Center City Museums and Galleries
The Barnes Foundation Museum
2025 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy., Center City
The Barnes Collection was originally established in 1922 by Albert Barnes, a Philadelphia businessman who amassed a stunning collection of impressionist, post-impressionist, and early modern paintings—including significant works by Renoir, Cézanne, Matisse, Picasso, and Rousseau. In 2012, Barnes’ namesake foundation opened a stunning new campus building that devotes 93,000 square feet to storage, conservation, education, and exhibition space, which makes his stunning collection more accessible than ever. There’s no excuse for missing the downtown building if you’re staying in city center, but if time allows, make the trek to their suburban campus in Merion, which boasts a gorgeous arboretum.
The National Constitution Center
525 Arch St., Center City
With a slew of interactive exhibits that make it a kid-worthy destination, this essential museum delivers on its promise of educating, and offering an engaging dialogue about the Constitution. Past exhibits, like Powers of the President, have looked at the nature of executive power under the Constitution as it has been defined through the legacies of George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, FDR, and Richard Nixon, alongside lesser-known (but equally important) constitutional legacies. Through December 2017, you can see one of the twelve surviving copies of the Bill of Rights in the feature exhibit, Constituting Liberty.
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