Pack your Philly fall schedule with these museum exhibits

Fall museums in Philly
Minah Kim.
The Clay Studio

It’s the changing of the seasons in the city, and this fall, there are plenty of ways to explore different museums throughout Philadelphia. 

For one, this Friday (Sept. 15), the Philadelphia Magic Gardens will be opening ‘Wildest Dreams’ by Ivorian-American artist Zeinab Diomande. Through this showcase, the artist explores Black womanhood through vulnerable self-portraits in her inventive multimedia works by using high-contrasting colors and vibrant patterns to create celebratory and electric works, according to a release. 

An opening reception at the Philadelphia Magic Gardens (1020 South St.,) will take place from 6 to 9 p.m. this Friday, and then to get a bit deeper into the exhibit, there will also be a Tour & Talk with Zeinab Diomande on Tuesday, Sept. 19. 

fall museums Philly
A strange sense of nothingness from Zeinab Diomande.Philadelphia Magic Gardens

Over at The Science History Institute (315 Chestnut St.,) a different focused showcase titled BOLD: Color from Test Tube to Textile opens later this month on Sept. 22, and will explore the history of textile dyes. 

As a release states, while there, museum visitors will take a colorful journey through more than 150 years of natural and synthetic dye-making, with stops at coal mines, factory floors, and fashion runways. Drawing on dye sample books, vivid clothing, and unique instruments, ‘BOLD’ documents the scientific and cultural trajectory of color from the earliest dyes, through the mass-marketed color revolutions of the 20th century, and into the more environmentally minded present.

Those who are interested in checking out what ‘BOLD’ has to offer can also head to a public reception on opening day from 5 to 8 p.m., and the event will feature a curator’s talk, hands-on crafts, pop-up displays, light refreshments, and a prize for the most vibrant outfit.

Another fall museum exhibit coming to Philly is from The Clay Studio (1425 N. American St.), and it features the work of 12 Korean artists. Opening Oct. 12, ‘Between Horizons’ utilizes ceramic art where “the artists explore how the geographic change influenced their identities as artists, the impact of experiencing new cultures on their practice, and how they see themselves after living in two distinct societies.”

While there, Philadelphians will be able to explore works by Ahrong Kim, YehRim Lee, Sunkoo Yuh, Soojin Choi, Minah Kim, Jinsik Yoo Sukjin Choi, Joon Hee Kim, Yeonsoo Kim, Gunyoung Kim, Jae Won Lee, and Kyungmin Park in The Clay Studio’s Jill Bonovitz Gallery through Dec. 31.

fall museum Philly
Ahrong KimThe Clay Studio

Another way to experience art this Fall in the city comes from the 96th Annual Rittenhouse Fine Arts Festival, which takes place this year from Sept. 15 to 17. While there, Philadelphians will be able to check out 145 professional artists from around the country and Canada while they exhibit their originals-only fine artwork around the perimeter of the park. 

Over at the Woodmere Art Museum (9201 Germantown Ave.,) on the other hand, Philadelphians can view their latest exhibit, ‘Barbara Bullock: Fearless Vision’ beginning Sept. 23. This showcase highlights Bullock’s paintings and drawings of the late 1960s and 1970s, plus the cut, painted, and sculpted works in heavy-weight paper she is known for today.

“An aspect of Bullock’s studio practice going back to the 1960s and central to the thesis of this exhibition is that she has always understood the power of art as a force of active, social agency that shapes people’s lives,” said William Valerio, Ph.D., The Patricia Van Burgh Allison Director and CEO of Woodmere Art Museum in a statement. “We are very fortunate to collaborate so intimately with Bullock and share this exhibition with Woodmere’s visitors.”

And as a release states, ‘Fearless Vision’ also shows how Bullock’s studio practice evolved in dialogue with her work as both educator and social activist, exploring the cross-fertilization of ideas about art and social healing.

Chestnut Hill
Woodmere Art Museum.Daryl Moran

Lastly, ThePennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts (118-128 N Broad St.,) is also opening a new showcase this fall. ‘Determined To Be: The Sculpture of John Rhoden’ will open on Oct. 5, and it celebrates 20th-century African-American sculptor John Rhoden by showcasing the first comprehensive retrospective of the artist’s work. 

“We’re excited to present ‘Determined to Be: The Sculpture of John Rhoden’ to our audiences,” says PAFA President and CEO Eric Pryor in a statement. “This unique exhibition, the culmination of years of dedicated work by our staff, continues PAFA’s long tradition of contributing to and expanding the diverse history of American art, while shining a light on a less well-known African American artist and bringing new stories to our visitors.”

In 2017 PAFA was selected by the John Rhoden Estate to assume the responsibility of preserving and promoting John Rhoden’s artistic legacy—The Rhoden Collection includes over 300 works of art and 22 linear feet of archival materials, a release finishes. Philadelphians can see it all first as well at the opening reception on the 5th from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. with advanced registration.