The Museum of Art in Philadelphia is one of the largest in the U.S. It’s been a few years since my last stop inside so I made an effort to visit last week while in the area. The exhibits are divided among two large floors, with the contemporary and special exhibits on the first floor, and Asian, European, and miscellaneous collections on the second. Separating the floors is a grand staircase with a large statue of Diana on the balcony.
Photographing in large museums is usually pretty easy as the lighting is well designed and the galleries provide a lot of space to move around. I shoot in raw, so any fluctuations in light temperatures are easily corrected back at the computer. I do usually have to increase the ISO settings to 800-1600 to get an adequate shutter speed to avoid blur.
As for the artwork, everyone has their own tastes, but I tend to gravitate towards sculptures and more traditional and religious art. I read that the museum owns close to a quarter million objects, so finding something of interest shouldn’t be too difficult. There also is a large collection of Philadelphia native Thomas Eakins’ (1844-1916) work that should appeal to most people. Interestingly, he was also an avid photographer.
While you’re downtown, you can also walk over to the nearby Rodin Museum, which features the largest collection of Auguste Rodin outside of France. Opened in 1929, the art originally was collected by a local businessman and includes “The Thinker”, a cast of “The Gates of Hell” doorway, and “The Kiss”.