School District of Philadelphia students at The Barnes Foundation, 2015

My work is grounded in generosity. I support collaboration and inspiration. I counter cultures of exclusion and remove barriers to participation. My objective is to make arts and culture institutions, collections, and experiences more rewarding for more people.


Blake Bradford currently serves as a Senior Fellow at the Lenfest Center for Cultural Partnerships at Drexel University. His toolkit includes lessons learned over two decades of leadership in institutions and academia, emerging research in the arts and culture field, and tactics from social justice and anti-racist movements. This informs his development of new models and mechanisms for removing barriers to cultural engagement and participation.

His past appointments include serving as the Director of the Lincoln University-Barnes Foundation Museum Studies Program and as the inaugural Dr. Bernard C. Watson Director of Education at the Barnes Foundation. He has served as an adjunct professor on the faculty of the Socially Engaged Art Graduate Program at Moore College of Art and Design; at Tyler School of Art, Temple University; and in the Art Department at the Community College of Philadelphia. He is also the founder of Points of Entry, an initiative to transform the arts and culture workforce pipeline.

He also supports thriving institutions and communities through governance and advisory roles, including past service as a board member at Philagrafika and on the Collections Committee of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania. He currently serves as a board member at The Print Center and Ars Nova Workshop, and on the Collections and Exhibitions Committee of the African American Museum of Philadelphia. He is also a member of the Public Art Committee of the The Philadelphia Housing Development Corporation.

He shares his expertise in visual art and cultural heritage, community development, and program implementation via teaching, conferences and panels, media appearances, and both mass market and scholarly writing.

He holds a B.A. in Art History from Williams College and an M.A. in Art History from The University of Texas.