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5 Local Museums with Online Exhibits

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The Barnes Foundadtion. // Photo Courtesy of Tom Crane and Benjamin Riley.

Whether you’re starved for culture or just need a virtual change up, several area museums offer exhibits that can be explored online while the physical spaces are closed during the coronavirus pandemic.  

Barnes Foundation 

Founded by Dr. Albert C. Barnes in 1922, the Barnes Foundation features a wide range of works, from modern to impressionistic paintings, sculptures, furniture and more. Online visitors can discover the extensive collection, which can be filtered by colors, lines, light and space, or by keyword. Among the extraordinary works are pieces by renowned artists Paul Cézanne, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Henri Mattise and Vincent Van Gogh. Learn about the history of the work, where it is in the museum and more.  

2025 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia, (215) 278-7000.  

Main Line Art Center 

A number of the Haverford art center’s previous exhibits can found online for visitors to explore for free. Among the offerings are the Young Artists Awards from 2018, which features an array of vibrant works from area youth, including what school they attended and how old they were at the time. Mytopia: Panorama 2015 is an especially fun gallery thanks to creations from the visually impaired, plus landscapes from near (see if you can spot Chanticleer) and far.  

746 Panmure Road, Haverford, (610) 525-0272   

National Museum of American Jewish History  

With an impressive range of over 30,000 artifacts, the National Museum of American Jewish History has lots to explore. Spanning over 350 years of American Jewish history, online visitors can experience the exhibits Chasing Dreams and one dedicated to iconic composer, author and pianist Leonard Bernstein. Both have components that make it feel like you’re in the museum, adding to the experience.  

101 S. Independence Mall East, Philadelphia, (215) 923-3811  

The Rosenbach 

Founded in 1954, the Rosenbach features comprehensive exhibits inspired by rare books, manuscripts and the decorative arts. Online, visitors can virtually explore select items from some of the museum’s collections, which range from American literature to furniture, lighting and textiles to miniature portraits.  

2008-2010 Delancy Place, Philadelphia, (215) 732-1600. 

Woodmere Art Museum 

Focused on Philadelphia area artists, Woodmere offers select exhibition catalogues for free viewing online, giving visitors a look at both the artwork and its history. Prefer to hear about art? Catch the museum’s podcast, “Diving Board,” online, too.  

9201 Germantown Ave., Philadelphia, (215) 247-0476.