Philadelphia Art Alliance


The Woodbury Fall Arts Fest is proud to welcome our esteemed partner, The Philadelphia Art Alliance.  If you know anything about the arts community in Philadelphia then you know that this organization is a cornerstone and arguably one of the most influential forces in the Philadelphia art culture now and since its glorious inception.  Founded in 1915 by philanthropist Christine Wetherill Stevenson, The Philadelphia Art Alliance is one of the oldest multidisciplinary arts centers in the United States for visual, literary and performing arts.  Most would reference it as the first real art gallery in Philly and that is arguably true.    The founding of this organization gave a home to the arts community.  Andrew Wyeth held his first-ever solo exhibition at the Alliance in 1936; Paul Klee was featured in 1944; Merce Cunningham and John Cage performed together at the Alliance 1950; Robert Venturi exhibited in 1969.  And this is just the start of a long list.  In fact, with almost 100 years behind it, the Philadelphia Art Alliance is an institution with a history that dwarfs museums several times its size.

This success was certainly born out of vision but the property has certainly added to the esteemed reputation.  Since 1926, the Alliance has been located in the Italian Renaissance-style palazzo on Rittenhouse Square that once belonged to the Wetherill family.  A jewel of Philadelphia residential architecture, the building was designed in 1906 by Charles Klauder of Frank Miles Day and Brother Architects.  Today, the Wetherill mansion is one of the few grand houses remaining on the Square and an ideal location for an encounter with the arts. Three to four exhibitions and more than sixty performances are presented each year in seven Alliance galleries, totaling 4,063 square feet. A bar and restaurant are also available on-site. Consistent with its rich history, the Alliance is listed on the National Register of Historic Places as part of the Rittenhouse Square Historic District.

The most recent initiative of the PAA is to recapture the pride once found in the word "craft" which has more recently acquired a rather undeserved identity as the lesser of the arts.  Craft used to signify the art of the craftsman, those that took the highest level of skill and applied it to something by hand.  Craft is a verb, the making of something with love and dedication.  "We are focusing on contemporary craft and design in our new series The Craft Of which highlights the art that goes into the making of something," explains Interim Membership Manager Jared Miller.  The most recent installment of this series focused on the craft of ice cream making with local Old City favorite shop, The Franklin Fountain.  
On September 29th, The Philadelphia Art Alliance brings the love of craft to the Woodbury Fall Arts Fest with a lecture, demonstration, interview and discussion panel live at the Art of Spice Chili Cook-Off stage.  What makes a great chili?  Is there an art to the selection and combination of spices?  Foodies be warned - this is an event not to be missed!


Pre-buy yourTasting Kit today for ONLY $6
 Tasting Kit includes:

  • Bowls, Spoons, Napkins
  • Voting Ballot
  • Tasty Portion of Cornbread


$1 of every tasting kit sold to a local art program.