Guest Posts, Pennsylvania, USA

Most Interesting Art Museums in Philadelphia

This is a guest post by Shilpa Balakrishnan who was featured in our Off the Radar Travel Interviews on her travels to Bali, Indonesia. She gives us great insight on the most interesting Art Museums in Philadelphia

Philadelphia has been an epicenter for art – from carefully curated art galleries to historic museums. The regions artistic mile extends from City Hall to the Philadelphia Museum of Art. While many visitors head to the major museums like the City Hall and the Independence Hall, the art centers have an equally impressive collection of historic art works featuring famous artists of the 19th century. Take an art tour to delve into the art scene of Philadelphia.

Explore the Museum of Art

Philadelphia Museum of Art

Philadelphia Museum of Art Photo by Very Hungry Traveller via

Located at the end of the famous Benjamin Franklin Parkway, the Museum of Art boasts a vast collection of over 227,000 art works. This impressive collection including paintings, sculptures, decorative arts and architectural settings inspired from Latin America, Europe, and Asia. Some of the major highlights in the museum are the Cezanne’s Large Bathers as well as the Rogier van der Weyden altarpiece. Boasting one of the largest art collections in the United States, you might want to plan for a couple of days to see everything. Since most hotels in Philadelphia are located in the area, you’ll find no trouble in planning your trip around the famous art landmarks.

Learn the Masonic History

Masonic Temple

Masonic Temple Photo by Very Hungry Traveller via

Walk across the street from City Hall to one of the most magnificent buildings in Philly – the Masonic Temple. Operated by the Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania, the library offers opulent interiors adorned with marble floors and intricate oak detailing. Observe some of the prominent pieces like George Washington’s Masonic apron and Benjamin Franklin’s commemorative china. The Library exhibits an array of historic artifacts and treasures such as porcelain, antique glass, and jewelry. To get a detailed insight, consider signing up for a guided tour offered from Mondays to Fridays.

Discover the Art of Mixed Media

Art aficionados will love the contemporary art displayed at the Fabric Workshop and Museum. These artworks are created from various materials, particularly fabrics. Initially, the students and artists at the workshop explored silkscreen printing on fabrics. Over the years, new materials and techniques were introduced. At the museum, you’ll get to see different mediums of work by well-known artists like Robert Venturi and Robert Morris.

Study the Works of Impressionists

Your visit to Philly is incomplete without a trip to view the Barnes collection at the Barnes Foundation. The museum displays the art works of Renoirs, Matisse, Van Gough and many others collected by Albert Barnes. Its artistic factors are not the only elements to consider, but the museum also vows by a number of sustainable features like the green roof and permeable surfaces.

Be sure to book the tickets in advance as you may have to wait in long queues on certain days. Ask for a complimentary audio guide to better understand the collection. The museum houses an on-site restaurant that serves lunch.

Witness the Art Festivals

If you’re an art lover, make sure you’re around to take part in the free First Friday of every month, where you’ll get to meet and greet many like-minded art lovers.

Author Bio: Shilpa Balakrishnan is a travel writer who enjoys writing about her travels to offbeat places – explored from a local’s perspective. She holds a master’s degree in Finance, but rather uses the math lessons to plan a trip on a budget. Apart from writing for her website The Satori Saga, she also works for Hipmunk on the City Love Project and you can follow her on Facebook and Twitter. She also shares her experiences through illustrations inspired from her travels.

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