The PAFA collection is displayed in a chronological and thematic format, tracing American art history from the 1760s to now. Holdings include work by leading American artists, such as Cecilia Beaux, William Merritt Chase, Frank Duvenek, Thomas Eakins, Winslow Homer, Childe Hassam, and Edmund Tarbell, and The Eight, which includes PAFA alumni Robert Henri and John Sloan.
The collecting tradition has continued, adding works by modern and contemporary American artists such as Jennifer Bartlett, Richard Diebenkorn, Nancy Graves, Alex Katz, Robert Motherwell, and Frank Stella. Acquisitions and exhibition programs balance historical and contemporary art, and the museum continues to show works by contemporary regional artists and features annual displays of work by PAFA students.
The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts was founded in 1805 and has been housed in the current Historic Landmark Building -- designed by architects Frank Furness and George W. Hewitt -- since 1876.
Whether you go or not: Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, 1805-2005: 200 Years of Excellence, tells the story of America's oldest museum and school of fine arts, founded in Philadelphia in 1805. Celebrating two centuries of the Academy's achievement, six scholarly essays document the history of the institution and its collections, curriculum, and buildings. In addition, 220 masterpieces of American art from the permanent collection are presented in full color with descriptions of each.
Philadelphia’s significant contributions to visual culture in the 1950s through the 1970s
Examines Philadelphia's key role in the growth of American landscape painting
Showcases 10 local photographers who apprenticed with acclaimed photographer Muholi
Drawings, prints, and interactive sculptures consider what is valued, forgotten, cherished, and taken for granted
Prints by artists associated with the American Etching Revival and Impressionism
Sculptures and installations made from materials sourced throughout the world