The griffin was adopted as the symbol for the museum in the 1970's. There are several griffins sitting atop the pediments and corners of the building.
The steps leading up to the front entrance to the museum were made famous when they were featured in the 1976 film "Rocky."
Before the building was opened, Philadelphia's art museum was house in Memorial Hall in Fairmount Park, the only surviving building from the Centennial Exposition of 1876.
Construction of the current building began in 1919, and the first section was completed in the spring of 1928.