Our Top Picks For First Friday In Philadelphia With Mariachi Music At The PMA, An Anniversary Exhibit At Snyderman-Works , Screening Under The Stars And More, Friday, May 1

Philadelphia Museum of Art
Every Friday — including Friday,May 1 — Art After 5 at the Philadelphia Museum of Art offers up the chance to get down in the Great Stair Hall. (Photo courtesy Philadelphia Museum of Art)

It’s time to celebrate the weekend, arts and urban nightlife as another First Friday arrives in neighborhoods throughout Philadelphia.

Body graphics and graphic novels, psychological dinner parties and haunted history tours. It’s your typically memorable First Friday in springtime Philadelphia.

Remember, beyond our picks there’s tons more action on arts corridors in Old City and Fishtown, in particular.

Our May First Friday picks, below.

First Friday! Red Light Jazz

Friday, May 1, 6-9 p.m. The Barnes Foundation, 2025 Benjamin Franklin Parkway. The Barnes Foundation hosts a springtime bash this Friday, May 1 as it celebrates First Friday and the art of fraktur, a Pennsylvania German style of illuminated manuscript folk art that is the subject of three exhibitions at the Free Library of Philadelphia, Winterthur and the Philadelphia Museum of Art. From 6 to 9 p.m., hang out at The Barnes after hours, enjoy live performances from Escape 10 Duo, sip drinks and fill up on small plates from a cash bar. Tickets are $25 for non-museum members and free for members. MORE INFO

Art After 5

Friday, May 1, 5-8:45 p.m. Philadelphia Museum of Art, Great Stair Hall, 2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway. Every Friday night, art lovers can take in the superb collections of the Philadelphia Museum of Art in a festive after-dark affair with live music, a cash bar and late hours. This Friday, it’s a Mexican dance party with all-female mariachi band, Mariachi Flor de Toloache. Gallery tours are offered throughout the evening, too, and there is no additional charge for performances or guided tours after museum admission. MORE INFO

Snyderman-Works 50th Anniversary Exhibition

Friday, May 1, 6-8 p.m., Snyderman-Works Galleries, 303 Cherry Street. A staple of the Old City gallery scene, Snyderman-Works Galleries hits 50 years this May. In an exhibition curated by Evan Snyderman, turn a golden eye on the history of the impactful arts venue. MORE INFO

Natural Impulses

Friday, May 1, 5:30-7:30 p.m., Locks Gallery, 600 Washington Square South. While the city is celebrating the Philadelphia Science Festival, Locks Gallery is celebrating science art. Four artists take experimental media to a whole new level, with a series of works that draw on electricity, honeybees, and other natural processes to create via creation. MORE INFO

First Friday
Old City bustles with art shows both in galleries and along sidewalks on the First Friday of the month. (Photo by M. Kennedy for Visit Philadelphia)

More First Friday picks, below.


Friday, May 1, 7-11 p.m., Body Graphics Inc, 30 South Second Street. For a local animation grad, Monique Ligons has one impressive resume. Having worked on Richard Linklater’s Scanner Darkly as well as a music video for They Might Be Giants, among other notable projects, she now brings her work to a gallery show at Body Graphics. The evening also includes burlesque performances and light refreshments. MORE INFO

Graphic & Novel

Friday, May 1, 6 -9 p.m., AIGA Philadelphia SPACE, 72 N. Second Street. Superheroes unite to serve not justice, but art this First Friday. An exhibition at AIGA this May celebrates the often overlooked artform of the comic book. MORE INFO

History and Horror

Friday, May 1, 5:30-9 p.m., 5th and Arch Streets. Bring up some haunting memories with a tour that takes you through the Civil War history at Christ Church Burial Ground and The Betsy Ross House. Then reel yourself even further into horror with a screening of Bride of the Monster under the stars at the Besty Ross House, all for the non-scary price of $15. MORE INFO

Outland Empire

Friday, May 1, 6-9 p.m., LMNL Gallery, 1526 Frankford Avenue. Don’t go digging through London train stations to find your piece of magic, because you may just find it’s much closer to home. Photographer Tod Seelie documents underground activities in Southern California, where eccentricity still reigns supreme. MORE INFO

Faking the Moon Landing

Friday, May 1, 6-9 p.m., The First Banana, 2152 E. Dauphin Street. It’s your wildest childhood dream come true: finally an exhibition featuring Polaroids and 3D Viewmaster photos. Rich Wexler’s series includes both taken and found images of every aspect of life, from eroticism to model cars. MORE INFO

The Banquet of Limitless Opportunity

Friday, May 1, Little Berlin, 2430 Coral Street. One part performance art, one part psychological study, it’s a Dali dinner party for the modern day. The collaborative project comes with a full meal, so be sure to come hungry. MORE INFO

For much more on this blockbuster weekend in Philadelphia, check out



Leave a comment directly on the blog

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *