Brittany Webb at Pennsylvania Academy, plus Teachers Action Group and Share the Spotlight

PAFA's new Curator of the John Rhoden Collection comes on board April 24 to help PAFA promote the career of the under-known African American artist. Teachers Action Group is 9 years old and invites you to their conference, to help effect change in the schools and community. Also, Share the Spotlight offers tuition-free summer music camp for aspiring teen musicians.


We are excited to learn of the one-day Teachers Action Group Education for Liberation Conference May 5 with hands on workshops and speakers on fire to make the schools and Philadelphia better.  The TAG has been around for 9 years and the theme of this year’s conference is “Connecting the Dots: Building Solidarity to Transform our City and Schools, What does it mean for students, families, and educators to be in solidarity with each other?”  Want to attend? A voluntary contribution of $10 is asked.  But pay what you can. More below from the event signup page.

A scene from a previous Philadelphia Teacher Action Group Conference
A scene from a previous Philadelphia Teacher Action Group Conference

It is critical that we see how issues of education justice connect directly to broader movements for racial, economic and gender justice. When we connect the dots, we recognize our responsibility to deepen our analysis, strengthen our commitment to solidarity, and push ourselves toward further action.

At this conference, we invite participants to see the connections between struggles inside and outside of schools so that we challenge the social systems of violence that make it hard for any of us to show up whole.

Contributions are encouraged. The cost of putting on the conference is approximately $10/person. Pay what you can! No one is turned away for lack of funds.

Register for the conference.


Free summer music program for teens! Now in its second year in Philadelphia (and in NYC since 2014) Share the Spotlight is looking for talented young musicians. More below from Ashley De Vries, Director of Operations:

For our first season in Philadelphia last summer, we worked with 14 musicians ranging from 6th to 12th grade and held an end-of-the-season show at the Devon Theater in Northeast Philadelphia. We are holding auditions in April for this summer’s program.

Auditions for tuition-free summer music camp for teens take place April 14, 15 and 28.

Share the Spotlight is holding auditions this month for its second summer in Philadelphia. The nonprofit organization offers a tuition-free rock music program for musicians in sixth through 12th grade.

Students who are accepted will rehearse in a band format twice a week during the summer and perform an end-of-the-season show in a professional venue.

Auditions take place in Northeast Philadelphia at Keystone Soundworks, 4900 Longshore Ave., on April 14, 15 and 28. The program is open to musicians anywhere in Philadelphia and is easily accessible via SEPTA.

Students can audition on guitar, bass, drum set, keyboard or vocals. They should have some experience on their instrument and be highly motivated to practice and learn new parts.

For information or to schedule an audition, call (917) 575-9638, email or visit Share the Spotlight’s website.


Brittany Webb appointed Curator of John Rhoden Collection at Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts – Congratulations! More information below from PAFA.

Brittany Webb, new Curator of  the John Rhoden Collection at Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts
Brittany Webb, new Curator of the John Rhoden Collection at Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts

​In January, the Academy took over responsibility for more than 275 works by African American​ ​sculptor John Rhoden. In addition to Rhoden’s artwork, PAFA also received $5 million to fund a​ ​curator of the collection, organize a traveling exhibition, publish a major book about the artist
and facilitate the placement of his work into major museum collections throughout the United​ ​States.

Born in Birmingham, Alabama, Rhoden (1918-2001) specialized in sculpture and public art, was​ ​named a Fulbright Fellow in 1951 and had his work displayed at the Metropolitan Museum of​ ​Art, the Art Institute of Chicago, and the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, to name a few. He is best​ ​known in Philadelphia for the landmark sculpture outside the African American Museum in​ ​Philadelphia (AAMP) on Arch Street.

Rhoden passed away at the age of 82 and was survived by his wife, Richanda, who passed away​ ​in 2016. The executor of the Rhoden estate, Robert T. Anker, entrusted PAFA to gain Rhoden​ ​his long overdue recognition in the art world and ensure his legacy in the future.

“PAFA is committed to elevating the reputations for artists whose accomplishments have not​ ​been fully recognized, often for reasons of race and gender. Through a comprehensive study,​ ​traveling exhibition and distribution of his work, PAFA will give John Rhoden the attention he​ ​deserves,” said David Brigham, President and CEO of PAFA.

Ms. Webb is a Curatorial and Research Assistant at the African American Museum in​ ​Philadelphia (AAMP) and a doctoral candidate in anthropology at Temple University. Since​ ​2012, she has worked on AAMP’s special exhibitions across several genres, including fine art,​ ​costuming, textiles and history. Her dissertation research examines black exhibition production​ ​and its relationship to the sociopolitical landscape. She is the recipient of the Institute of​ ​Museum and Library Services Fellowship in Museum Practice (2012-2014) and holds a BA in Political Science from the University of Southern California.

“Everyone at PAFA is looking forward to welcoming Ms. Webb to the Museum team!” said​ ​Brooke Davis Anderson, Edna S. Tuttleman Director of the Museum. “Brittany impressed us​ ​with her hemispheric point of view around artists of African descent who have worked in the​ ​U.S., as well as her interest in elevating the posthumous career of John Rhoden. It is this global​ ​discourse that Brittany is committed to sharing with our audiences, in addition to her ambition to excite our audiences about Rhoden, that made her stand out for this new position.”​ ​Ms. Webb will join the staff at PAFA on April 24.