Morris Arboretum

Morris Arboretum

Connecting people, plants, and place.

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Art at Morris Arboretum

Art at Morris Arboretum

Upcoming Exhibitions

Artists in the Garden: PAFA at Morris Arboretum

On display March 1 - July 26; Visitor Center Upper Gallery.

Opening Reception: Sunday, March 1 | 1:00 - 3:00pm

Free with garden admission. Free for Morris Arboretum Members and PAFA students, faculty, and staff who present a PAFA I.D.

This exhibition features artwork by students, alumni and faculty of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (PAFA), held in conjunction with the PAFA exhibition, Artists in the Garden: American Impressionism and the Garden Movement, 1887 – 1920, February 13 – May 24, 2015. For more information, visit

Artists in the Garden

Pictured: Bill Hansen; Garden 9
Inkjet Pigment Print, 2012

Patrick Dougherty Stickworks

On display beginning April 4; Sculpture Garden.

Opening Reception: Saturday, April 4 | 10:00am

Free with garden admission..

Come be among the first to view the newest sculpture created by internationally renowned artist Patrick Dougherty. Designed and built on-site this artwork is composed entirely of locally gathered natural materials. Learn more about this exhibit.

Patrick Dougherty

Upper Gallery Exhibitions

Located in the Widener Visitor Center, the Upper Gallery is an exhibition space showcasing fine photography and other two-dimensional artwork.

Exhibitions change periodically. Artists interested in exhibiting their work should contact Bob Gutowski, Director of Public Programs, at


The structures in the gardens at Morris Arboretum span the centuries. The Morrises not only designed many features themselves, but also employed the finest local architects of their time. The knowledge that their garden is now on the National Register of Historic Places would have pleased John and Lydia, who were active in historic preservation. The Arboretum has also won recent recognition as one of the nation's best-designed public landscapes.

John and Lydia Morris, who founded the Morris Arboretum, introduced fine arts into their Victorian estate landscape. Sculpture, landscape design and architecture were brought together in harmony with educational and scientific pursuits.

This concept was rekindled in the 1970s in an ongoing effort to create a visual and cultural counterpoint to the Arboretum's scientific mission.

In 1983, the Advisory Board of Managers unanimously adopted a resolution recommending "the acquisition, display and interpretation of a fine arts collection be developed as an integral part of the Arboretum's landscape design and living collection."

The primary goal at Morris Arboretum is to develop very fine gardens and to make sure that art is a part of those gardens. Garden design is a fine art and sculpture is a part of that fine art. The landscape and the art should complement one another. The biggest challenge is to incorporate contemporary art into what is essentially a Victorian landscaped garden in a way that doesn't clash with the surroundings.

Interpretations for selected works were written by Judith E. Stein, Ph.D, a Philadelphia-based curator and critic.

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Weather Update:

The Arboretum is open as usual today 10:00am - 4:00pm. Please use extra caution on pathways as some ice may persist.

Please note that winter weather conditions can change quickly, check back or call (215) 247-5777 before heading out for a visit.

Weather conditions may limit garden access to certain features even if the garden is open – please check the web site or call (215) 247-5777 for updates before visiting. Our visitors’ safety in the garden is our top priority. Therefore when inclement weather is predicted, we will make decisions about closing the garden accordingly.