Pennsylvania Academy Of The Fine Arts Debuts Major Chuck Close Photography Exhibition

Find the renowned artist's images — 90 in total — on display at PAFA...

Photography lovers, rejoice! The first major exhibition in Philadelphia of renowned artist Chuck Close heads to the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts starting October 6, 2017 and running through April 8, 2018.

Chuck Close Photographs features 90 different images that span from 1964 to the present. The display looks at how Close, foremost known as a contemporary painter, used photography as a means of exploration throughout his career.



  • Chuck Close Photographs runs from October 6, 2017 to April 8, 2018.
  • The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts hosts the exhibition, featuring 90 images and a variety of photographic media.
  • The display showcases the artist’s exploration of photography from 1964 to present.
  • The exhibition is included with general admission.

Exhibition Overview

Chuck Close, an MFA graduate from Yale University, is best known as a contemporary painter. Throughout his more-than-50-year career, Close has experimented with photography, which has become a crucial component of the paintings he produces.

Today, Close is often referred to as a photorealist, working off of photographs to create monumental-sized portraits.

In Chuck Close Photographs at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, 90 images are on display that show the artist’s exploration of photography from 1964 to present.

From early black-and-white maquettes to composite Polaroids to intimately scaled daguerreotypes and Woodburytypes to the most recent Polaroid nudes, the exhibition shows Close’s wide range of photographic experimentation.

Close’s photographic subjects range from Alec Baldwin to Philip Glass to Hillary Clinton, all of whom are featured in the exhibition.

Chuck Close Photographs
(Photo courtesy the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts)
Chuck Close Photographs features 90 images from the renowned artist’s career, spanning from 1964 to present.

Close uses a grid method to create paintings from the photographs he produces. However, not all of his images are destined to become paintings. Photography, which started as a tool to merely create source material for Close, quickly turned into an artistic pursuit that would not only become crucial to his career but expand his work as an artist.

While primarily composed of portraiture and what Close calls “big heads,” Chuck Close Photographs also displays the artist’s photographic endeavors with full-body nudes as well close-ups of flowers. The exhibition ends with a display of self-portraiture, in which the viewer can take an even closer look at Close himself.

Chuck Close Photographs
(Bill T. Jones/Diptych | Image courtesy Chuck Close and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts)
Subjects depicted in Chuck Close Photographs include Bill T. Jones (pictured here), Hillary Clinton, Brad Pitt, Alec Baldwin and more. 

Tickets and More

Tickets to Chuck Close Photographs are included with general admission to the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. Admission is $15 per adult, $12 for seniors (60 years old and up), $12 for students with ID and $8 for youth (13-18 years old). Children 12 years old and under are free, as are military personnel and museum members.

The exhibition is housed in the Fisher Brooks and Maguire galleries of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts’s Samuel M.V. Hamilton Building.

Get ready for some visual stimulation – whether you’re a hobbyist, professional photographer or simply a smartphone-snapping fiend, you’re bound to be inspired!

Chuck Close Photographs

When:October 6, 2017 - April 8, 2018
Where:Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts' Samuel M.V. Hamilton Building, 128 North Broad Street
Cost:Free with general admission (GA: $15 per adult, $12 for seniors 60 years old and up, $12 for students with ID, $8 for youth 13-18 years old and free for children 12 years old and under)



Leave a comment directly on the blog

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