Super Bowl fever leads to ‘Museum Bowl’

The Philadelphia Art Museum. (B. Krist for Visit Philadelphia)
Photo by M. Fischetti for Visit Philadelphia

In one especially surprising example, the mild-mannered curators and art installers who staff the Philadelphia Museum of Art (PMA) were a little out of their element when they donned Birds regalia under the snow on Tuesday to sing the Eagles fight song from the famed front stairs of their historic museum.

“Today is not simply about the Eagles versus the Patriots, it’s about Philadelphia versus Boston,” PMA museum director Timothy Rub said at the event.

The art-lovers were there to publicize their proxy conflict in advance of the coming Big Game (Feb. 4) with their rival museum in Boston, the Museum of Fine Arts (MFA): #MuseumBowl.

The so-called #MuseumBowl competition is expected to yield plenty of good-natured roguery and teasing on social media and perhaps some “art-inspired trash talk,” including famous artworks re-designed with a little Photoshop magic to include Eagles and Patriots jerseys.

The winning city’s team will get an artwork loaned from the losing team for display in the victorious city.

Both museums have prized collections. Philadelphia has most of the masterpieces of French artist Marcel Duchamp, while Boston has masterpieces like JMW Turner’s The Slave Ship.

Check the #MuseumBowl hashtag on Twitter on Friday, Feb. 2, starting around 3 p.m., to see the art gifs and memes fly. 

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