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The Barnes Foundation Announces the Canopy at the Barnes, an Interactive Outdoor Installation for The Oval+

Site-specific canopy, inflatable furniture, and games; lunchtime live music on Thursdays from July 19 to August 16, 11:30 am–1:30 pm

Philadelphia, PA, July 18, 2018—For this summer’s The Oval+—an initiative of Philadelphia Parks & Recreation in partnership with Fairmount Park Conservancy—the Barnes Foundation presents an interactive outdoor installation, the Canopy at the Barnes, designed by SHIFTSPACE.

Extending beyond Eakins Oval and down the outer lanes of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway (north side between 20th street and Art Museum Drive) for the first time, The Oval+ will transform a portion of the Parkway into a grand promenade for pedestrians, offering Philadelphians and city visitors the opportunity to experience it from a new perspective.

Activating the Barnes’s grounds, the Canopy at the Barnes will feature a site-specific mesh canopy hung from the trees lining the Parkway, offering abundant shade. The canopy will float above café-style seating and lounge areas featuring inflatable furniture, both open to all. To further activate the space and welcome visitors to the Parkway, there will be family-friendly games—including bocce ball—and, connecting with The Oval+’s “Arts & Culture Thursdays” theme, every Thursday from July 19 through August 16, 11:30 am–1:30 pm, the Barnes will host “bring your own lunch” afternoons with live music from the Philadelphia Jazz Project. The live music schedule is included below.

“We are thrilled to participate in The Oval+—the city’s much-anticipated summer pop-up along the Benjamin Franklin Parkway—with the Canopy at the Barnes. The Oval+ is a wonderful way to celebrate not only the summer season but also the Parkway centennial, and what better way to do so than to make the Parkway more accessible and interactive?” says Thom Collins, executive director and president of the Barnes. “Aligned with our efforts to activate the Barnes as a welcoming space for all and reenergize our grounds, the Canopy at the Barnes will offer a shady spot to relax, listen to music, and connect with friends and family this summer.”


Thursday, July 19: Saxophonist Larry Price and percussionist Karen Smith
Thursday, July 26: Drummer Doug Hirlinger and saxophonist Andrew Pereira
Thursday, August 2: Percussionist Kevin Diehl and flautist Brother Wali
Thursday, August 9: New Orleans–inspired selections from saxophonist Lynn Riley and ensemble
Thursday, August 16: The Three Bones, featuring trombonists Dan Blacksberg, Frank Rein, and Connor Przybyszewski

The Barnes Foundation is a non-profit cultural and educational institution that shares its unparalleled art collection with the public, organizes special exhibitions, and presents programming that fosters new ways of thinking about human creativity. The Barnes collection is displayed in ensembles that integrate art and objects from across cultures and time periods, overturning traditional hierarchies and revealing universal elements of human expression. Home to one of the world’s finest collections of impressionist, post-impressionist, and early modern paintings—including the largest groups of paintings by Pierre-Auguste Renoir and Paul Cézanne in existence—the Barnes brings together renowned masterworks by such artists as Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso, Amedeo Modigliani, and Vincent van Gogh, alongside ancient, medieval, Renaissance, and non-Western art as well as metalwork, furniture, and decorative art.

The Barnes Foundation was established by Dr. Albert C. Barnes in 1922 to “promote the advancement of education and the appreciation of the fine arts and horticulture.” Since moving to the heart of Philadelphia in 2012, the Barnes has expanded its commitment to teaching visual literacy in groundbreaking ways, investing in original scholarship relating to its collection and enhancing accessibility throughout every facet of its program.

The Barnes Foundation is open Wednesday–Monday, and tickets can be purchased on-site, online, or by calling 215.278.7200. Ticket prices and current hours are listed on our website.

SHIFTSPACE is a Philadelphia-based design studio focused on the interplay of architecture and industrial design. Led by Mario Gentile and Tim Barnes, the multidisciplinary team engages with brands, institutions, and cities to complete projects at varying scales. Their work ranges from large-scale urban interventions and creative placemaking to architecture and furniture. The studio has been blending architectural space, public art, and landscapes together with places and products since 2009.

The Oval+ is created by a partnership of Philadelphia Parks & Recreation and Fairmount Park Conservancy. Summer at The Oval+ is presented by PNC and supported by funding from ArtPlace America and Knight Foundation. The first version of Philadelphia’s summer-only “Park on the Parkway” was launched by Fairmount Park Conservancy and Philadelphia Parks & Recreation in 2013. It transformed the eight acres of Eakins Oval (mostly used as a parking lot) into a public space with community programming, events, and activities. In 2017, The Oval expanded down the Parkway to include two nearby parks adjacent to Logan Circle. The 2018 version consists of the largest footprint to date.

Deirdre Maher, Director of Communications
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