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Penn Museum’s Sphinx Gallery to close for extensive conservation; Visitors invited to say ‘See You Later!’

June 27, 2018

If you haven’t visited The Penn Museum‘s iconic lower level Egypt (Sphinx) Gallery for a while you may want to do it within the next 10 days. On July 9, the gallery will close for extensive artifact conservation which will take several years, according to a museum announcement.

This is the first time the red granite Sphinx surrounded by colossal architectural elements of a Pharaoh’s palace circa 1200 BCE is taking a break, after more than 100 years of educating and entertaining guests. The new Ancient Egypt & Nubia Galleries are expected to open in four to six years.  Continue Reading

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Public art installation by artist Rea Tajiri ‘activates’ history of Japanese immigration to Philadelphia

June 4, 2018

Some of you have probably noticed blue bikes popping up in the last month at several locations in West Philly. They are actually a part of a multisite public art installation by Japanese American filmmaker and visual artist Rea Tajiri. Titled “WATARIDORI: birds of passage,” the project is part of the Asian Arts Initiative’s 25th anniversary celebration and “activates real and speculative histories” of Japanese immigrants in Philadelphia.

Check out this art installation at the front of the house at 4238 Spruce Street:

Art installation by Japanese American artist Rea Tajiri at 43rd & Spruce.

A post shared by West Philly Local (@westphillylocal) on

Other locations for Rea Tajiri’s public art installation include:  Continue Reading

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Jane’s Walk offers free walking tours this weekend

April 30, 2018

Jane’s Walk, the annual festival of free, citizen-led walking tours inspired by the American-Canadian journalist, author and activist Jane Jacobs, returns to Philadelphia on May 4-6 with 27 walks around the city! Three walks will be held in West Philly and University City – all on Friday, May 4th and all new. Here are more details:

3 – 5 p.m.: The Gardens of West Philadelphia walk and conversation with Jeff Barg of Pennsylvania Horticultural Society will begin and end at UCity Square PHS Pop-Up Garden (3601 Filbert St.). Join PHS on a walking tour of one of Philadelphia’s most garden-rich neighborhoods. This two-hour walking tour will explore the gardens of Powelton Village and West Powelton, some of which boast decades of history. Kids, dogs and bicycles are welcome. Event Facebook pageContinue Reading

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Philadelphia artists sought for art program as part of MOVE bombing site redevelopment project

April 9, 2018

The city’s Redevelopment Authority (PRA) and AJR Endeavors, the developer working on rebuilding the homes on the 6200 blocks of Osage Avenue and Pine Street, the site of the 1985 MOVE bombing and subsequent fire, are seeking Philadelphia-based artists for their “Percent for Art” project.

The art project will be based on community engagement and may ultimately take a more traditional artistic form, or less traditional form, such as performance-based, ceremonial, a print or digital publication, and other forms.

The Redevelopment Authority has recently issued a Request for Qualifications for Artists for the project.  Continue Reading

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When the Eagles called West Philly home

February 2, 2018

The last time the Eagles won a championship, the roar that followed the final whistle could be heard as far west as 40th Street, according to one newspaper reporter.

Some 67,000 fans poured out onto 33rd Street after the Eagles beat the Green Bay Packers in a 17-13 nail-biter to win the NFL Championship on Dec. 26, 1960. The game was played at Franklin Field at 33rd and South Streets, which the Eagles called home from 1958 to 1970.  Continue Reading

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Company building apartments atop former graveyard considers hiring consultants

January 29, 2018

What do you do when your job is to build an apartment building on what could be the city’s oldest African American cemetery? You start by asking a lot of questions, according to contractor Vaughan Buckley.

Wash N’ Lube car wash at 4125 Chestnut St was demolished earlier this month.

That’s what Buckley, head of Vaughan Buckley Construction, is doing after it was discovered last week that the site of a proposed apartment building at 4125 Chestnut Street, the property formerly occupied by the now-demolished Wash N’ Lube car wash, could have graves below.

“Consultants and other professionals in this field are being contacted and interviewed by my team and I, to help us throughout this process,” Buckley wrote in a formal statement on Friday. He said that the company is bringing in environmental and soil specialists to deal specifically with the cemetery situation.

The possibility that a graveyard was on the site became widely known after a Philadelphia Inquirer article was published last week.  Continue Reading

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