Jo Davidson, "Walt Whitman," 1957, bronze on granite base statue. Photo by Alec Rogers for the Association for Public Art, 2016.
As part of a region-wide program of cultural events designed to reassess Walt Whitman and his impact on art and society, University of Pennsylvania Libraries presents Whitman at 200 on the occasion of the pivotal literary figure’s 200th birthday. The project situates Whitman in Philadelphia and its neighborhoods and connects him to the life and art of the city, then and now. Four new artistic commissions from Carolyn Healy and John Phillips, The Bearded Ladies Cabaret, Homer Jackson and Spencer Fitch, and Patti Smith will examine themes within Whitman’s work and life. A multitude of exhibitions and programs are presented with partner organizations such as the Free Library of Philadelphia, City of Philadelphia, Philadelphia Museum of Art, Arcadia University, William Way LGBT Community Center, and more.
While events will take place all year, there will be a focus on the two-week period, between May 24 and June 9, 2019, around Whitman's birthday. Visit the Whitman at 200 website for a schedule of programming.