Happy New Year from Executive Director Monica Zimmerman

Dear Fleisher Community –

Cheers to a happy new year from your friends, colleagues and mentors in South Philadelphia. We’ve missed you all these last few weeks as we took a break to renew and reconsider and rest at the end of 2023.

The beginning of a new year represents a time to recommit to what we hold most dear, to the core values that make us who we are. It’s also my one-year anniversary leading this remarkable organization. As we begin our 126th year, I am struck by how passionate our community is, passionate about art and education, about equity and justice, and about building a world everyone feels inspired to live in. This spirited engagement and dream of a better world through art started with Samuel Fleisher’s original intent and continues unabated today. It’s why we just opened our doors, yet again, to hundreds of new children on Saturdays, why we embed artists in residency in our neighborhood public schools and why we are working so hard to share the music, food, and cultural activities of our community partners in another year of joyful programming.

It’s also a challenging time to be both passionately convicted and committed to embracing a diversity of perspectives and we must work diligently every day to keep the balance. To be a haven for all who want to engage creatively is a cultivated practice. You may have seen that we are currently looking for a new teammate to help guide and cement that work, which we are very excited about, and that is just one of many ways we are investing in our future.

I believe Fleisher’s campus will continue to be a place where we learn not just about ourselves but about each other, where we explore both new skills and new ideas, and where art and access continue to be defined as broadly as possible. Fleisher has done this for 125 years and at the top of 2024, we rededicate ourselves to this work.

We invite you to come and join us. Share your story. Make new friends. Listen. Learn. Make something beautiful with us.

Monica Zimmerman
Executive Director

Image: 125th Annual Adult Student Exhibition in Fleisher’s galleries.

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