The mission of the Erie Art Museum is to maintain an institution of excellence dedicated to the promotion and advancement of the visual arts by

  • developing and maintaining a quality art collection,
  • encouraging art in all its forms,
  • fostering lifelong art learning, and
  • building community among artists, art students and the public.

Virtual Tour

EAM Welcomes Our New Director: Joshua Helmer

It is with great excitement and pleasure that I introduce the new Executive Director of the Erie Art Museum, Joshua R. Helmer. Josh comes to us having spent the last four years leading institutional change at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, where he served as the Assistant Director for Interpretation. While at the PMA, Josh was tasked with leading the museum in a complete rethinking of how it engaged its nearly 800,000 visitors a year. He also brings a background in art history, earning his undergraduate degree from Hartwick College and a master’s degree from Syracuse University.

During his interview with the EAM board last month, Josh shared his enthusiasm for leading our organization and leveraging his past experiences at one of the largest art museums in America to guide the EAM into the future. Ultimately, we could not be happier with the results of our search. With Josh, we’re getting a nationally recognized thought leader, whose passion and vision promises to take our museum to all kinds of new and exciting places.
Speaking for the entire EAM organization, we are energized by the potential Josh brings and are confident that he will enhance the reputation of the Erie Art Museum as the cultural anchor for our region, as well as driving forward our efforts to be an inspiring institution at the core of efforts to revitalize downtown Erie.

I also want to assure you, the EAM Board of Directors is committed to providing the strong leadership at our level that is needed to support Josh’s plans for the expanded success of the museum.A number of significant multiyear gifts have brought a measure of stability to our operational budget that is encouraging, and we are steadfast in our focus on long-term financial solvency, including growth of an endowment to further support the strategic plans of the Board and our new director.

I am confident that we now have exactly the type of dynamic, enthusiastic leader the Erie Art Museum—and this region—needs. Please join me in welcoming Josh to our community.

Stephen Porter, EAM Board of Directors President

Erie Insurance Donates $150,000 to Erie Art Museum, Names Education Wing

The Erie Art Museum received $150,000 gift from downtown neighbor, Erie Insurance. The gift was announced on Thursday, September 7th at a press conference in the Museum’s Main Gallery, with Erie Art Museum Board Members and Erie Insurance Executives in attendance. In recognition of the gift, the Museum will rename the education wing, The Erie Insurance Education Wing.

The gift brings momentum and excitement for the future of the Erie Art Museum. Susan Black-Keim, Interim Director said, “What a wonderful way to begin the next phase of EAM’s creative programing and service to our community.  Thank you Erie Insurance for your generosity, your partnership and your support of the EAM’s future success.”

The Erie Art Museum Board of Directors is thrilled that their downtown neighbor is interested in having a future hand in the cultural anchor of our city. Erie Art Museum Board President, Steve Porter said, “Speaking on behalf of the Board and the community we represent, we are grateful for this tangible show of support from Erie Insurance.  Even more important however, the Erie Art Museum and Erie Insurance are more than good neighbors, we are partners – working together to make our neighborhood the cornerstone of a diverse, livable and culturally vibrant urban core of Erie.”

Ann Scott, Manager of Community Outreach at Erie Insurance said, “Erie Insurance is proud to support the ongoing efforts of the Erie Art Museum as they continue to expand their presence in the historic Bonnell Block. We recognize and applaud the Museum’s work in advancing the visual arts through education, performance, and high quality art in all its forms. The Erie Art Museum is a treasure enjoyed by our employees and their families, our neighborhood, and everyone in the community throughout Erie County, Pennsylvania, and the country. We’re pleased to be able to help them continue to be a sustainable asset into the future.”

Erie Insurance has been a longtime supporter of the Erie Art Museum. Over the years, Erie Insurance has supported several Museum initiatives including; The Picture a Place Campaign, the EITC program (Comprehensive School Tour Program), Blues & Jazz Festival, Mid Day Art Break, Second Sundays, ARTrageous, and the Bike Rack program.