artist Arcmanoro Niles standing between paintings in studio

After graduating from PAFA with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in 2013, award-winning painter and Washington, D.C. native Arcmanoro Niles has gone on to exhibit in solo and group shows around the United States, China, Costa Rica, and Ireland—including an upcoming show at ICA Boston in 2022—and his works…

Joan Semmel's Centered Oil on canvas 48 x 53 in
The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (PAFA) presents the first-ever retrospective of iconic painter Joan Semmel in a career-spanning exhibition, Joan Semmel: Skin in the Game, October 28, 2021 through April 3, 2022. With over 50 works that will trace the artist’s career from early abstract…
Press Release

Edward Tabor shares the discovery of hidden illustrated books in Harvard's Botanical Museum and how it connects to Shakespear and a PAFA student from the 1970's.    "These paintings illustrated all of the plants mentioned by Shakespeare, and they showed how extensive Shakespeare’s knowledge of…

In the News
Camp Still Life

PAFA has partnered with the Satell Institute – a Philadelphia-based Think and Do Tank dedicated to Corporate Social Responsibility - in their YES (Youth Enrichment Series) Initiative in 2021, to provide free scholarships to any student who wanted to learn safely and socially online over the summer…


The 2020-21 school year was an extraordinary time, and PAFA students, faculty & staff faced it with creativity and resilience. Thanks to the diligent efforts of everyone on campus, the PAFA community remained safe and strong, and because of those efforts, the campus will be open this fall.  As…

Global Optimization Diagram installed in Taking Space
Artist Ana Vizcarra Rankin graduated from the Master of Fine Art program in 2012. She received the Judith McGregor Caldwell Purchase Prize at the Annual Student Exhibition in May 2012 for her work Global Optimization Diagram. The painting is on view at the museum in “Taking Space: Contemporary Women…
Artwork documentation of Man in Blue Looking Eileen Neff

If you visit this weekend, you can find a man in a blue hazmat suit within the walls of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. He isn’t concerned with an airborne virus; rather his suit protects him from toxic fumes of arsenic that float around his meticulously designed surroundings. This man inhabits a…

Florine Stettheimer, (1871-1944) "Picnic at Bedford Hills" (1918)

Thomas Hine's review of the recently opened exhibition Women in Motion: 150 Years of Womens Artistic Networks at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts will delight the art history lovers.

"The premise of the show, as suggested in its subtitle, is that women needed to develop networks — which…

In the News
Gallery view of Jerusalem in museum
Watch a timelapse video of the process. Weighing nearly 3,600 pounds and with a pedestal that is roughly between 2,300-2,600 pounds, and made of breakable marble, the statue risks damage if not handled with the required care and expertise.
Painting by Nasir Young Day to Day

Nasir Young had a busy start to the summer. He opened his first full collection at PAFA’s Annual Student Exhibition, sold all 13 pieces, and graduated as the Undergraduate Commencement speaker.

Nasir’s collection for ASE featured numerous Philadelphia cityscapes, many in oil. “I’m still stumped…

Anne E. McCollum profile
The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts is pleased to announce the election of Anne E. McCollum as the organization's new chairperson of the Board of Trustees. McCollum will succeed Kevin Donohoe as the first female leader of America's first art museum and school. Donohoe will remain on the board…
Press Release

As we noted in April, the College is planning to be more fully on campus this fall and a return to near-normal capacities in Stiles Hall. We also want to be part of the solution to ending this pandemic, just as our campus has played a meaningful role in containing the virus’s spread. As a critical…

About PAFA

Founded in 1805, the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts is America's first school and museum of fine arts. A recipient of the National Medal of Arts, PAFA offers undergraduate and graduate programs in the fine arts, innovative exhibitions of historic and contemporary American art, and a world-class collection of American art. PAFA’s esteemed alumni include Mary Cassatt, Njideka Akunyili Crosby, Thomas Eakins, William Glackens, Barkley L. Hendricks, Violet Oakley, Louis Kahn, David Lynch, and Henry Ossawa Tanner.