Points of View Speaker Series

The Points of View Speaker Series brings experts from all over together for engaging and thought-provoking discussions that cross disciplines, provoke curiosity, and explore the transformative power of art and art-making.

Registration fees include access to the Museum galleries and exhibitions all day. The Points of View Speaker Series is always free for PAFA Members.


Upcoming Events

Community Education

September 28, 2019 - 2:00pm to 3:00pm

Talk and Book Signing: The Landscapes of a New Nation

From the Declaration of Independence until the Centennial Exhibition in 1876, Philadelphia was an important site for landscape painting traditions that ultimately shaped the better-known Hudson River School movement.

Cost: $15 General Admission // Free for members

Location: Rhoden Arts Center, Samuel M.V. Hamilton Building

Community Education

October 5, 2019 - 7:00pm to 8:00pm

Points of View Speaker Series: Andrea Wulf: The Invention of Nature

Andrea Wulf’s bestselling book The Invention of Nature: Alexander von Humboldt’s New World won literary awards and honors around the globe. Wulf tells the story of intrepid explorer Humboldt, the most famous naturalist of his day, who turned scientific observation into poetic narrative, and whose writings inspired naturalists, poets, painters, and politicians. Upon the 250th anniversary of Humboldt’s birth, Wulf brings the “father of environmentalism” back to life and sheds light on his extraordinary contributions to our understanding of the natural world. This program is presented with The German Society of Philadelphia, whose commissioned sculpture of Humboldt is located on Martin Luther King Driver near Black Road in Philadelphia.

Cost: $20 General admission/ $10 PAFA and German Society Member

Location: Rhoden Arts Center, Samuel M.V. Hamilton Building

Community Education

October 17, 2019 - 6:00pm to 7:00pm

Black Magic with Rashaad Newsome

Multidisciplinary artist Rashaad Newsome will be in conversation with curator Jasmine Wahi about Newsome’s Black Magic, a project in two cities (Philadelphia/New York) that reflects on Blackness, gender, and futurity. Black Magic’s Philadelphia events include To Be Real, a multimedia exhibition at Philadelphia Photo Arts Center curated by Wahi that meditates on the contemporary magic and radical future of artificial intelligence.

Cost: Free / Registration required

Location: Rhoden Arts Center

Community Education

October 26, 2019 - 2:00pm to 3:30pm

Points of View Speaker Series: City Water, City Life

In City Water, City Life, historian and author Carl Smith explores the development of the first successful waterworks systems in Philadelphia, Boston, and Chicago between the 1790s and the 1860s. Smith shows how the discussion, design, and use of waterworks reveal how Americans framed their conceptions of urban democracy and how they understood the natural and the built environment, individual health and the well-being of society, and the qualities of time and history. Smith is the Franklyn Bliss Snyder Professor of English & American Studies at Northwestern University. This program is presented with the Philadelphia Water Works.

Cost: $15/ Free for Members.

Location: Rhoden Arts Center, Samuel M.V. Hamilton Building

Community Education

November 9, 2019 - 2:00pm to 3:30pm

Points of View Speaker Series: Stories of the River with Beth Kephart

The Schuylkill River has run through the dreams and ambitions of Philadelphia and her guests—the walkers, the rowers, the philosophers and politicians and scientists. Philadelphia-area writer Beth Kephart has been writing the river for more than a decade—in an “autobiography” called Flow: The Life and Times of Philadelphia’s Schuylkill River, in Centennial-era novels, in works of journalism and in essays. Kephart will share river-rich scenes of her own before opening the conversation to participants to share river stories of their own.

Cost: $15/ Free for Members.

Location: Rhoden Arts Center, Samuel M.V. Hamilton Building

Community Education

December 7, 2019 - 1:30pm to 4:30pm

Points of View Speaker Series: Public Dialogues: Landscapes Are Not Neutral

Landscapes show more than just the beauty of the natural environment – they also reveal the biases, agendas and historical problems of the times from which they come. This afternoon of expert talks seeks to acknowledge the missing stories and difficult narratives embedded in early American landscape traditions of representation, bringing to the foreground the role of native populations, women, and people of color during the early years of the American experiment.

Cost: $25 // $10 PAFA members and students

Location: Rhoden Arts Center, Samuel M.V. Hamilton Building