Eric Pryor Chosen as the Next President of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts

The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in Philadelphia has announced that Eric Pryor has been appointed president of the historic museum and college, beginning January 18, 2022.

Founded in 1805, the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts offers undergraduate and graduate programs in the fine arts, innovative exhibitions of historic and contemporary American art, and a world-class collection of American art. The academy enrolls about 135 undergraduate students and 50 graduate students, according to the most recent data from the U.S. Department of Education. African Americans make up 7 percent of the student body.

“I am profoundly honored to be taking on the leadership of this historic and celebrated institution,” said Pryor. “I am eager to work in partnership with the PAFA board, staff, faculty, students, and alumni, and start writing its next magnificent chapter together. I’m also delighted to be returning to Philadelphia and its varied communities. It is a city of great art and artistry, with PAFA as one of its crown jewels.”

Pryor comes to the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts from the Harlem School of the Arts in New York City, where he has served as president since 2015. Previously he served as executive director of The Center for Arts Education in New York City, was executive director of the New Jersey State Museum, and was president of the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey. Pryor began his career as executive director of the Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation’s Center for Arts and Culture in Brooklyn, New York.

Pryor is a graduate of Wayne State University in Detroit, where he majored in painting. He holds a master of fine arts degree from Temple University in Philadelphia.


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