Photo from the Road: Philadelphia Public Art

Photo from the Road: Reading Terminal Market, Philadelphia
August 7, 2011
Driving to New York State
August 24, 2011

Photo from the Road: Philadelphia Public Art

Philadelphia is best known for its groundbreaking Mural Arts Program, which has produced some 3,000 murals city-wide and led to the city being called Mural City USA. I will talk more about the Mural Arts Program in an upcoming post, and share photos of the murals as well. But for now I just want to give you a flavor of some of the other public art that Philadelphia is filled with: sculptures and statues.

Although most statues in town are of either William Penn or Ben Franklin (and consequently most who answers to Philadelphia trivia are either of these two men) I tried to include the lesser-known statues and stories of Philadelphia public art beside those most popular and typical.
thorfinn karlsefni

The Viking Thorfinn Karlsefni’s expeditions were recorded in The Saga of Eric the Red, an epic tale describing their arrival to North America in the 11th century.

chinatown gate philadelphia

The gate in Chinatown Philadelphia.

Armenian genocide memorial philadelphia

A memorial beside the Philadelphia Museum of Art commemorating the Armenian genocide by the Ottoman Empire.

Philadelphia statue McClellan

Coming directly from Gettysburg, I was quick to notice this statue of McClellan, general of the Union forces during the battle of Gettysburg, in front of Philadelphia City Hall.

Jesus statue philadelphia

This statue of Jesus breaking bread stands outside of the Basilica in Philadelphia.

Kopernik monument philadelphia

This monument commemorates Copernicus and stands controversially close to the Basilica. Take that Catholic Church!

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Stephen Bugno
Stephen Bugno
Stephen Bugno has been traveling the world and writing about it for the better part of 20 years. His articles and essays have appeared in The San Francisco Chronicle, The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Seattle Times, and Transitions Abroad magazine. He blogs at Bohemian Traveler and edits the independent travel magazine He most recently set up a tour company offering authentic, small group tours at Unquote Travel. Follow him on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

1 Comment

  1. Juno says:

    I think Philly has the most mural and the most statues! Not to mention, like a half of them are Ben or William Penn!! 🙂 But I was really excited to meet Ben Franklin and Copernicus monument. They are in my science history.

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