Friday, August 8, 2008

ARTini: Art Shaken, Not Stirred

ARTini: Art Shaken, Not Stirred was Passport's inaugural exhibit, hosted at the Bloomfield/Garfiield Activity Center (Thanks BGC!). The exhibit was held during the Unblurred Art Cubed Event on June 6th, 2008 at 113 North Pacific, just off Penn Avenue. ARTini featured thirty two of Pittsburgh’s finest artists from all cultures and economic backgrounds and showcasing dozens of art styles. The opening night of the ARTini Exhibition and Sale lived up to its promise to be a stellar experience with something for everyone from paintings in oil and acrylic, to sculptures, abstracts, mosaic, fiber art, mixed media, collage, pop art, salvage art and even an installation by students from the Digital Fabrication Lab at Carnegie Mellon University.

Curators of the exhibition with support from Friendship Development, Christine Bethea, Brenda Brown and Leslie Ansley of Passports: Art of Diversity had been looking for reason and a location do such an eclectic event. Art Cubed, a partnership between the Penn Avenue Arts District, East Liberty, and Lawrenceville proved to be pivotal.

“As far as we're concerned, there are never enough opportunities to show-off all the great talent the Pittsburgh region has to offer,” said Bethea. “We may not have them all here, but we have most ot he best and creative."

Bethea, Brown, and Ansley, all artists themselves, plan a series of other exhibitions in the upcoming months on Penn Avenue and around the city including one in September featuring artists who are blind and visually impaired is scheduled for September 5th. “Their work is amazing, “said Brown, who will lead a sculpture workshop prior to the event. “We are inviting other artists to be part of their exhibition as well. We believe it will be the first time the two art communities have ever shown work together in the city.

Another project the group has in the works is a global inspired arts fair called “Sugar and Spice,” planned for October. “We have some wonderful programs in mind. ARTini is just the tip of the arts iceberg,” said Ansley, who with Bethea and Brown are recent recipients of a Sprout Fund Seed Award.

The Sprout Fund is a nonprofit organization supporting innovative ideas and grassroots community projects that are catalyzing change in Pittsburgh.

Also supporting the ARTini event on June 6th is Hill House Association whose staff will be on hand to sell advance tickets to a rare performance of Issac Hayes with the Pittsburgh Symphony scheduled for later in the month.

For more details about the exhibit, please see the ARTini page