Philadelphia Museum of Art Archives
Philadelphia Museum of Art Archives

Special Exhibitions Department Records Edit




  • 1986-2006, undated (Creation)


  • 62.5 linear feet (Whole)

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  • Abstract

    None available.

  • Processing Information

    These materials were arranged and described by Bertha Adams, Susan Anderson and Megan Finn in 2011. Funded by a grant from Institute of Museum and Library Services and National Historical Publications and Records Commission.

  • Access Restrictions

    The collection is open for research. Access to institutional records less than 10 years old is at the discretion of the Archivist.

  • Use Restrictions

    The Special Exhibition Department Records are the physical property of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Archives. The Museum holds literary rights only for material created by Museum personnel or given to the Museum with such rights specifically assigned. For all other material, literary rights, including copyright, belong to the authors or their legal heirs and assigns. Researchers are responsible for obtaining permission from rights holders for publication and for other purposes where stated.

  • Preferred Citation

    [Item identification and date], [Series info.], Special Exhibitions Department Records, Philadelphia Museum of Art, Library and Archives.

  • Historical Note

    In 1990 the Museum established a Special Exhibitions Department charged with coordinating the multiple offices involved in organizing shows, from curatorial to publishing. Along with an administrative assistant, Suzanne F. Wells managed the new department as its Coordinator. From 2002 to 2005, Bethany Morris served as Assistant Coordinator. In 2006, Wells was named Director, and Zoe Kahr, Assistant Director. Special Exhibitions continues to operate as a team of two.

  • Scope and Content Note

    As testament to the diversity and breadth of the Museum's special exhibitions are those documented in this record group. Some of the more extensively documented include: "Henry Ossawa Tanner" (January 20-Arp. 14, 1991); "Constantin Brancusi 1887-1957" (October-December 1995); "Best Dressed: 250 Years of Style" (October 21, 1997-January 4, 1998); "Degas and the Dance" (February12-May 11, 2003); and "African Art, African Voices: Long Steps Never Broke a Back" (October 2, 2004-January 2, 2005). Indicative of the department's operations are file topics created for almost every exhibiton; namely, contracts, funding, opening events and public relations.

    Folder-level inventories are available in the Archives.

  • Arrangement

    Materials are arrranged chronologically according to each exhibition's opening date, beginning with the creation of the Special Exhibitions Department in 1981. At the series level, materials are divided by decade.