Harrisburg’s rich culture and history make it an ideal destination for art lovers. The city is home to world-class art venues and boutique galleries which handsomely illustrate our region’s beauty through the talents of local artisans and its willingness to show visitors that art is for everyone!
Susquehanna Art Museum
Susquehanna Art Museum (SAM) located in the heart of Midtown Harrisburg is the city’s only dedicated art museum. When you think of museums you might think relics, but here you’ll find exquisitely displayed current works of local, national, and international artists, chosen to represent a variety of styles, themes, and creativity. SAM took over what used to be a bank and its original vault makes for a unique gallery space. SAM also educates the community and visitors about culture and art, and families with kids ages four and up can stop by on the weekends for an art class. If you've been here before, we encourage you to visit again and again. Because SAM doesn’t have a permanent collection of works, their walls can display something new to admire each time you drop in!
Art Association of Harrisburg
Founded in 1926, the Art Association of Harrisburg is the oldest and largest art gallery in the city. Open seven days a week, visitors can enjoy its exhibits spanning spacious five rooms, all within the ambiance of the historic Governor Findlay Mansion overlooking the Susquehanna River. This downtown cultural hub rotates its themed art exhibits every five weeks and features the works of its 500 local and regional artist-members. The Art Association of Harrisburg considers itself a ‘culture concierge’, frequently hosting art and music events and an annual Gallery Walk around the city to introduce the community to the arts. While you’re strolling Downtown Harrisburg, this is a must-see!
You might know The Millworks for their local, sustainable restaurant and craft brewery that’s become a premier Midtown Harrisburg destination. What makes this place a culture corner is its formidable art space that includes both boutique galleries and artist studios. You’ll find painters and potters, sculptors and weavers, and photographers and soapmakers. Falling in love with a piece you can purchase makes for a meaningful souvenir from our region! Grab a glass of Millworks' barleywine and browse what Harrisburg Magazine dubbed ‘Simply the Best’ Art Gallery in their 2017 Readers’ Poll.
State Museum of Pennsylvania
As the Commonwealth’s official museum, the State Museum of Pennsylvania has remarkable artifacts, fascinating exhibits, and of course, art! Affectionately known as the Smithsonian of Pennsylvania, it's impressive collection includes contemporary artwork to centuries-old paintings that double as both art and history. In its rotating contemporary collection, the museum highlights the incredible work of Pennsylvania artists through its annual Art of the State (through February 18, 2018) and the rising artistic talents of junior high students across the state, which we're told gets more impressive with each passing year. You'll find incredible artwork that helps illustrate Pennsylvania's history and heritage spread throughout the museum. The Pennsylvania Icons exhibit includes world-renowned Keystone state artists like Charles Willson Peale, Horace Pippin, Andy Warhol, Aaron Gorson, and N.C. Wyeth. In addition to the art, you can easily spend a few hours wandering three floors of exhibits that give visitors a fascinating and thorough overview of what is distinctly Pennsylvania.
Harrisburg Midtown Arts Center is known as H*MAC for short, but MAC also stands for music, art, and culture. You might find yourself at this Midtown community venue for a concert, open mic night, or a meal from their craft kitchen, but you'll no doubt find yourself surrounded by art. From any seat in the house, you can look up and all around to find paintings, photographs, and other handiwork by local artisans, many just affixed to the wall or hung from the ceiling without frames. The whole building is its gallery with a collection curated to visually tell the story of Harrisburg's culture. Its art, music, industrial chic decor, and bohemian vibes that give its visitors a truly unique experience.
Art aficionados and casual gallery gawkers alike can get their fill of art and culture in Harrisburg!