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The Penn Museum Celebrates Art Museum Day on Tuesday, May 19

The Penn Museum Joins in the Association of Art Museum Directors'
Sixth Annual Celebration of Art Museum Day on May 19, 2015
With Free Admission and Special Programming

AtticRed-figureStamnos PM-sm2Philadelphia, PA, MAY 2015—On Tuesday, May 19, the Penn Museum offers a day of free admission and special programming for adults and families, as part of the Association of Art Museum Directors' (AAMD) Art Museum Day, coinciding with International Museum Day on Monday, May 18, 2015. Last year, the Penn Museum—along with 180 other AAMD member museums across North America—participated in Art Museum Day.

Art Museum Day underscores the critical role art museums play as cultural resources in their communities and celebrates the unique opportunities AAMD member museums offer visitors to engage with works of art. This year, the Penn Museum offers special activities throughout the day: a drop-in children's craft workshop inspired by Beneath the Surface: Life, Death and Gold from Ancient Panama, the special exhibition open through November 1 (10:00 to 11:30 am); opportunities to chat with a Museum mummies conservator during "Open Window" times at In the Artifact Lab: Conserving Egyptian Mummies (11:15 and 2:00 pm); and a chance to chat with docents and handle reproduction artifacts at special Cartifacts (noon to 4:00 pm). At 12:30 pm, Dr. C. Brian Rose, Peter C. Ferry Curator-in-Charge, Mediterranean Section, offers a curator's tour of Worlds Intertwined: Etruscans, Greeks, and Romans.

NsikpeDanceCrest-smVisitors are invited to take on the role of artists during the afternoon's Open Sketch Time (2:00 to 5:00 pm). The Museum provides basic pencils and paper (limited number of clip boards available), or guests may bring their own sketch boards, pads and pencils, and select an inspiring artifact or gallery to draw in.

The Penn Museum also invites visitors to share their experiences on Art Museum Day via social media with the hashtag #ArtMuseumDay.

"With world renowned collections from around the globe, many acquired from our own archaeological excavations, the Penn Museum is in a unique position to explore the story of humanity," noted Julian Siggers, Ph.D., Williams Director, Penn Museum, and a member of the Association of Art Museum Directors. "We are delighted to join with art museums around the country—and international museums around the world—for a day of special access to celebrate our shared cultural and artistic heritage."

"Art museums are invaluable communal spaces that bring people together to experience the arts across cultures and generations," said Chris Anagnos, executive director of AAMD. "AAMD is so pleased that Penn Museum is joining us in this celebration by welcoming everyone in the Philadelphia region to participate in Art Museum Day."

EmbossedGoldPlaque-smAAMD represents 242 art museums across the United States, Canada, and Mexico—from regional museums to large museums in major urban centers. International Museum Day is organized annually around the world by the International Council of Museums (ICOM). AAMD's Art Museum Day is an opportunity to focus attention on the role of art museums in North America.

A comprehensive list of participating AAMD member art museums will be available on the AAMD website.

TWEET IT: The @pennmuseum offers FREE general admission for all visitors on Tuesday, May 19 in celebration of #ArtMuseumDay!

Founded in 1887, the Penn Museum (the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology), 3260 South Street in Philadelphia, is one of the world's great archaeology and anthropology research museums, and the largest university museum in the United States. With nearly one million objects in the collection, the Penn Museum encapsulates and illustrates the human story: who we are and where we came from. A dynamic research institution with many ongoing research projects, the Museum is an engaging place of discovery. The Museum's mandate of research, teaching, collections stewardship, and public engagement are the four "pillars" of the Museum's expansive mission: to transform understanding of the human experience.

The Penn Museum is located at 3260 South Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104 (on Penn's campus, across from Franklin Field). Public transportation to the Museum is available via SEPTA's Regional Rail Line at University City Station; the Market-Frankford Subway Line at 34th Street Station; trolley routes 11, 13, 34, and 36; and bus routes 21, 30, 40, and 42. Museum hours are Tuesday through Sunday, 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, and first Wednesdays of each month until 8:00 pm, with P.M. @ PENN MUSEUM evening programs offered. Closed Mondays and holidays. Admission donation is $15 for adults; $13 for senior citizens (65 and above); free for U.S. Military; $10 for children and full-time students with ID; free to Members, PennCard holders, and children 5 and younger.

Hot and cold meals and light refreshments are available for purchase with or without Museum admission in The Pepper Mill Café; the Museum Shop and Pyramid Shop for Children offer a wide selection of gifts, books, games, clothing and jewelry. Penn Museum can be found on the web at For general information call 215.898.4000. For group tour information call 215.746.8183.

Image captions, top to bottom: Heracles is shown fighting the ferocious Nemean Lion on this ancient Greek pot, which dates to ca. 490 BCE. This exceptional piece of ancient Greek pottery is one of more than 1,400 artifacts that are part of a suite of galleries, Worlds Intertwined: Etruscans, Greeks, and Romans, at the Penn Museum; A 20th-century Nsikpe Dance Crest from Nigeria, made from wood, antelope skin, basketry, and iron nails. Masks like this one originally were used as symbols to unify the diverse groups of the area. It is on display in the Penn Museum's Africa Gallery, which features materials from throughout that vast continent; A visitor admires gold artifacts from Sitio Conte, Panama, dating to ca. 700-900 CE, in the Penn Museum's Beneath the Surface: Life, Death, and Gold in Ancient Panama exhibition. All photos courtesy of the Penn Museum.


Jill DiSanto, Public Relations Director