Scenic USA - Pennsylvania

Philadelphia Museum of Art

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Philadelphia Museum of Art - Pennsylvania

Photo by Marty Straub
Marty Straub Photography

   Introducing the movie-going world to sights around Philadelphia, Rocky Balboa's jog up the front entrance steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art in 1976 still has fans repeating this Oscar-winning film scene. Today, museum officials dread the fact that more people are drawn to one of the largest museums in the world because of the Rocky Steps rather than the works of Van Gogh, Picasso, Renoir and Monet. Still in all, the Museum of Art, following the lines of a Greek temple, manages to attract thousands upon thousands of visitors from around the globe. Housing one of the finest collections of art in the world, it would take at least two hours just to walk through the 200 galleries. Featuring over 300,000 pieces, these galleries touch on art from a Pre-Columbian Era to the Middle Ages, and the Renaissance Period to Modernism. The museumís most recognizable period sculptures, those of Greek and Roman gods and goddesses, adorn the North Wing Pediment.
   Nicknamed the Parthenon of the Parkway, the building was designed by Julian Francis Abele in the early 1900s. Construction began in 1919, but lack of funds delayed completion until 1928. The origins of the museumís works go back to the Fairmount Park Centennial Exposition in 1876. Outgrowing the permanent exhibition hall, the present day main museum features over 800,000 square feet of artwork, and is located at the end of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway.

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