Outdoor Expression: Art in the Open Philadelphia

Although I come from a family of talented artists, my own artistic skills are, to put it delicately, lacking. Sure, I can do a fantastic hand turkey, but that’s where the talent ends.

This is just one reason why I enjoy traveling to artistic outlets throughout Philly to enjoy the work of others. From the Philadelphia Art Museum to those tiny hidden photo and modern art galleries, this city has a lot of eye candy for the interested viewer to feast upon. Art in the Open Philadelphia (June 9-12) offers this leisurely viewing experience, plus something more. Instead of trapping you inside the four walls of a crowded gallery, this art experience is all outdoors. On the breezy banks of the Schuylkill River to be exact.

For four days selected artists will set up shop on the riverbanks and dazzle visitors with artistic creations, with the urban environment as muse. Inspired by the tradition of painting en plein air—or creating art outside—Art in the Open features much more than easels and paint brushes. A diverse array of artists will work with cameras, sewing machines, pens, hammers and, yes, brushes dipped in paint.  

The event is free, so stop by while on your daily bike ride or stroll.

Art in the Open Festival: 36 Artists Working along the banks of the Schuylkill River

Wednesday, June 9 – Saturday, June 12

Art in the Open is a citywide event that celebrates artists, their inspirations for creating art and their relationships with the urban environment. Inspired by, but re-framing, the tradition of painting en plein air, 36 artists working in a variety of media will create art outside, along the banks of the tidal Schuylkill River—from the historic Fairmont Park Water Works and the Philadelphia Museum of Art, south to landmark Bartram's Garden.