Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts
The Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts (PAFA) is located on Broad Street, just a few blocks north of City Hall. PAFA is both an art school and a museum, a rare combination. The original Historic Landmark Building is a magnificent structure designed by Frank Furness. The second, newer Hamilton building houses the school as well as gallery space.
Why Robin likes it:
I love the architecture and design of the building, with its amazing attention to detail in the ceiling, stairways, arches, and walls. There are paintings, sculptures, and contemporary works of all fine art media. Knowledgeable docents, and something new every time you visit.
Why YOU will like it:
- The architecture of the Historic Landmark Building is jaw-droppingly beautiful.
- PAFA has an extensive collection of American Art, beginning in the early 1800s, includes many works by the school’s alumni and faculty.
- A gift in 2010 of over 500 works of art by 150 women means that women artists and artists of color are better represented and presented at PAFA than in most museums.
- The museum gift shop, in the Hamilton building, includes a good variety of items, at a variety of price points.
- There’s a small but comfortable café on site called Tableau that also has outdoor seating.
- The staff at the front desks are usually artists who are happy to talk about their own work.
Is this a possible wedding venue?
Yes! Both buildings are available for wedding rentals.
Why you might want to have your wedding or reception here: Your guests will be able to visit the galleries AND while they toast your happiness. PAFA is located right on Broad Street, near many houses of worship.
The museum is accessible via elevators and there are wheelchairs available on a first come/first served basis. Service animals are welcome, and there are large print label available at the front desk.
Is it good for kids?
Depends on the kid. PAFA is mostly a “see” rather than “touch” activity. That said, they do offer school group tours for all ages.
PAFA 118-128 North Broad Street
Philadelphia, PA 19102