Our History

It all started in the Spring of 1929...

If you happened to wander into Phillips’ Mill in the spring of 1929

provided you were a member, you would have witnessed the first organized exhibit of member artists. Such luminaries as John Folinsbee, Daniel Garber, Mary Perkins Taylor, and Henry B. Snell, among others, displayed their paintings inside the 18th century historic structure. Its next exhibition was held in the fall of that year (view the complete catalog). The Phillips’ Mill Art Committee is dedicated to continuing the annual show now open to artists living within a 25-mile perimeter of the Mill. The Mill itself is managed under the auspices of the Phillips’ Mill Community Association, which oversees other events in addition to the art show, with a respectful nod to the original goals of the first Committee.

Bucks County becomes more accessible

As transportation to the bucolic Bucks County region became more accessible from urban centers such as Philadelphia and New York City, it drew more and more artists, writers, and other creative spirits. By 1939, the tight knit members of the Mill agreed to allow three non-members to exhibit that year; an innovation leading to juried shows for regional artists starting in 1945. The war years saw a suspension of the shows, since rationing made travel difficult. By 1949, the show had become so well-respected and popular, that artist John Folinsbee, noted Pennsylvania Impressionist, chaired the 20th anniversary exhibit.

Phillips’ Mill holds its 91st Art Show online!

As one of the oldest art shows in the United States, the Phillips’ Mill Art Exhibition has persisted through floods, snow storms and a world war. The little “art colony” that started at the Mill grew to become the New Hope School that played a crucial role in what came to be known as Pennsylvania Impressionist Art. Our artists’ works are in national museums and still set records at auction. So whether there’s a flood threatening our show or a pandemic we always adapt and that’s why the historic Phillips’ Mill Art Show will be here for a very long time in the future.

The Art Show Today

Today, The Phillips’ Mill Art Committee works diligently each year to launch the autumn exhibition, a juried show now encompassing all styles of original art from traditional landscapes to post-modern interpretations. Sculptures are included as part of the juried art, and visitors from around the globe eagerly attend what has evolved into a premier art show for the entire region.

Please Join Us!

If you are interested in joining the Art Exhibition Committee,  contact artshow@phillipsmill.org.

75th Anniversary Illustrated Catalogue

To further explore the Mill’s history and the artists who have shown there, check out the 75th anniversary illustrated catalogue produced for the 2005 show. It includes a comprehensive history of the Mill and the fascinating people who inhabited this region and who helped fashion the original organization. You may purchase the beautifully-illustrated book at the sales desk. At other times email artshow@phillipsmill.org