Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations
Arts, Sports & Culture
Shuttered factories, abandoned warehouses and boarded up store fronts are being re-purposed as galleries and performance spaces by people with passion and vision. Art From the Ground Up was created to provide a showcase for some of the most innovative members of Pittsburgh’s emerging arts community.00000176-e6f7-dce8-adff-f6f7706f0000Art From the Ground Up is hosted by Bob Studebaker and is a monthly series highlighting small grass roots arts organizations and individual artists that take non-traditional approaches to the creation, presentation, and even the definition of art.Know an organization Bob should check out? Email him with your suggestions.

How Lawrenceville Artists Have Held Strong Through Neighborhood Revitalization

kelly.JPG
Lawrenceville Art
/

As Pittsburgh neighborhoods, like Lawrenceville, undergo revitalization, art can often reflect changes.

Furniture designer Joe Kelly has been there since the beginning. Kelly spent a lot of time investing in the changes that helped make Lawrenceville one of the city’s most popular – and valuable – neighborhoods.

“Well, this was post-steel industry decline,” Kelly said. “This was a distressed area at that time.”

Kelly said he and other industrial artists in the neighborhood joined forces to boost neighborhood appeal.

“Because Lawrenceville was thought to be a rough neighborhood, we changed the whole perception and branding of the neighborhood,” he said. “I took my entire board of directors to CMU and we went through a whole branding process with the industrial design department.”

Artist Linda Price-Sneddon recently moved back to Pittsburgh. She said she worried about the negative side effects that can sometimes come along with neighborhood revitalization – like getting priced out.

But Kelly said from the beginning, he encouraged local artists to buy their properties.

“Inevitably, artists do get priced out of a neighborhood like this as it grows, but if you own your property, you don’t,” Kelly said.