At the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia

Virtually explore the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts with Smarthistory as your guide

Some background

videos + essays

Link to the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts's website

Benjamin West, <em>Penn’s Treaty with the Indians</em>
Benjamin West, Penn’s Treaty with the Indians

A founding myth for Pennsylvania and for the United States

Thomas Birch, <em>Fairmount Water Works</em>
Thomas Birch, Fairmount Water Works

Fresh water for a young Philadelphia

Thomas Birch, <em>Perry’s Victory on Lake Erie</em>
Thomas Birch, Perry’s Victory on Lake Erie

"We have met the enemy and they are ours." The battle that turned the War of 1812

Charles Willson Peale, <em>The Artist in His Museum</em>
Charles Willson Peale, The Artist in His Museum

What couldn’t Peale do? He is shown as he saw himself: portraitist, naturalist, curator, and Enlightenment thinker.

John Vanderlyn, <em>Ariadne Asleep on the Island of Naxos</em>
John Vanderlyn, Ariadne Asleep on the Island of Naxos

Unusually early for an American artist, Vanderlyn trained in France—but Old World style didn’t sell in America.