Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts


  • Tuesday through Saturday, 10am-5pm
  • Sunday, 11am-5pm

Founded in 1805, PAFA is the oldest Museum and School of Fine Art in the United States, and continues to train the next generation of artists every day.  At PAFA, you can explore both the ornate Historic Landmark Building, built in 1876, and the contemporary Samuel M. V. Hamilton Building—both located just a few blocks North of Philadelphia’s City Hall.

The Historic Building houses PAFA’s collection of American art ranging from the 1700s to today.  When you walk through the galleries, you’ll experience a jewel box of colors as you view historical American paintings and sculptures, alongside contemporary artist installations.  You might even spot one of PAFA’s art students painting or drawing in the galleries! And if you do, please feel free to ask them questions about their work. Be sure to stop by the Historic Building beginning in October 2013 to check out a temporary 9-foot sculpture and special exhibit by  internationally celebrated artist KAWS.

From the Historic Building, you can walk across Lenfest Plaza and take in two fantastic public sculptures: A 51-foot Paint Torch sculpture created by renowned artist Claes Oldenburg; and a former US military plane, Grumman Greenhouse, turned into a sculpture that houses plants by PAFA alumnus Jordan Griska.

The Hamilton Building is just on the other side of Lenfest Plaza and is home to PAFA’s major temporary exhibitions, as well as exhibits featuring work by current PAFA students and their faculty.  This year, you can see the special exhibition, Beyond the Paint: Philadelphia’s Mural Arts here.

There’s so much to see and do when you visit PAFA.  We invite you to come and see for yourself, and to think about how artists across the decades have expressed themselves creatively about major issues in American history such as the Civil War, labor issues, environmental concerns, and equal rights.  What are important issues to you and how would you choose to express your ideas and feelings through art?

CLICK HERE to read about STAMP Teen Council member Amani’s first visit to PAFA!


118-128 N. Broad Street, just two blocks north of City Hall.


Market/Frankford Line: Take the Blue Line (Market/Frankford) to 15th Street Station. Walk one block north to Arch Street. Then walk one block east to Broad Street. Make a left on Broad Street. The Pennsylvania Academy is one block north at the corner of Broad and Cherry Streets.
Broad Street Subway: Take the train to the Race/Vine stop. Exit the station on Race and Broad Streets. Walk one block south (toward City Hall) on Broad Street. The Pennsylvania Academy is at the corner of Broad and Cherry Streets.
Regional Rail: All lines of the regional rail system stop at the Market East Train Station. Exit the station on Market Street and walk west (toward City Hall) until you reach Broad Street and turn right. The Museum is one block down on the left at the northeast corner of Broad and Cherry Streets.


The gift shop, Portfolio, is located in the Hamilton Building. The café is located in the Historic Landmark Building.


Photography is permitted in the Historic Landmark Building only. No flash.

Find the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts on Facebook and follow them on Twitter and Instagram @pafacademy.