Fahy was raised in Philadelphia, PA where he graduated at the University of Virginia in 1962. After graduation, he traveled to Europe and begin to study Ghirlandaio, following the suggestion of John Pope-Hennessy. Fahy entered Harvard studying under Sydney J. Freedberg and Federico Zeri. He received the National Gallery of Art's David H. Finley fellowship in 1964 allowing him to travel in Europe, especially in Italy. In Florence he was able to study at the Biblioteca Berenson, thanks to a Villa I Tatti Fellowship. He received his Ph.D. from Harvard University in 1968 with a thesis on Ghirlandaio's followers under James Ackerman. Fahy was appointed by the Metropolitan Museumn of Art as a consultant to the Department of European Paintings in 1968, and taught in New York University's Institute of Fine Arts from 1969 until 1976. He joined the Met Museum as curator-in-charge in 1970. In 1973 Fahy resigned in order to head the Frick Collection, where he oversaw the expansion of the institution and incentivated the Museum's policy of organizing small but highly scholarly exhibitions. In 1986 he returned to the Metropolitan as the Chair of European Paintings, succeeding Pope-Hennessy. He remained at the Met as Chair until his retirement in 2009. From 2004 until his death (2018) he was a member of the Federico Zeri Foundation Scientific Committee.
Fahy, E. (1976). Some Followers of Domenico Ghirlandaio. New York: Garland
Fahy, E. (1973). The Wrightsman Pictures. New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art
Fahy, E. (1979). The Legacy of Leonardo: Italian Renaissance Paintings from Leningrad. Washington, DC: National Gallery of Art
Fahy, E. (1983). Metropolitan Flowers. New York: Abrams
Fahy, E. (2000). L' Archivio storico fotografico di Stefano Bardini: Dipinti, disegni, miniature, stampe. Firenze: Bruschi
Shirey, D. L. (1973, May 20). Everett Fahy of the Met Is Named Frick Director. New York Times, 63
Russell, J. (1986, July 31). New Head of European Art at Met. New York Times, 16