Three Rivers Arts Fest goes virtual, but "the art is real" | Features | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Three Rivers Arts Fest goes virtual, but "the art is real"

click to enlarge Three Rivers Arts Fest goes virtual, but "the art is real"
CP photo: Lisa Cunningham
The Three Rivers Arts Fest, in pre-pandemic days
For the first time in its 61 years, the Dollar Bank Three Rivers Arts Festival is taking place exclusively online.

The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust announced today that this year's festival, running from June 5-14, will be all-digital and found its website, using the tagline, "The festival is virtual, and the art is real!"

This announcement continues the recent trend of festivals moving online amidst COVID-19 concerns, following Art All Night and Pittsburgh International Jazz Festival, among others.

"Art connects all of us. For the past 60 years, the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust’s multidisciplinary Festival has presented an array of music, dance, theater, literary arts, public art, gallery exhibitions, and more, completely free of charge and open to the public, as well as an Artist Market which provides a platform and exposure for more than 300 artists," reads the press release. "As much as we want to gather 500,000 people to celebrate art in all its forms this June, the uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic has made this physically impossible as we continue to prioritize safety of our city and our people."

For 10 days, The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust hopes to bring arts and community to as many households as possible, continuing to spread the festival's legacy of celebrating music, art, creative activity, food, visual art, public art, and more, together. The programs will be hosted through and will be accessible on any device.

Programming for this year's digital TRAF includes the artist market; digital stages; Transverse: Visual Art Exhibition; Compass Roses: Maps by Artists; Anthropology of Motherhood: Culture of Care; Public Art in the Cultural District; creative activities; and more.

"We are honored to be shining a brilliant light on all of the artists and community partners who will be participating in this first-ever digital TRAF," says Sarah Aziz, director of festival management for the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust. "Our vision for this Festival is to bring art-inspired experiences for everyone in the community, and beyond, to journey with us and walk through this redefined footprint throughout the 10 days and together find and share many special moments and treasures of inspiration.

"The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust extends its profound thanks to its Title Sponsor Dollar Bank and Supporting Sponsor Giant Eagle for their stalwart and generous support in the face of unprecedented circumstances. And to our many other generous and enthusiastic contributors, we look forward to providing you with many amazing opportunities as we move to a digital space in 2020 and plan for our on-site return in 2021. And, of course, deepest thanks to all the essential workers helping to keep us safe and healthy these past few months. "

Stay tuned to and The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust's social media pages for updates and more information.