America’s Oldest Continuous Art Colony Frames Its Best Art Season Yet

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PROVINCETOWN – More than 60 art galleries line the streets in America’s Oldest Continuous Art Colony, awaiting art-lovers looking for a new treasure to add to their collections. Summer gallery strolls and historic art museums welcome everyone to browse and interact with local and visiting artists, and year-round celebrations feature distinguished historic and modern-day arts performances.
There’s no shortage of opportunities to find a new masterpiece in Provincetown. In addition to the many galleries in town, museums such as the Fine Arts Work Center and Provincetown Art Association and Museum present noted exhibitions and readings, most of which are open to the public and offer guests the opportunity to view and purchase art.
“Come for the art, stay for the fun!” said Town Manager David Panagore. “Join us for a great season of gallery openings, sandy beaches and bayside dining and entertainment all within walking distance from each other,” he added.
Every year, the Pilgrim Monument and Provincetown Museum hosts its own special exhibit, with the current program highlighting “The Great Provincetown Summer – 1916,” presenting objects, art and narrative about a remarkable period when art and cultural luminaries converged in Provincetown and provided the foundation for the town’s rich cultural heritage.
Drawing thousands annually to experience Provincetown’s art history and culture, the town’s festivals and celebrations feature some of America’s most recognized artists and performers. The International Film Festival in June offers American and international narrative features, documentaries and short films and highlights rich and diverse subject matter of Provincetown.
Also in early summer is the annual International Encaustic Conference, an annual interdisciplinary event bringing a community of artists together with gallerists, curators, critics and collectors interested in the fascinating and ancient practice of encaustic painting – an ancient process of mixing colored pigments with melted beeswax before applying to a surface.
In September, the Afterglow Performance Arts Festival presents renowned and under-the-radar innovative stage artists evolving the world of live performance, honoring Provincetown as the birthplace of the Modern American Theater. In celebration of one who drew on Provincetown for inspiration, the Tennessee Williams Theater Festival opens again as the nation’s largest performing arts festival dedicated to the playwright, featuring a collection of landmark productions and plays that honor the Festival’s past and the legacy of Tennessee Williams.
In a town known for its festivals, the Provincetown Jazz festival is a highlight of August, when artists come from around the world to perform in Ptown, and in October, the Provincetown Dance festival introduces various dance performers and winners of the Provincetown Ballroom Dancing Competition.
For more than a century, Provincetown has remained an inspiration for artists in every medium – painting, sculpting, theater, literature, photography, dance and music. The atmosphere of experimentation, and unrivaled experiences, subjects, teaching and learning opportunities draw artists year-after-year to deepen their talents or add to their collections.
Provincetown’s creative productions are enhanced by its quaint, unique and award-winning accommodations and beaches, specialty shops, outdoor recreation, and highly rated restaurants. All of this is primed for the visitor in the place where the Pilgrim’s First Landed in 1620 and began the tradition of Ptown being a visitor’s mecca. Provincetown was recently designated one of the “18 most interesting U.S. destinations” by Expedia and named number one on its list of “2016 US Best Ranked Cities to Stay” by the travel website Trivago. Ptown is also consistently rated as one of best gay resort towns in the world, winning awards from, PlanetOut, and OutTraveler.
For more information about Provincetown’s arts and entertainment scene, and for a full schedule of events, visit