Photo Pop Philly: What you need to know

Get ready for your closeup at Photo Pop Philly. | Provided

If a picture is worth a thousand words, then a pop-up up interactive art exhibit that’s designed for picture-taking must be worth a million of them.

While these Instagram-forward installations have been popping up in major cities around the world, Philadelphia didn’t have one — at least until Photo Pop Philly came along.

“I went out to L.A. and visited what people are calling Instagram and selfie-worthy museums,” says Kate Marlys of Philly PR Girl. “I felt Philly needed one. We have such talent and creative people in our city.”

Twelve local artists are featured in Photo Pop Philly and include: Amberella, Alloyius Mcilwaine, Aye!CRTV,  Benjamin Howard, Catron Lee, Christine Moore, Get Up, Kara Khan’s Pop Up Polaroid, Nero, Martha Rich, Michael Lambui and These Pink Lips.

“They’re given a wall or a space to do something within the theme of Photo Pop Philly,” Marlys says. “Our inaugural theme is red, white and blue. It’s a fun place for people to take pictures. It’s patriotic but not political. I want people to come and escape the craziness that’s going on in our world.”

Photo Pop Philly is located inside of The Philadelphia Building (1315 Walnut St.), making use of a retail space that had been vacant for two years.

“It’s a Goldman Properties building. They’re the founders and curators of Wynwood Walls in Miami, and they’re the company that spearheaded the project to transform 13th Street in Philadelphia to make it what it is today,” Marlys says. “They’re very into the arts. It’s actually where Philly PR Girl office is. I went to them right away and they jumped at the idea.”

So what can attendees expect from the experience? First off, there are five different rooms to explore with your smartphones (or any camera of your choosing). Highlights include a freedom of speech room featuring artists like celebrity fashion designer These Pink Lips, as well as a life size mural of Sixers superstar Joel Embiid.

As far as tips for attendees go, making sure your phone is charged is super important.

“You’re going to take a lot of pictures,” says Marlys. “Take your time, bring your friends — it’s more fun with a big group. You can also come by yourself because we have a whole staff who will take your pictures.”

Tickets to Photo Pop Philly are $25 each, with children under five attending for free. There’s also a 10% discount for military, but be sure to bring your ID. When you book your ticket, you’ll also be asked to choose a one-hour time slot.

You can book your tickets online at

Photo Pop Philly is open through July 8. 

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