Look no further than our monthly With Art Picks for your best bets on the local art scene in Philadelphia, including major players like the Philadelphia Museum of Art alongside smaller galleries and art organizations. (Photo by G. Widman for Visit Philadelphia)
With so much happening on Philadelphia’s arts and culture scene, we want to make Uwishunu, in conjunction with sister site With Art Philadelphia, your one-stop-shop for all that’s happening with local art.
Every month, we gather our top art picks, featuring exhibits and events at smaller, alternative galleries and art spaces, as well as at the city’s major art institutions.
In the midst of your Mardi Gras and St. Patrick’s Day celebrations this month, don’t forget to raise a toast to the arts.
Below, find our top picks for arts happenings this March:
• Native American Voices: The People – Here and Now: Opening March 1, Penn Museum, 3260 South Street. Through interactive displays and video presentations, a new exhibition at the Penn Museum examines the current political state of Native Americans. Including a collection of Lenape tools and art from the Delaware Valley region, the show explores past and present struggles and successes through a five-year rotating display of pieces representing 85 tribes.
• Treasures from Korea: Arts and Culture of the Joseon Dynasty, 1392-1910: Opening March 2, Philadelphia Museum of Art, 26th Street and the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. If you find yourself lacking travel funds, then a trip to the art museum will take you around the world in 72 steps. Introduce yourself to the artwork of the Joseon Dynasty, a 500 year-long era in Korean history that saw the reign of 27 monarchs and left behind a wealth of painted screens, calligraphy, furnishings and costumes. A majority of the works on display come directly from the National Museum of Korea, but also include pieces from public and private collections.
• Spring Festival: Opening March 7, Indy Hall, 22 N. 3rd Street. Indy Hall celebrates the return of spring with a three-month-long festival. A series of exhibitions featuring local sculpture, literature, and fashion design transform the space from co-working to creative. The festival kicks off this month with Presence, an exhibition co-curated by Philadelphia Sculpture Gym’s Darla Jackson.
• In Bloom: The Fashion for Florals: Saturday, March 8, 9:45 a.m., URBN Center Annex, 3401 Filbert Street. Satisfy your springtime craving with more than just the Philadelphia Flower Show this March, with a talk by Drexel Historic Costume Collection curator Clare Sauro. Every girl’s closet is a garden just waiting to bloom, but this presentation will take you back through the history of fashion florals with an exclusive look at garments in the DHCC collection. Proceeds from the event benefit the collection.
• Shattering Expectations: Mosaic 2014: Opening March 7, Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens, 1020 South Street. Get even more mosaics at the Magic Gardens with an exhibition celebrating the region’s top tile-turners. The work of eight artists paves the way to a better understanding of this delicately delirious art style.
• Renewal Street: Opening March 10, Jed Williams Gallery, 615 Bainbridge Street. Street art visits the gallery space with an exhibition of work by Anthony C. and Karen M. The Philly-educated art duo approaches political art with a punk rock attitude, hanging public works made from cardboard and found wood and at times encouraging passersby to “steal” their work.
• The Classical Tradition in Chinese Architecture and the Beaux-Arts: Wednesday, March 12, 6-8 p.m., The Athenaeum of Philadelphia, 219 S. Sixth Street. While you can take in an abundance of architectural beauty just by stepping out of your front door, a trip to the Athenaeum will expand your knowledge of eastern traditions. The lecture with Nancy S. Steinhardt, Professor of East Asian Art and Curator of Chinese Art at the University of Pennsylvania, delves into the tumultuous period of the 1920s to 40s, when the first students of western architecture introduced European styles to China.
• Greenhouse Mix and Noise: Opening March 20, Philadelphia Art Alliance, 251 S. 18th Street. Whether you find yourself taking scenic shots of Fairmount Park or spending the holiday season strolling through Longwood Gardens, explore your love of local gardening at the Philadelphia Art Alliance. Inspired by the legacy of botanist John Bartram, Caroline Lathan-Stiefel’s installation decks the gallery and stairway in landscaping luxury. The concurrent exhibition featuring work by Sam Cusumano explores the intersection of technology and the natural world through interactive sound pieces.
• American Scenes: WPA-era Prints of the 1930s and 40s: Wednesday, March 21, 5-7 p.m., La Salle University Art Museum, 1900 W. Olney Avenue. History buffs, it’s time for a change: from museum to gallery. A series of prints from the Works Progress Administration gives an artists’ eye view into the Dust Bowl era and the leisure and labor of ’30s and ’40s Americans.
• African Textiles Past and Present: Sunday, March 23, Barnes Foundation, 2025 Benjamin Franklin Parkway. The history of weaving in Africa stems from traditions dealing with spirituality and identity. A lecture at the Barnes with Alisa LaGamma, curator in charge of the Department of the Arts of Africa, Oceania, and the Americas at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, ties this long practice into modern-day African art. The talk runs in conjunction with the Yinka Shonibare exhibition on display through April 21.
• Mural Preservation and Restoration: Sunday, March 30, 2 p.m. at PAFA, 118-128 N. Broad Street. If you’re a native Philadelphian, you’re probably well aware of the “city of murals” claim-to-fame. But if you’re more impressed by quality over quantity, a lecture at PAFA will restore your faith by taking you through the difficult process that goes into mural restoration and preservation.
• Frost: Through April 18, The Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education, 8480 Hagy’s Mill Road. In the “if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em” tradition, artists Amie Potsic and Nany Agati have taken the onslaught of winter storms as inspiration for their show at the Schuylkill Center. Using a mix of photography, installation and mixed media, the artists explore the human connection to the natural world.