Mission & Values

Mission Statement

Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens (PMG) inspires creativity and community engagement by educating the public about folk, mosaic, and visionary art. PMG preserves, interprets, and provides access to Isaiah Zagar’s unique mosaic art environment and his public murals. 

Values Statement

Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens:

  • Champions originality and embraces the creative process unbound by conventional norms. This is exemplified by our thinking and actions, and the unique experience we provide our audience.
  • Welcomes our visitors and staff with an open-mind. We believe in creating a safe space that embraces a diversity of culture, race/ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, religious affiliation, age, and physical or mental ability. Our policies and programming encourages connecting to others with respect and dignity.
  • Values community. We unify individuals through shared experiences and build relationships with diverse Philadelphia residents, businesses and neighboring nonprofits.
  • Believes in inspiring others. The artwork and programs provoke inspiration through curiosity, self-expression and awe.
  • Approaches our daily operations, programming, and the interpretation of Isaiah Zagar’s art with a lighthearted, celebratory attitude. We believe in working hard while still maintaining levity and humor.

Equity Commitments

One of the values of Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens (PMG) is to be a safe space that is welcoming and open to all who walk through our doors and engage with our organization. As such, PMG is committed to keeping Diversity, Equity, Accessibility and Inclusion (DEAI) at the forefront of all we do. While this is an ongoing effort, below are some examples of the practices we have put in place thus far:

  • PMG created a DEAI Committee composed of front-of-house staff, managers from multiple departments, and board members. This committee took part in the OF/BY/FOR/ALL Change Network in 2022 and continues to work to keep the organization focused on our DEAI goals.
  • PMG declared Juneteenth an official holiday and part-time staff receive the same holiday pay they receive for all current, federally-recognized holidays. We also provide free public programming on Juneteenth to highlight the stories of the Black Americans who have impacted our community and Isaiah Zagar’s work.
  • PMG provides de-escalation training to support front-of-house staff who work daily with a wide variety of visitors and opinions, many of which may be different from our own.
  • As art and art environments are often a form of therapy for both the viewer and creator, PMG has been focusing more deeply on highlighting and educating about the importance of mental health and the role it plays in our organizations and within the art community.  This includes partnering with the PEACE program to provide young adults in the early stages of psychosis with access to the arts as well as workshops and tours for Ready, Willing, & Able, an organization for men who have been recently incarcerated or experienced homelessness.
  • PMG has continued to focus our efforts on diversifying our Board of Directors, and has been committed to maintaining a Board that is comprised of at least 50% BIPOC members.
  • PMG focuses on contributions of the BIPOC community for our exhibitions, residencies, and programs. We strive to ensure that at least 40% of our programming features Black artists, and that at least 75% of our overall programming features people of color, women, or members of the queer community.
  • PMG commits to seeking and providing ongoing professional development opportunities for board and staff members, and prioritizes staff members who are people of color for these opportunities.
  • PMG remains committed to accessibility for economically disadvantaged communities. This includes offering Visionary Visits Tours to provide discounted guided tours and virtual experiences for groups with a financial need, with a special preference given to Philadelphia public and charter schools. PMG also participates in the ACCESS program, providing residents who receive SNAP benefits with $2 admission to the museum, and provides access to free art materials through our Community Art Closet. 
  • While we acknowledge permanent limitations, PMG is focused on making our space as physically accessible as possible. This includes changes made to our Back Gallery in 2024 to make the space more easily accessed by those with wheelchairs, offering Touch Tours for the visually impaired, and offering sensory bags for our guests with Autism.

We want to emphasize that the commitments above are not the end of this journey, and that we are continuing to expand their scope. To add your thoughts on how we can improve, please reach out to magicgardenscommunity@gmail.com.

Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens respectfully recognizes that it is located on the ancestral homeland of the Lenape.