Provincetown Art Association And Museum

460 Commercial Street
508-487-1750

The objects and purposes of this association shall be to promote and cultivate the practice and appreciation of all branches of the fine arts, to assemble and maintain in the town of Provincetown and environs a collection of works of art of merit, to hold exhibitions, and by forums, concerts and similar activities to promote education of the public in the arts and social intercourse between artists and laymen. To these ends it shall operate strictly within its charter as a nonprofit, educational, artistic and cultural organization.

The Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) was established in 1914 by prominent artists Charles Hawthorne, Oscar Gieberich, William Halsall, Gerrit Beneker, E. Ambrose Webster and several local business men and women. The donation of works by the organizing artists, and two juried exhibitions mounted in the summer of 1915, began PAAM’s traditions of collecting and exhibiting the work of the local community of artists. By then, the art community at the tip of Cape Cod had become the refuge of artists and expatriates returned from war-torn Europe, and Provincetown was firmly established as "The Biggest Art Colony in the World." (Boston Globe, 8/8/16) PAAM consolidated its role as the anchor of that colony through the purchase and refurbishing of its present building in 1919.

In the '20s and '30s, the philosophical wars being waged throughout the art world were also fought within the Association. Its artist founders had come out of the Impressionist tradition, and although a variety of styles had been represented in members’ exhibitions since the inception, PAAM’s "establishment" did not readily incorporate the modernist movement. Faced with aesthetic differences among its artist membership, PAAM maintained a balance. True to its mission, the organization represented both sides of the artistic argument, mounting separate "Modern" and "Regular" summer exhibitions between 1927 and 1937. Still, the conciliation reached in 1937 was only partial—instead of separate exhibitions, separate juries installed concurrent exhibitions on opposite gallery walls; a coin-flip determined that the modernists' work hung on the left. Throughout this period, much of the artistic argument took place in forums and discussions organized at PAAM by one side or the other.

The Depression years of the '30s and the blacked-out war years of the early '40s were difficult times for the town and the Association. Although annual shows were canceled and the books at one point showed a balance of only $3.60, volunteers managed to maintain a reduced schedule. And by 1947, the regular schedule of two summer exhibitions had been reestablished. The rise of abstract expressionism—intensified by the location of Hans Hofmann's summer school here—again riffled the deep divisions within the arts community during the '50s.
When PAAM celebrated its 50th anniversary in 1964 with a retrospective show of its major artists, the organization focused on gaining national attention for Provincetown's considerable contribution to American art. The effect was a boon for the organization. Activities increased, new galleries were added, the exhibition schedule expanded, a storage vault was built to house the expanding collection, and once again PAAM showed itself as the center of the local art world.

The organization continued to grow throughout the next three decades, always adhering to its 1921 mission statement: to exhibit and collect art works of merit, and to educate the public in the arts. The organizational structure of the museum has always included strong representation from both the artist and lay communities, fostering exhibitions and programs that serve both audiences. The dual purpose of the organization—to be a collecting museum and a professional artists' association—has been consistently supported over the course of its history. The collection has been the basis for many exhibitions and has served scholars, researchers and other museums. Including over 1000 artists who have lived or worked on the outer Cape, the collection is a burgeoning historical record of the art colony. PAAM continues to increase the number and range of works by earlier artists and to include works by contemporary artists. The artists' association has been a vital source of contemporary exhibitions; it also enables PAAM to employ the talents of working artists with exceptional ability as instructors of classes, workshops, lectures and demonstrations.

PAAM’s recent renovation and expansion has improved its facilities to reflect its mission. The contemporary wing—adjacent to the original building, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places—enables artist members to show their work in elegant galleries beside our significant American art collection and other world-class exhibitions. The galleries also offer accomodating venues for our chamber music, jazz, dance and spoken word performances. The new studio classrooms offer appropriate spaces for our children and youth education programs, and for our accredited adult courses in the Museum School at PAAM



Reviews

Rebecca Brennan

Rating:
Sunday, Sep. 24, 2017
Extremely rude staff. I walked in to look for my mother, who had went in to use their public bathroom, and the employee at the counter was absolutely horrible. I admit, I did poke my head into the art room to look for my mother, but I didn't even step into it, and it wouldn't have been difficult for him to simply say, "excuse me, can I help you?". I was there with my twelve year old brother. Obviously we weren't looking to steal glances at the overpriced, nonsensical modern art you could see through the window. Instead of politely correcting us, the man said "excuse you?", and then "and?" when I apologized and said I was looking for my mother who had come in. The other man, whom I believe worked there as well, looked at him as if he was an idiot, and then kindly directed me to my mom.

Ilan Goldman

Rating:
Sunday, May 29, 2016
Mid-size museum, not bad especially if you are already there, if not, it is not a must as there are so many other great galleries to see. Entrance fee is typically about $10 but they wave the fee on specific days.

Heather Blume

Rating:
Sunday, Dec. 17, 2017

J B

Rating:
Saturday, Dec. 9, 2017

spoorthi Shres

Rating:
Wednesday, Oct. 18, 2017

Recent News

Provincetown Art Association and Museum Presents Abstract Climates: Helen Frankenthaler in Provincetown

This summer, Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) presents Abstract Climates: Helen Frankenthaler in Provincetown, an exhibition of paintings by one of the most influential abstract artists of her time. The focus of the exhibition—one…

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Provincetown Art Association and Museum News and Announcements - October 2017

Click Here to view the Provincetown Art Association and Museum News and Announcements - October…

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Provincetown Art Association and Museum News and Announcements July 2017

Click here to view the Provincetown Art Association and Museum News and Announcements July

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Provincetown Art Association and Museum's Summer Hours Go Into Effect June 1 at 11am

Provincetown, MA: Provincetown Art Association and Museum's (PAAM) summer hours go into effect on Thursday, June 1 and vary slightly throughout the season: JUNEOpen daily at 11amSaturday-Thursday: until 5pmFriday: until 10pmFree on Fridays after 5pmJ…

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Four Exhibitions Open at Provincetown Art Association and Museum on Friday, May 12 at 6pm

Provincetown, MA: Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) invites the public to a celebratory reception for three exhibitions on Friday, May 12 at 6pm: Marian Roth: On Bended Light, Tod Lindenmuth, COLOR/AID, and Emerging Artists.MARIAN ROTH: …

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Provincetown Art Association and Museum Holds Free Information Sessions for Artist Grant Applicants

Provincetown, MA -- Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) is holding online and in-person information sessions, free of charge, for applicants to their annual Lillian Orlowsky and William Freed (LOWF) Grant. The online session takes place on…

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Provincetown Art Association and Museum Hosts Potluck Opening Reception For Three Exhibitions

Provincetown, MA: Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) warmly invites the public to an opening reception of three exhibitions on Friday, January 13 at 6pm. This opening is a potluck: guests are asked to bring a dish large enough to share wi…

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2017 Grant Application Available

Provincetown, MA: The application for the Lillian Orlowsky and William Freed Foundation Grant offered by Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) is now available at www.paam.org/grant . The postmark deadline is April 3, 2017.Artists selected b…

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Provincetown Art Association and Museum's Presents Summer Exhibition Line-Up

Provincetown, MA---Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) is very proud to announce the line-up of exhibitions on view this summer. Opening receptions are free and open to the public. The Museum is free Friday evenings after 5PM, but occasion…

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The Annual Members' 12x12 Exhibition and Silent Auction at Provincetown Art Association and Museum

Provincetown, MA---Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) invites its members to submit to the annual Members' 12x12 Exhibition and Silent Auction, on view August 5-September 24, with a free opening reception on Friday, August 12 at 8pm. Drop…

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Provincetown Art Association and Museum Announces 2016 Recipients of Lillian Orlowsky and William Freed Foundation Grant

Provincetown, MA: Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) is thrilled to announce the 2016 recipients of the Lillian Orlowsky and William Freed Foundation Grant: Frank Gregory (Greenfield, MA), Masako Kamiya (Dorchester, MA), Marjorie Kaye (Ca…

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PAAM's Art Reach Program and Shirl Roccapriore Present the 2016 Oils by the Sea Gallery Youth Exhibition and Fundraiser

Provincetown, MA---This year marks the third summer Shirl Roccapriore, artist and director of the Oils by the Sea Gallery, will feature the work of young artists from the Provincetown Art Association and Museum's (PAAM) Art Reach program. The annual …

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Nauset Regional High School Sophomore Kaleigh Mason Receives Robyn R. Watson Scholarship at the PAAM

Provincetown, MA---The summer of 2016 is turning into an eventful one for South Yarmouth sixteen-year-old Kaleigh Mason. Mason has been a member of the Provincetown Art Association and Museum's (PAAM) Youth Arts Programs, Art Reach and Art on the Edg…

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Art of the Garden Exhibition at Provincetown Art Association and Museum Features Original Works Created in Youth Employment Program

Provincetown, MA---Every summer Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) presents an exhibition of floral works from the Permanent Collection in conjunction with the Secret Garden Tour (Sunday, July 17). This year's exhibition also features lim…

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Call for Work: Members' Juried Exhibition at Provincetown Art Association and Museum

Provincetown, MA---Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) invites all members to submit to the Members' Juried: Spring exhibition, on view May 6-June 26 with a free opening reception on Friday, May 6 at 7PM.Drop-Off Day is Tuesday, May 3 from…

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Summer Internships at Provincetown Art Association and Museum

Provincetown, MA---The Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) seeks interns for the 2016 summer season in six fields: Collection and Archives; Special Events; Museum School; Visitor Services; Youth and K-12 Education; Children's Art Education…

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Deadline for PAAM's Lillian Orlowsky and William Freed Foundation Grant on April 1, 2016

Provincetown, MA---The deadline for the annual Lillian Orlowsky and William Freed (LOWF) Foundation Grant, offered by Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) is coming up soon, on April 1. To download an application, please visit www.paam.org/…

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Provincetown Art Association and Museum Seeks Submissions for Members' Juried Exhibition

Provincetown, MA -- The Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) seeks submission for a juried exhibition, on view February 12-April 3, 2016 with a free opening reception on Friday, February 12 at 6pm. Drop-Off Day for this exhibition is Tuesda…

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Three Exhibitions Open with Potluck Reception at Provincetown Art Association and Museum

Provincetown, MA -- The public is warmly invited to a potluck opening reception for three exhibitions at Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) on Friday, January 15 at 6pm. Guests are asked to bring a dish large enough to share with six peop…

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Gallery Conversations Series at Provincetown Art Association and Museum Connects Public with Artists and Art Professionals

Provincetown, MA -- Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) proudly presents Gallery Conversations series, a series of free discussions, exhibition tours, and panels held at the Museum during the off-season months. Join artists Megan Hinton, M…

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Free Workshops for Members at Provincetown Art Association and Museum

Provincetown, MA -- Each winter, Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) hosts a series of free workshops taught by volunteers exclusively for members of the organization. Anyone can become a member at anytime by signing up at www.paam.org/mem…

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Provincetown Art Association and Museum Announces Lineup of Spring Workshops, Offered January-May 2016

Provincetown, MA -- With the changing of the seasons comes new workshop offerings in the fine arts here at PAAM's Lillian Orlowsky and William Freed Museum School. Single session to multiweek workshops are offered in painting, drawing, printmaking, d…

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Museum Travel Alliance

Provincetown, MA---Members of the Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) now have a new benefit: exclusive travel opportunities. PAAM recently became a member of the Museum Travel Alliance (MTA), a consortium of museums with a shared interest…

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Provincetown Art Association and Museum Announces Lineup of Spring Workshops, Offered January-May

Provincetown, MA---With the changing of the seasons comes new workshop offerings in the fine arts here at PAAM's Lillian Orlowsky and William Freed Museum School. Single session to multiweek workshops are offered in painting, drawing, printmaking, di…

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Provincetown Art Association and Museum Launches Virtual Drawing Group Facilitated by Artist Joerg Dressler

Provincetown, MA---The Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) and artist Joerg Dressler launch a "Virtual Drawing Group" this January, a first for the Museum. Participants will be given access to a private blog where a daily photo prompt will…

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Fall Workshops in the Fine Arts at Provincetown Art Association and Museum

Provincetown, MA--- The studios at the Museum School at Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) are already filling up with participants in the fall workshop program. These fine art sessions in drawing, painting, printmaking, mixed media, and …

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Recipients of 2014 Painter Grant Offered by Provincetown Art Association and Museum Exhibit Their Work This September

Provincetown, MA - The Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) congratulates the 2014 Lillian Orlowsky and William Freed Foundation Grant recipients Stephanie London of Glendale, CA; Changha Hwang of New York, NY; Santiago Hernandez of Medford…

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Mid-Career Survey of Paintings by Cape School Artist Hilda Neily at Provincetown Art Association and Museum Opens in September

Provincetown, MA - This September, the Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) presents a mid-career survey of paintings by Hilda Neily, curated by artist Midge Battelle. The public is invited to a gallery talk with Neily and Battelle as part …

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Amy Arbus Photography Exhibition Opens at Provincetown Art Association and Museum in September

Provincetown, MA - Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) is thrilled to present After Images: Photographs by Amy Arbus, curated by Jane Paradise. The public is invited to a free celebratory reception on Friday, September 25 at 8pm.Amy Arbus …

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Lillian Orlowsky and William Freed Foundation Grant Recipients Announced

Provincetown, MA - The Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) congratulates the 2015 Lillian Orlowsky and William Freed Foundation Grant recipients Dorothy Annette Robinson of Peekskill, NY; James Gouldthorpe of Richmond, CA; Lauren Mantecon …

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Provincetown Art Association and Museum Presents From Palette to Plate: A Weekend of Food and Art with Chef Barbara Lynch and Artist Megan Hinton

Provincetown, MA - Provincetown Art Association and Museum is thrilled to present an extraordinary event, From Palette to Plate: A Weekend of Food and Art with James Beard Award winning chef Barbara Lynch and Cape Cod artist Megan Hinton. The week…

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Provincetown Art Association and Museum Presents Paul Resika: Paintings, 1947-2014

Provincetown, MA -- Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) is thrilled to present selected works by Paul Resika in the exhibition Paul Resika: Paintings, 1947-2014, curated by artists Don Beal and Rob DuToit. Best known for his paintings of i…

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Fine Arts Work Center & Provincetown Art Association and Museum Present Robert Motherwell: A Centennial Celebration

Provincelown, MA -- The Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, Massachusetts and the Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) announce details for Robert Motherwell: A Centennial Celebration. The two-week festivities will include exhibitions of…

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Exhibition - Jay Critchley, Incorporated

Provincetown, MA - Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) is thrilled to kick off the summer season  with a survey of over 30 years of work by Provincetown artist Jay Critchley. Jay Critchley, Incorporated, curated by Bailey Bob Bailey, is C…

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Provincetown Art Association and Museum Newsletter - April 2015

OPENING IN APRILTwo Exhibitions Opening at Provincetown Art Association and Museum on Friday, April 17 at 6pmProvincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) invites the public to celebrate the opening of two exhibitions on Friday, April 17 at 6pm.PAAM…

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Register for a Summer Workshop!

The Summer Program Is Live!We hope you'll join us for fun-filled learning at the Museum School this June through September. We're proud to offer fine art workshops ranging from a single-day introduction to a five-day intensive. Our non-toxic studiosÂ…

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Call For Work: Members' Open Exhibition at Provincetown Art Association and Museum

Provincetown, MA -- Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) seeks submissions for the upcoming Members' Open exhibition, on view March 20-April 26, 2015. Drop-off day is Tuesday, March 17 from 12-4pm which is also pick-up day for artists inclu…

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Call for Work: Provincetown Art Association and Museum Seeks Submissions for Members' Juried Exhibition 2015 January

Provincetown, MA - Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) seeks submissions for the upcoming Members' Juried exhibition. There is no theme or size restriction for this exhibition, and all types of media are welcome. The drop-off day for all w…

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Call For Work: PAAM Artwork Review

Provincetown, MA -- The Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) is proud to announce a new series of artwork reviews beginning this month.The first session of the PAAM Artwork Reviews is scheduled for Monday, January 26, from 6-8pm, at the Lil…

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Spring 2015 Workshops in the Fine Arts Announced

Provincetown, MA -- The Lillian Orlowsky and William Freed Museum School at the Provincetown Art Association and Museum is proud to present our spring workshops running from January through May, 2015.The Lillian Orlowsky and William Freed Museum Scho…

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Call For Work: PAAM100 Members' Juried Exhibition at Provincetown Art Association and Museum

Date: November 21-January 18,2015 Artist Drop off: Tuesday, November 18, 12-4pmResults announced on www.paam.org Thursday, November 20 after 3pm Opening reception: Friday, December 5, 6pmProvincetown, MA---Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PA…

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Fine Arts Workshops at Provincetown Art Association and Museum

Provincetown, MA---Despite the impending winter, The Lillian Orlowsky and William Freed Museum School at the Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) has some great upcoming workshops in the fine arts beginning in the coming weeks.Painters will…

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Provincetown Cultural Council Seeks Funding Proposals to Support Cultural Activities

Proposals for community-oriented arts, humanities, and science programs due October 15, 2014 The Provincetown Cultural Council has set an October 15, 2014 postmark deadline for organizations, schools and individuals to apply for grants that support c…

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Tsao and McKown Architects Launch Re[Framing] Provincetown Exhibition to Celebrate PAAM Centennial

Provincetown, MA - Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) is pleased to partner with Tsao and McKown Architects for a new installation and exhibition in conjunction with the PAAM100 centennial celebrations. Re[Framing] Provincetown: Animating…

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Lillian Orlowsky and William Freed Foundation Grant Recipients Announced

Provincetown, MA - The Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) congratulates the 2014 Lillian Orlowsky and William Freed Foundation Grant recipients Stephanie London of Glendale, CA; Changha Hwang of New York, NY; Santiago Hernandez of Medford…

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Painters on the Beach: A Celebration of Plein Air Painting

Provincetown, MA - For over a century, artists have been painting the sights seen from the beaches of Provincetown. Join us for a plein air painting event to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) and …

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