Plan Your Visit
The Palmer Museum of Art is open!
Admission is always free. Click here to reserve your tickets!
Important note: At this time, the Field Language exhibition is temporarily closed for maintenance, as are areas of the second floor galleries. For more information, please see descriptions in “Now on View” below.*
Closed Monday, Tuesday, and some holidays
Wednesday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Thursday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Friday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Sunday, Noon to 5 p.m.
The last timed-entry ticket will be at 4:30 p.m. daily.Click here to download a PDF on visiting the Palmer.
Instructions for Visiting
To ensure the well-being of all our visitors and staff, we ask that you please comply with the following Penn State and PA Department of Health guidelines to keep all of us safe.
Here’s what you need to know:
- Free timed-entry tickets: All visitors must reserve a free timed-entry ticket online via our website prior to arriving at the museum. We are limiting capacity in the building to 30 visitors an hour. To reduce gathering and lines, there will be two reservation slots available for up to fifteen visitors each hour for an hour-long stay in the galleries.
- Ticketing system: Timed tickets for visiting the Palmer will be made through Penn State’s ticketmaster system. You will need to create a login and account if you do not already have one. Below are step-by-step instructions on how to obtain your free Palmer tickets.
- Click the “Get Tickets” box in the opening banner.
- In the main “List of Events” box, click the “Continue” button to the right of the “Palmer Museum of Art timed entry” event.
- From the list of dates and times, select the date and time you plan to visit the Palmer. Add the number of visitors in your party under each appropriate category by using the + and – buttons (you do not need to adjust the “Best Available” dropdown). Click “Find Tickets” at the bottom of the page.
- On the next page, click the green “Add to Cart” button (don’t worry; tickets are free!)
- You will need to sign into Ticketmaster to “purchase” the tickets. Note: if you do not have a Ticketmaster account, click the small blue “Sign Up” hyperlink at the bottom of the sign-in page (next to “New to Ticketmaster?”). Follow the prompts to create an account.
- On the Shopping Cart screen, change the “Select Delivery” dropdown to your preferred electronic delivery method (text or e-mail). To finalize your order, click the blue “Checkout” button.
- You are all set! You will receive an email confirming your purchase. If you selected text as your delivery method, your tickets will be texted to your phone. If you selected email, your tickets will be emailed to you as a PDF attachment. You can either scan the PDF from your phone when you arrive, or print it and scan the printed copy.
- Masks: Visitors are required to wear face coverings or masks for entry. Even if you are vaccinated, you must wear a mask for admittance.
- Social distancing:Visitors must maintain a six-foot distance between others whenever possible. To ensure proper distancing we are limiting capacity to no more than 15 visitors per time ticketing interval.
- Check-in: Timed ticketing is contactless. Just tap your phone on the pedestal at the Visitor Services desk and go! Didn’t have a reservation, no worries! Just check in at the front desk with one of our friendly Visitor Services associates and provide us with your contact information and we will process your ticket. (Your information will not be shared, as it is for contact tracing purposes).
- Parking: Visitor parking for the Palmer Museum of Art is available for $1 per hour at the Nittany and East Parking Decks. ADA parking is available in lots adjacent to the Palmer with a valid Penn State day permit in addition to the valid state-issued ADA placard or license plate. One-day permits may be obtained from the University Parking Office in Eisenhower Parking Deck on Shortlidge Road, from campus kiosks, or from the Centre County Convention & Visitors Bureau on Park Avenue next to Beaver Stadium. For more information about parking or permits, call the parking office at 814-865-1436 or click here.
- Bags: Large items such as backpacks, large bags, camera equipment bags, backpack-style child carriers, and umbrellas are not allowed in the galleries. Lightweight collapsible strollers are permitted.
- Sanitization: Throughout the day, we will be sanitizing high-touch areas of the museum. We will also have hand sanitizer stations located throughout the museum; please use them.
- Navigation:Keeping in mind your safety, look out for our directional signage located throughout the building.
- Food and Drink: Food, beverages, and gum are not allowed in the galleries or auditorium. You can leave travel mugs/plastic water bottles in the cubbies in the coatroom.
- Photography: Non-flash photographs are permitted and encouraged, except when indicated otherwise on labels next to artwork or exhibition signage. Tripods and selfie sticks are not allowed in the galleries. Requests to videotape works of art/galleries or to photograph with tripods and camera equipment should be directed to Beverly Sutley, Registrar, at email@example.com and/or Sarah Anne Wharton, Communications Specialist, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Sketching: Sketching with pencils and colored pencils is allowed in the galleries. However, markers, ink pens, and other art supplies, including easels, are not permitted. An easy way to remember this is that “wet” or potentially messy art media including paints, ink, chalk, charcoal, oil pastels are prohibited. Large drawing boards or sketch pads (over 18 x 24 inches) are prohibited.
- Gallery Stools: Wooden stools are available for visitors’ use and stacked in various locations throughout the galleries. They are only available on a first-come, first-served basis.
- Wi-Fi: Complimentary wireless internet access is available in all indoor public spaces throughout the museum.
If you’re not yet ready to come in person, no problem! We will continue to bring the museum to you virtually through our social media channels: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube, so make sure you follow us on these channels to stay up to date.
Whether it’s in person or on Zoom, we look forward to seeing you soon. Until then, stay healthy and well!
Now On View
The Wit and Whimsy of Lucille CorcosFebruary 10 - May 9 Special Exhibition Gallery, first floor
A prolific illustrator, Lucille Corcos (1908–1973) depicted American life with an incomparable verve during the mid-twentieth century. Her work became highly sought after by numerous magazines beginning in the 1930s, and she regularly exhibited at galleries and museums into the 1950s. This exhibition, organized by the Palmer Museum and curated by Adam Thomas, Curator of American Art, examines these pivotal decades of Corcos’s career through her small-scale, semi-naïve tempera and watercolor paintings. Featuring recent acquisitions to the Palmer as well as loans from several museums and private collections, The Wit and Whimsy of Lucille Corcos is the first exhibition devoted to the artist in more than twenty-two years.
Field Language: The Painting and Poetry of Warren and Jane RohrerFebruary 10 - June 6 Special Exhibition Gallery 1, second floor
Organized by the Palmer Museum of Art, this major loan exhibition examines the art of Warren Rohrer (1927–1995) as it evolved in conversation with poet Jane Turner Rohrer (b. 1928), his partner of nearly fifty years. The dialogues Field Language traces flow between husband and wife, painting and poetry, and between tradition and modernism. Both Rohrers left the rural lifeways of a Mennonite upbringing to go “into the world.”
Over the course of his four-decade career, from the mid-1950s to the mid-1990s, Rohrer’s paintings became larger and more abstract, but his modernist progression remained consistently engaged with tradition. His abstractions evoke the fields of Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, where his family farmed for nine generations, while his mark-making recalls the meticulous, repetitive labor of farming and craftwork. Jane Rohrer’s poetry offers narrative context and emotional depth to the experience of her husband’s paintings, registering ambivalence about the relationship of modern artists to tradition and reflecting on the links between painting and poetry.
Featuring some fifty works, including paintings and works on paper, Amish quilts, and examples of Pennsylvania Dutch painted crockery and furniture, Field Language invites us to consider issues of land use, the sustainability of rural communities and cultures, and our own relationships with agricultural landscapes, seasonal change, labor, and human need and desire.
Curated by Joyce Robinson, Assistant Director of the Palmer Museum, in collaboration with guest curators poet Julia Spicher Kasdorf, Professor of English, and Christopher Reed, Distinguished Professor of English and Visual Culture, the exhibition is accompanied by a multi-author illustrated catalogue available now through Penn State Press or at the Museum Store.
Click here to check out the online companion to the exhibition. This virtual resource includes informative videos, short thematic essays, audio clips of poems, and suggestions for further reading.
Funding for the exhibition was provided through Penn State’s Office of the Executive Vice President and Provost as part of the University’s Strategic Arts and Humanities Initiative.
Snowiss Galleries of American ArtPermanent Collection
The Benjamin and Lillian K. Snowiss Galleries feature American painting and sculpture from the late eighteenth to the early twentieth century. Displayed in three galleries, this core collection of the Palmer Museum’s holdings surveys the major artistic developments in the United States, especially portraiture from the Early Republic, Hudson River School landscapes, genre painting before and after the Civil War, and various cosmopolitan styles of the Gilded Age.
Tonkin Gallery of Studio Glass and CeramicsPermanent Collection
The Harold L. and Edythe B. Tonkin Gallery showcases the Palmer Museum’s impressive holdings of contemporary studio glass and ceramics from around the world. On view are objects of dazzling variety and techniques by pioneering artists in the field of studio glass, as well as artists working in glass today from North America, England, Italy, Scandinavia, the Czech Republic, and Japan. The museum’s ceramics collection includes examples from ancient Andean cultures, from historical China and Korea, and from twentieth-century Europe and Japan.
Pincus Gallery of Contemporary ArtPermanent Collection
*The Pincus Gallery is temporarily closed due to maintenance.
The David and Gerry Pincus Gallery of Contemporary Art features rotating works of art from the late twentieth century to the present day. The range of media presented includes paintings, sculpture, photography, and works on paper by a diverse group of artists. The collection of contemporary art continues to grow significantly, reflecting the longstanding value the museum has placed on acquiring the work of living artists since its founding.
Harris Gallery of Baroque ArtPermanent Collection
*The Baroque gallery is temporarily closed due to maintenance.
The Morton B. and Mary Jane Harris Gallery features selections from the Palmer Museum’s collection of Old Master paintings. The majority of works on view are from the Baroque, a term that refers to an array of artistic approaches practiced throughout Europe in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Paintings from Italy predominate, but the gallery also includes work by French and Flemish artists. Typical of the period, the paintings are mostly religious in nature, depicting narratives from either the Old and New Testaments or the Golden Legend.
Virtual ResourcesNot ready to visit the museum in person? Visit the #PalmerfromHome through these virtual exhibitions and tours.
Pennsylvania Scenery: Early Landscape Prints from the Tavern Collection
Pennsylvania’s natural beauty figured prominently in early nineteenth-century literary journals and publications celebrating the American landscape.
This virtual exhibition features a selection of picturesque highlights from the “Tavern Collection” of Pennsylvania prints amassed by John C. O’Connor and Ralph M. Yeager and gifted to the museum nearly thirty-five years ago.
Organized by the Palmer Museum of Art.
Click to Take the Tour
African Brilliance and the Purpose of Art
This interactive virtual tour accompanied the Palmer’s spring 2020 special exhibition African Brilliance: A Diplomat’s Sixty Years of Collecting and will remain available throughout the current academic year. Explore the exhibition installation, images of selected works, videos for guided viewing, and related art-making activity suggestions. Use your mouse or touch screen to click the navigational buttons included throughout the presentation to move through the tour. (Note: using the Chrome browser may optimize your experience).
Click to Take the Tour
Who Am I? Art and Identity
This self-directed, interactive, online tour features a selection of objects from diverse areas of the museum’s collection, related through a common exploration of personal or cultural identity. Suggested lessons and discussion prompts will help support teachers in integrating the tour into class curriculum. Generous support for this project provided by Art Bridges.
Click to Take the Tour
Women in Art: Activism and Resistance
This self-directed, interactive, online tour is intended for college-level courses and features a selection of objects by female artists in the museum’s collection. In celebration of the centennial of the Nineteenth Amendment, this tour highlights artists working in a variety of mediums during the 20th and 21st centuries who have contributed to political, social, and cultural change. Generous support for this project provided by Art Bridges.
Click to Take the Tour
Upcoming ExhibitionsMark your calendars for these special exhibitions coming up later in the year.
Mark Makers: The Language of AbstractionMarch 28 - July 11 Special Exhibition Gallery 2, second floor
Creating art is in many ways about making marks: brushstrokes on canvas, ink or graphite dashes on paper, lines incised on a sheet of copper or drawn on a lithographic stone. The postwar decades in American art witnessed the primacy of mark making in the calligraphic gestures of Abstract Expressionism, the calculated grids of the Minimalists, and the dizzying striations of Op art. For many artists coming of age in the mid- to late twentieth century, the process or act of making marks was as integral a component of the final work of art as recognizable content or perceived meaning. “My subject is the STROKE,” commented artist Warren Rohrer, who confirmed his vocation as a painter at Penn State in the 1950s and whose abstract work from the following decades is featured in the spring exhibition Field Language.
Drawn largely from the Palmer Museum of Art’s permanent collection and the distinguished collection of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Mark Makers: The Language of Abstraction brings together paintings, drawings, and prints by a number of notable mark makers, including painter Alma Thomas, who, like Rohrer, drew inspiration from the surrounding landscape even as she moved beyond representational subject matter. Also on view are works by twentieth-century artists who continued to engage with the natural world as they explored abstract mark making, including Leonard Nelson, Mark Tobey, Henry Pearson, and Alan Gussow, and contemporary artists Mary Judge and Jo Margolis.
The presentation of Mark Makers: The Language of Abstraction is one in a series of American art exhibitions created through a multi-year, multi-institutional partnership formed by the Philadelphia Museum of Art as part of the Art Bridges + Terra Foundation Initiative.
March 3, 4:00 pmMuseum Conversation: Mark Makers
Joyce Robinson, Assistant Director, with special guests artists Jo Margolis and Mary Judge
In this Wednesday discussion led by Assistant Director and curator Joyce Robinson, join us for a lively conversation about the upcoming exhibition Mark Makers: The Language of Abstraction opening on March 28. Joining in will be contemporary artists Jo Margolis and Mary Judge, whose work is represented in the special exhibition.Registration link
March 15, 6:00 pmOnline Art Club Meetup: Recharge Your Creativity with the Palmer Museum
Take a brief, virtual tour of world-class art at the Palmer Museum, then dig into your art supplies and enjoy a simple art-making activity designed for all skill levels. Hosted by the Palmer’s education team of graduate assistants and undergraduate interns, this lively hangout will introduce a selection of artists from the permanent collection who use color to create a sense of movement and energy. The related activity will require paper/sketchbook, pencil, and color (crayons, markers, colored pencils, pastels – use what you have). This program is presented in partnership with the Penn State Alumni Association.Register via the Alumni Association
March 15, 12:00 amPenn State Creates: Virtual Maker Faire and Exhibition Submission
March 18, 6:00 pmLecture: “Tracking the Amish Quilt”: Warren and Jane Rohrer’s Search for a Usable Past
Janneken Smucker, Professor of History, West Chester University
Quilt historian Janneken Smucker teaches history at West Chester University in Philadelphia and is the author of Amish Quilts: Crafting an American Icon. In this illustrated lecture she will examine the history of Amish quilts, their embrace by collectors and the art world, and the critical role they played in the paintings and poetry of Warren and Jane Rohrer.
March 24, 4:00 pmMuseum Conversation: Warren Rohrer and Mark Making
Nancy Locke, Associate Professor of Art History and artist Christopher Campbell
Hosted by Christopher Reed, Distinguished Professor of English and Visual Culture
Art, historian Nancy Locke will discuss Warren Rohrer’s work in the context of modernist abstraction. Artist Christopher Campbell will join the conversation, providing insights about Rohrer’s quiet, painstaking approach to mark-making and its rootedness in the agricultural landscape.Registration link
April 1, 4:30 pmMuseum Conversation and Poetry Reading: Truths of a Woman’s Life
Julia Spicher Kasdorf and Shara McCallum, Poets and Liberal Arts Professors of English
Join Penn State English Professors Julia Spicher Kasdorf and Shara McCallum for an intimate look at the biography and craft of Jane Rohrer, the Field Language poet whose words often revealed complex relationships through everyday life.Registration link
April 8, 4:00 pmMuseum Conversation: The Wit and Whimsy of Lucille Corcos
Adam Thomas, Curator of American Art
Get a closer look at the distinctive and intricate work of painter, illustrator, and designer Lucille Corcos, whose work is currently on view at the Palmer in the first exhibition dedicated to her art in more than 22 years.Registration link
April 15, 6:00 pmArt After Hours: Make Your Mark: A Celebration of Makery
Celebrate and discover the variety of creative makers at Penn State. Featured makers in the Palmer’s “Virtual Showcase of Design, Craft, and Makery” will give brief presentations about their projects, and Palmer interns will host related discussions, games, and activities.
Submissions for the virtual maker faire are due by March 15. Click here to submit or find more information or contact Eunkyung Hwang at email@example.com with any questions.Link to join
Join and Give
There are many ways to get involved with the Palmer Museum of Art! You can become a member, donate, or volunteer. Membership and donations directly support: programming that enriches the lives of children and adults alike; acquisitions of works of art for the museum’s expanding collection; and keeping the museum a vital, free-admission resource for our community and region.
Friends membership is your passport to exploring the collection, exhibitions, and participating in a broad range of exclusive programs. Don’t let the Palmer go it alone! – Share your love of art with others and become a Friend. For information on the benefits of membership, see below or please contact Amber Krieg, associate director of membership and donor relations, at 814-863-9191 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
See the full range of Friends benefits
As a Friend of the Palmer Museum of Art, you will enjoy the special benefits listed here for one year:
⛋ A 10 percent discount on items purchased at the Museum Store (excluding consignment items)
⛋ Invitations to “members only” events celebrating art, such as private receptions and previews of special exhibitions
⛋ The most up-to-date information about activities surrounding new exhibitions, collections, and educational programs
⛋ Palmer Museum of Art newsletters and digital communications
⛋ An invitation to the Friends’ annual meeting with special presentations/guests
⛋ Reciprocal membership at more than 50 university museums around the country
See membership levels below.
Student – FREE
Young Alumni (35 and under) – $35
Individual – $50
Family/household – $75
Supporting – $150
Sustaining – $250
Exclusive Palmer Museum tote bag (available at the Museum store with your membership card)
Benefactor – $350
All Sustaining Benefits plus: an additional 10 percent discount (20 percent total) on Museum Store purchases and membership in the Print Study club
Curator – $500
All Sustaining benefits plus: a private tour with a curator and other special opportunities
Patron – $750
All Curator benefits plus: a Palmer Museum publication of your choice
Director’s Circle – $1,250
All Patron benefits plus: recognition on the donor board in the museum lobby and a private director’s tour and lunch for you and four invited guests
Collector’s Circle – $2,500 and more
All Director’s Circle benefits plus: membership in the President’s Club University-wide recognition society
A 10 percent membership discount is available to senior citizens 60 and older. For tax purposes, your contribution may be reduced by the value of benefits provided.
Donations of Works of Art
The Palmer Museum of Art accepts donations of art in accordance with its Collections Management Policy and Collections Plan, which examines the nature of the works and their relevance to the museum’s mission and collection. Contact Joyce Robinson, Assistant Director, at 814-863-9185 or email@example.com.
About the Museum
About the MuseumThe Palmer Museum of Art on the Penn State University Park campus is a free-admission arts resource for the University and surrounding communities in central Pennsylvania.
Areas of strength include the museum’s collection of American art from the late 18th century to the present, Old Master paintings, prints and photography, ceramics and studio glass, and a growing collection of modern and contemporary art. With a collection of 10,000 objects representing a variety of cultures and spanning centuries of art, the Palmer is the largest art museum between Pittsburgh and Philadelphia and is the leading cultural resource for the region.
The Palmer receives state arts funding support through a grant from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, a state agency funded by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and from the Happy Valley Adventure Bureau.