It’s shaping up as a busy Dollar Bank Three Rivers Arts Festival
The free festival runs June 5-14. Programmed by the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust
, it includes the familiar Artists’ Market and free concerts in Point State Park. (As previously announced
, performers include the likes of Neko Case, Richard Thompson, Benjamin Booker, Rhiannon Giddens and The Felice Brothers.)
But there are also a theme and some new wrinkles.
The theme, as announced at yesterday’s press event Downtown by the Trust’s Veronica Corpuz, is Unseen/Unheard. That means a focus on “social justice, equity and empowerment” for marginalized communities, including people of color and people with disabilities, Corpuz said.
Attractions include performances and other programming by Pittsburgh's 1Hood
, which teaches media analysis and production to young people.
Corpuz also promised a focus on literary arts, so look for poetry readings and the like, even on the festival's main stage, in Point State Park.
Another big addition is the CREate Festival
, organized by the Pittsburgh Technology Council. The festival welcomes national presenters to the Wyndham Hotel June 10-12, showcasing 50 new technology projects, with workshops and hands-on opportunities.
TRAF also expands its public-art offerings, from three last year to four this year. The projects, curated by writer and art historian Nadine Wasserman (who's also a frequent CP
contributor) include: Michael Arcega’s “Baby: Corps of Re-Discovery,” an outrigger canoe at the Point that plays off Lewis & Clark’s journey; Rudy Shepherd’s "Black Rock Negative Energy Absorber," a 25-foot statue; Fernando Orellanga’s “Confluence,” composed of 60 military-style hospital beds, topped with concrete dogs; and, in the old Visitors and Convention building, M. Michelle Illuminato’s Lost & Found Factory, where artists will recreate lost items for their original owners.
Meanwhile, the festival’s Juried Visual Art Exhibition (at the Trust Arts Education Center) will be selected not by a group, as in recent years, but by a single juror: Astria Suparak
, the nationally known curator who formerly ran Carnegie Mellon University's Miller Gallery. Also, for the first time in its more-than-50-year history, the JVAE accepted submisions from outside the region. Corpuz said 500 submissions came in, “from as near as Tarentum and as far away as Teheran.”
Why the new submissions policy? Corpuz said that with the festival already hosting a Pittsburgh Society of Artists show for local talent, it made sense to have an exhibit that cast a wider net. “I think Pittsburgh is really primed to start thinking globally about art-making,” Corpuz said. “Broadening the scope of the show is the evolution of the new Pittsburgh.”