating Grids at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (PAFA) examines the use of grids through contemporary art while highlighting the different ways that artists have used the visual structure throughout history. Paintings and sculpture in this exhibition will dive deeper into how order, power, and belonging are defined within or outside of these structures. Negotiating Grids will be on view through December 31, 2022.

PAFA’s new exhibition series Gift/Deeds: Collectors at PAFA features 20th-century and contemporary art selections gifted to the institution by six Philadelphia art collectors. The exhibition highlights the importance of these various donated pieces and how they have strengthened PAFA’s permanent collection. Gift/Deeds: Collectors at PAFA will be on view through January 8, 2023.

By drawing inspiration from surrealism and magical realism, artists featured in Strange Sensations: The Startling and Surreal in PAFA’s Permanent Collection reveal the enchanting nature of the unknown. Both 20th- and 21st-century works of art that consider mysterious and otherworldly energies through a post-Surrealist lens will be on display. The works are also said to collectively highlight the human experience of finding beauty and humor in the face of death and pain. Strange Sensations: The Startling and Surreal in PAFA’s Permanent Collection will be on view through April 2, 2023.

In the fall of 2022, Making American Artists: Stories from the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, 1776–1976 will open at PAFA. Some of the most iconic works in the museum’s collection will be presented alongside pieces by traditionally underrepresented artists. The exhibit will examine what it meant to be an American artist when the institution was founded, as well as what it meant to be an American artist by the late-twentieth century. Making American Artists: Stories from the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, 1776–1976 will be on view October 6, 2022 through April 2, 2023.

The 19th Amendment: How Women Won the Vote at the National Constitution Center

Photo courtesy of the National Constitution Center.

2020 commemorated the centennial of the women’s suffrage movement and the ratification of the 19th Amendment, which guaranteed women the right to vote. The National Constitution Center chronicled this pivotal period in American history with the debut of a new permanent exhibit, The 19th Amendment: How Women Won the Vote, now on view. Inside the 3,000-square-foot exhibit, visitors will find nearly 100 artifacts that highlight some of the many influential women who were a prominent part of the 70-year movement, including Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Alice Paul, and Ida B. Wells.

U-2 Spy Planes & Aerial Archaeology at the Penn Museum

Ur, Iraq. One of the earliest cities in southern Iraq, the main settlement mounds of Ur (Tell al-Muqayyar) were surrounded by a wall that enclosed nearly 148 acres. Soil discoloration visible in the U-2 photographs suggest the city was originally much larger and incorporated several suburbs. Photo courtesy of Penn Museum.

U-2 Spy Planes & Aerial Archaeology opens August 20, 2022 at the Penn Museum, focusing on “top-secret aerial reconnaissance materials from the Cold War.” The exhibition will feature declassified photos captured in the 1950s and 1960s by the world’s most famous spy planes. U-2 Spy Planes & Aerial Archaeology uncovers the United States military’s intelligence gathering during that time using U-2s, which soared at altitudes that sometimes allowed them to avoid detection. This exhibition – stemming from a larger research project by scholars at Penn and Harvard – shows how archaeologists are able to use aerial and satellite images to recover lost histories, while yielding new insights today. U-2 Spy Planes & Aerial Archaeology is set to be on display through fall 2023.

Centennial Innovations, Albert M. Greenfield Makerspace, and Doc McStuffins: The Exhibit at the Please Touch Museum

Centennial-Innovations. Photo courtesy of Please Touch Museum.

Two new permanent exhibits are now on view at the Please Touch Museum in West Philadelphia. Inspired by the 1876 Centennial World’s Fair in Philadelphia — for which Memorial Hall, the home of the Please Touch Museum, was constructed — Centennial Innovations engages children throughout the space, asking them “If you could change the world… What would you create? Who would you become? What would a new world look like?” Centennial Innovations features several colorful installations and multi-sensory interactives, including a stage to share ideas and the City of Philadelphia’s historic Centennial Fairgrounds Model. The Albert M. Greenfield Makerspace is intentionally found just across from Centennial Innovations and continues children’s creative journey, exploring more of how kids are creating and empowering them as inventors. The Makerspace’s design is driven by STEM principles and features adjustable height workbenches and stools, as well as resources such as hammers, screwdrivers, drills, hot glue guns, measuring tape, and other tools that will aid in the child’s vision.

Disney Junior fans will get a kick out of Doc McStuffins: The Exhibit at the Please Touch Museum. The traveling exhibition is the first-ever children’s museum exhibit based on Disney Junior’s award-winning series, Doc McStuffins. Young learners are invited to help Doc and her friends care for the sick at the McStuffins Toy Hospital. Doc McStuffins: The Exhibit is on view through September 18, 2022. To plan your visit to the Please Touch Museum, click here.

This is My Home and truth* at the National Liberty Museum

This is My Home opens June 3, 2022 at the National Liberty Museum, allowing five artists to tell their stories, while inviting guests to recognize our shared humanity. Each immersive “home” will explore a different issue currently threatening liberty. Each artist will strive to create a space of understanding and empathy. This is My Home will be on view through October 30, 2022.

Opening September 9, 2022 truth* will examine how questions of truth lie at the heart of our social and political divide. This exhibit will explore how truth is defined, by whom, and for what purpose. Guests will be invited into an immersive and interactive space where current thoughts, questions, and debates will be brought into focus. With the help of tools to kickstart such critical conversations, “truth* invites us to consider how the quest for truth opens our minds to new ideas and perspectives, leading to a more connected and understanding world.” truth* will be on view September 9, 2022 through February 5, 2023.

Unseen and Spit Spreads Death: The Influenza Pandemic of 1918-19 in Philadelphia at the Mütter Museum

Unseen is a featured exhibition currently on view at the Mütter Museum. Photo courtesy of Mütter Museum.

The Mütter Museum — dedicated to displaying fascinating discoveries about the human body with unique specimens, models and instruments — has new exhibitions on view: Unseen and Spit Spreads Death: The Influenza Pandemic of 1918-19 in Philadelphia.

Unseen offers rare glimpses of 85% of the Mütter Museum‘s collection that is typically locked away in storage and not accessible to the public. Images taken by forensic photographer Nikki Johnson during a behind the scenes tour of the museum’s storage spaces and back rooms are on view in Thomson Hall alongside other rarely-seen items.

Philadelphia had the highest death rate of any major American city during the influenza pandemic of 1918–19. Spit Spreads Death: The Influenza Pandemic of 1918-19 in Philadelphia explores how neighborhoods in Philadelphia were impacted, how the disease spread, and what could happen in future pandemics.

Kyle Confehr: Process is the Product, (re)Frame: Community Perspectives on the Michener Art Collection, and Walk This Way: Footwear from the Stuart Weitzman Collection of Historic Shoes at Michener Art Museum

Philadelphia-based artist and designer Kyle Confehr blurs the lines between art and graffiti in his work. Using paint markers and aerosol cans of spray paint, Confehr creates large murals as he goes – free hand, without a set plan or outcome – therefore making his process, the product. An immersive street art experience, Kyle Confehr: Process is the Product will be on view at Michener Art Museum through October 9, 2022.

TIP: Keep an eye out for Confehr’s work throughout Philadelphia, including at the Philadelphia International Airport, the Fillmore club, and restaurants like Neighborhood Ramen and HoneyGrow.

Starting June 18, 2022, the Michener Art Museum will invite the community to help reinterpret the museum’s permanent collection through its exhibition called (re)Frame: Community Perspectives on the Michener Art Collection. Various “frames” will be spread out throughout the museum’s galleries, prompting visitors to share their own perspectives on selections from the museum’s collection. (re)Frame: Community Perspectives on the Michener Art Collection will take place June 18, 2022 through March 5, 2023.

Beginning September 24, 2022, more than 100 pairs of shoes will be on display at Michener Art Museum for Walk This Way: Footwear from the Stuart Weitzman Collection of Historic Shoes. This exhibit will focus on the women who designed, manufactured, sold, and collected footwear as shoes have become representations of culture. Walk This Way examines this phenomenon, and how shoes can express complicated meanings of femininity, power, and aspiration. Walk This Way: Footwear from the Stuart Weitzman Collection of Historic Shoes will be on view September 24, 2022 through January 15, 2023.

The Woodmere Annual: 80th Juried Exhibition at Woodmere Art Museum

Wall to the Ocean, 2021, by Marta Sanchez. Photo courtesy of the artist.

Every year, Woodmere Art Museum offers an annual exhibition which features the work of local artists, championing the contemporary art scene of Philadelphia. This year’s exhibition The Woodmere Annual: 80th Juried Exhibition showcases art that reflects themes of migration. More than 40 works of art including sculptures, paintings, videos, photos, and collages will be featured. Guests will be challenged to think about their own notions of place, belonging and identity. The Woodmere Annual: 80th Juried Exhibition will be on view through August 28, 2022.

Don’t miss out on Woodmere’s four ongoing exhibits: La Cresta: A Land-Sculpting Installation by Syd Carpenter and Steve Donegan inspired by the horticultural practice of hügelkulture and part of a larger landscape plan on Woodmere’s grounds, Expressionism in Bronze: The Sculpture of Viorel Farcas which delves into the emotional crossover from spiritual to physical through Viorel Farcas’ figurative, expressionist creations, Sculpture and Nature also known as “Woodmere’s Outdoor Wonder” which blends art, horticulture, and environmental science, and lastly, Free Interpretation of Plant Forms Harry Bertoia’s monumental fountain sculpture that was re-installed at Woodmere in partnership with the City of Philadelphia.

Narrative Terrain: Landscape as Storytelling and Jayson Musson: His History of Art at The Fabric Workshop and Museum

Now on view at The Fabric Workshop and Museum, Narrative Terrain: Landscape as Storytelling examines how landscape has been a source of artistic inspiration for centuries. Visitors will be challenged to expand their own understanding of how they relate to the world around them. Narrative Terrain: Landscape as Storytelling will be on view May 3 through October 23, 2022.

Jayson Musson: His History of Art opens July 22, 2022 at The Fabric Workshop and Museum and will explore the question: “In what ways can humor address inequality in the arts?” Jayson Musson, who became an internet sensation with his YouTube series ART THOUGHTZ, is known to incisively satirize both pop culture and art “insiders,” by exposing the elitism of the art world. His exhibit will investigate the ways popular art historical images impact our cultural conscienceness. Jayson Musson: His History of Art will be on view July 22 through November 13, 2022.

Pool: A Social History of Segregation at Fairmount Water Works

Pool: A Social History of Segregation investigates the role of public pools in the United States with the goal of deepening understanding of the connection between water, social justice and public health. Opening September 2021 in Philadelphia, situated in the former Kelly Pool (pictured, circa 1962) in the National Historic Landmark Fairmount Water Works. Visit poolphl.com for more information.

The historic Fairmount Water Works — once the sole water pumping station for the City of Philadelphia — reopened to the public on World Water Day, March 22, 2022, featuring a new, multi-disciplinary exhibition, Pool: A Social History of Segregation (POOL). POOL will be hosted in the former John B. Kelly swimming pool found within the historic building and will explore segregated swimming in the United States and the relationship between public pools, racial discrimination, public health, and social justice. The installations and experiences featured throughout the 4,700-square-foot exhibition will be comprised of audio and video vignettes of swimming icons, activists and scholars projected onto the surface of the pool, in addition to photographs, films and other work by Philadelphia-area artists. POOL will be on view through September 2022.

Sissel Tolaas: RE____, Carolyn Lazard: Long Take, and Terence Nance: Swarm at Institute of Contemporary Art

Opening September 16, 2022 at the Institute of Contemporary Art at the University of Pennsylvania, Sissel Tolaas: RE____ will expose audiences to air currents and smells from various sources as a way to challenge the idea of artwork as a physical object. Sissel Tolaas – an artist and smell researcher – believes smell is an important and underappreciated tool of communication. Through her work, Tolaas researches and explores the complex topic of smell, while using it as a medium of artistic expression. Tolaas activates a different type of engagement and perception in her audiences through smell because as invisible messages go to the brain, smells can trigger emotions and memories. Through this practice, concepts of process, time, and change run like a unifying thread. Sissel Tolaas: RE____ will be on view September 16 through December 30, 2022.

Carolyn Lazard: Long Take will open March 10, 2023 at ICA, marking the first US solo museum presentation of New York/Philadelphia-based artist and writer Carolyn Lazard’s work. In this exhibition, Lazard “responds to the legacy of dance for the camera, considered through the lens of accessibility as a creative tool.” Guests will experience the exhibition while listening to a sound installation of a dance within a gallery covered with vinyl flooring mats – just like those typically found in a dance studio. The artist presents the dance sonically rather than visually, and “intentionally blurs the boundaries between instruction, description, and translation, asking us to consider where and in what form an artwork resides.” Carolyn Lazard: Long Take will be on view March 10 through July 9, 2023.

Also on view at ICA March 10 through July 9, 2023 is filmmaker, writer, actor, and musician Terence Nance’s first solo exhibition, Terence Nance: Swarm. The exhibition will shine a spotlight on Nance’s interdisciplinary style. Nance’s film and media work includes Random Acts of Flyness, an HBO comedy series that examines contemporary Black life in America. The series also won a Peabody Award, which “honors excellence in storytelling that reflects the social issues and the emerging voices of our day.”

Derrick Adams: Sanctuary at The African American Museum in Philadelphia

The Road: Keep Your Head Down and Your Eyes Open, 2021. Courtesy Derrick Adams and Salon 94. Photo courtesy of African American Museum in Philadelphia.

Derrick Adams: Sanctuary at The African American Museum in Philadelphia (AAMP) consists of 50 works from mixed-media collages to sculpture. Through his pieces, Derrick Adams draws inspiration from The Green Book, while imagining safe destinations for the Black American traveler during the Jim Crow era in America. Guests are required to make a timed entry reservation. Derrick Adams: Sanctuary will be on view through August 28, 2022.

Becoming Weatherwise: A History of Climate Science in America at American Philosophical Society Library & Museum

The American Philosophical Society Library & Museum is located in Philadelphia's Old City. Photo by K. Huff for PHLCVB.

Becoming Weatherwise: A History of Climate Science in America at the American Philosophical Society Library & Museum explores the ways we study the weather and climate. The exhibit takes a closer look at the questions and methods that have driven weather- and climate-related research in the Western world from the mid-eighteenth century to today. Guests will also examine how ideas and views have changed over time. Studying the weather is critical to certain industries such as agriculture, as well as in the interest of human health and safety. Guests will also learn more about the role the American Philosophical Society and its members have had in the history of weather and climate study. Becoming Weatherwise: A History of Climate Science in America will be on view through December 31, 2022.

Gatecrashers: The Rise of the Self-Taught Artist in America and Fragile Earth: The Naturalist Impulse in Contemporary Art at the Brandywine River Museum of Art

Grandma Moses (Anna Mary Robertson Moses) (American, 1860–1961), Sugaring Off, 1943, oil on canvas, courtesy of Galerie St. Etienne, New York. © Grandma Moses Properties Co., New York.

Gatecrashers: The Rise of the Self-Taught Artist in America is now open at the Brandywine River Museum of Art. This exhibition celebrates self-taught artists who fundamentally changed the art world after World War I. Despite not having any formal art training, these early-twentieth century painters “crashed the gates” of major museums across the United States and by doing so, they diversified the art world across lines of race, ethnicity, class, ability, and gender. Featuring more than 50 works of art, this exhibition explores the remarkable ways that self-taught artists reshaped the idea of who could be considered an “artist” in the U.S. Gatecrashers: The Rise of the Self-Taught Artist in America will be on view through September 5, 2022.

Opening September 24, 2022, Fragile Earth: The Naturalist Impulse in Contemporary Art at the Brandywine River Museum of Art will showcase the wide range of approaches that ecologically concerned artists take to bring awareness to important environmental causes, while highlighting the powerful role that artists play in advocating for the planet. Fragile Earth: The Naturalist Impulse in Contemporary Art will be on view September 24, 2022 – January 8, 2023.

The Future Will Follow the Past: An Exhibition by Jonathan Horowitz at Weitzman National Museum of American Jewish History

Weitzman National Museum of American Jewish History. Photo by Barry Halkin/Halkin Photography.

The Weitzman National Museum of American Jewish History reopened May 13, 2022 with a special exhibition called The Future Will Follow the Past: An Exhibition by Jonathan Horowitz. The exhibit explores the transformative changes America has experienced since 2020, as well as the issues the country has been grappling with for decades, including antisemitism, racial violence, immigration, women’s rights, LGBTQ+ rights and more. The exhibit also offers new perspectives on history and raises questions related to themes, ideas, and events found in The Weitzman’s core exhibition, which interprets over 360 years of American Jewish life. The Future Will Follow the Past: An Exhibition by Jonathan Horowitz will be on view through December 2022.

Making Place Matter at The Clay Studio

Molly Hatch, Philadelphia Waterworks (detail), 65 inches (165 cm) in height, hand-thrown, hand-painted porcelain plates, underglaze, glaze, gold luster, 2021. Photo by John Polak. Courtesy of the artist and Todd Merrill Studio. Making Place Matter, The Clay Studio, www.theclaystudio.org, South Kensington, Philadelphia, PA, opening Spring 2022.

Now open in its new home in South Kensington, The Clay Studio is welcoming visitors to explore its Inaugural Exhibition Making Place Matter. The exhibit features work by Peruvian-born artist Kukuli Velarde, American-born, Massachusetts-based artist Molly Hatch, and Egyptian American artist Ibrahim Said, now based in North Carolina. Through the use of clay, each artist explores the idea of place with regard to personal history, cultural heritage, and social justice. Making Place Matter will be on view through October 2, 2022.

The Big Graph and Prisons Today: Questions in the Age of Mass Incarceration at Eastern State Penitentiary

The Big Graph at Eastern State Penitentiary. Photo by R. Hashem.

A new column representing 2020 incarceration rates has been added to The Big Graph at Eastern State Penitentiary. The Big Graph is a 16-foot-tall, 3,500-pound plate steel sculpture illustrating three sets of statistics: the unprecedented growth in U.S. incarceration rates since 1900, the racial breakdown of the American prison population in 1970 and today, and every nation in the world charted both by rate of incarceration and by policies around capital punishment. The Big Graph is on view during all public hours. Prisons Today: Questions in the Age of Mass Incarceration is a companion exhibit to The Big Graph. Prisons Today: Questions in the Age of Mass Incarceration sheds light on the issues surrounding incarceration. With 2.2 million citizens in prison or jail, the U.S. has the highest incarceration rate in the world – a phenomenon driven by changes in laws, policing, and sentencing, not by changes in behavior. The exhibit also highlights how poor and disenfranchised communities (mostly communities of color) have been disproportionately impacted throughout these historic changes, which remain nearly invisible to many Americans. Prisons Today: Questions in the Age of Mass Incarceration is also open to visitors during all public tour hours.

Sunny Days & Lonely Nights at Corridor Contemporary

Sunny Days & Lonely Nights – a solo exhibition of works by Bronx-based artist Anthony Rondinone – opens on July 8, 2022 at Corridor Contemporary in Fishtown. Through his vibrant pieces, the artist creatively tackles what he calls a juxtaposition of the two very different sides in New York City: poverty and wealth, a contrast that he says creates an unhealthy dynamic and distorted view of one another. “As a child growing up in the Bronx, it always seemed so strange to me how different these worlds are even though they’re only a few subway stops away,” Anthony Rondinone says, ”How similar are we when you really dive deep? How different? As an artist, I get to explore each group and this relationship.” Sunny Days & Lonely Nights will be on view through August 28, 2022.

Art for All: The Swedish Experience in Mid-America at the American Swedish Historical Museum

Birger Sandzén, Sunset in the Mountains, 1923, Birger Sandzén Memorial Gallery. Photo courtesy of American Swedish Historical Museum.

Opening July 21, 2022 at the American Swedish Historical Museum, the oldest Swedish museum in the United States, Art for All: The Swedish Experience in Mid-America will showcase paintings and sculptures by Swedish-American artists of the late-19th and early-20th centuries. This exhibition will be full of color and emotive Impressionist art reflecting its own time, while interpreting nature and landscape. By the 1930s, “Art for all” had become a catchphrase as local artists strived to offer afforadable paintings so that every person could have art in their home. Guests will learn more about how these young artists left a significant impact on their communities and American art while exploring the exhibit. Art for All: The Swedish Experience in Mid-America will be on view July 21, 2022 through February 19, 2023.

Cover photo: Liberty: Don Troiani’s Paintings of the Revolutionary War at the Museum of the American Revolution. Photo by K. Huff for PHLCVB.

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