The Galleries at Moore support Moore College of Art & Design's educational mission and role as a cultural leader by providing a forum for exploring contemporary art and ideas, and enriching the artistic climate and intellectual climate of the college, the Greater Philadelphia community, and beyond. As a gateway between the College and the city of Philadelphia, The Galleries are a catalyst for creative exploration, experimentation and scholarship and function as a gathering place to meet, reflect, learn, challenge and create. The Galleries' exhibitions and programs – which are all free and open to the public – create community through dialogue and participation, and inspire an appreciation for the visual arts as a vital force in shaping contemporary culture.
Since founding its first contemporary art venue in 1968, Moore College of Art & Design has, over time, evolved and expanded its exhibition spaces to maintain its reputation as an innovative leader in Philadelphia's cultural community while simultaneously serving as an educational resource to students, faculty, residents and visitors.
The Goldie Paley Gallery was established in 1983 as an experimental, international exhibition and publications program featuring solo and group exhibitions, in a variety of media, by established and emerging national and international artists. As part of the programming in the Goldie Paley Gallery, the International Discovery Series was established in 1992 as a groundbreaking program that presented major exhibitions, publications and scholarly symposia focused on artists who were not widely known in the United States. Past artists in the series include: Artur Barrio (2006), Raymond Hains (2002), Valie Export (2000), Roman Singer (1997), Jean-Frédéric Schnyder (1994) and Terry Fox (1992).
In 1987 the Levy Gallery for the Arts in Philadelphia was created in response to a mayoral report revealing a “serious lack of support” for local talent. The Levy Gallery Slide Registry, one of the first of its kind in the country, furthered this mission by providing a resource for visiting curators and scholars to broaden awareness of the wide range of artists living in the nine-county Philadelphia area. In 1998, the Registry, with more than 1,500 participating artists, became one of the first online resources promoting Philadelphia-based artists globally via the Internet.
Serving the only art and design college for women in the country, The Galleries at Moore have featured a number of solo exhibitions dedicated to significant women artists and designers including: Jo Baer, Janet Biggs, Dara Birnbaum, Hanne Darboven, Jay DeFeo, Marlene Dumas, Barbara Ess, Valie Export, Viola Frey, Marisol, Jacqueline Matisse, Alice Neel, Adrian Piper and Faith Ringgold.
The Galleries have also presented a number of major group exhibitions featuring the work of women artists including: Guerrilla Girls Talk Back: A Retrospective: 1985–1991 (1993); The Philadelphia Ten: A Women's Artist Group 1917–1945 (1998); Painted Faces: Mary Cassatt, Karen Kilimnik, Alice Neel (2002); Gloria: Another Look at Feminist Art of the 1970s (2003); Women to Watch: Photography in Philadelphia (2007) and IN REPOSE: Images of Women by Women from the Collection of Dennis and Debra Scholl (2008).
The Galleries at Moore receives generous support from Moore College of Art & Design and the Friends of The Galleries at Moore. The Galleries also receive state arts funding support through a grant from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, a state agency funded by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency. Support also provided in part by the Philadelphia Cultural Fund. Additional program support comes from the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the Thomas Skelton Harrison Foundation, the Dolfinger-McMahon Foundation, The Elsie Lee Garthwaite Memorial Foundation, the Hamilton Family Foundation, and The Barra Foundation.