As the first art museum and school in the United States, PAFA celebrates the transformative power of art and art-making
The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts is a museum and art school in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It was founded in 1805 and is the first and oldest art museum and art school in the United States. The academy's museum is internationally known for its collections of 19th- and 20th-century American paintings, sculptures, and works on paper. Its archives house important materials for the study of American art history, museums, and art training.
Since its founding, the Academy has collected works by leading American artists, as well as works by distinguished alumni and faculty of its school. Today, the Academy maintains its collecting tradition with the inclusion of works by modern and contemporary American artists. Acquisitions and exhibition programs are balanced between historical and contemporary art, and the museum continues to show works by contemporary regional artists and features annual displays of work by Academy students. The collection is installed in a chronological and thematic format, exploring the history of American art from the 1760s to the present.
PAFA's museum is internationally known for its permanent collection of American art. Our permanent collection ranges from 18th- and 19th-century masters such as Benjamin West, Thomas Eakins, Winslow Homer, and Mary Cassatt, to modern and contemporary artists including Charles Demuth, Jacob Lawrence, Alice Neel, Vik Muniz, Mickalene Thomas, and Kehinde Wiley.
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