Polish Hill Arts Festival vendor preview #1

We’ve got a full roster of artists and craft vendors for the Polish Hill Arts Festival, and over the next couple of weeks we’re going to introduce you to all of them.  Above is a necklace by Lisa Parker of On the Rocks, who makes wonderful silver jewelry.  Lisa’s been vending at the festival since it started in 2008.  Here’s another piece of her work:

Another returning vendor is ceramisist Garick Tai-Lee.  His work includes everyday objects and art;  both practical and beautiful.

Another piece by Garick:

Another returning vendor, Ryan McGowan, has an extremely varied output.  Ryan makes poetic mixed-media objects like this box …

… and he’s also a cartoonist (below).  Oh, and he has a blog where you can see more of his artwork and learn a bit more about him.

Here’s a new vendor we’re really excited about.  She calls herself John the Craftist, and she makes really funny cards and other items that relate to native Pittsburgh culture.

And for the last artist in this preview, we have Andy Scott.  We have a particular place in our hearts for Andy — he designed the arts festival posters in 2011 and 2012, he had a table at the festival where he sold his work and that of friends — and had an art activity.  Plus, his work is great — check out his blog.

Here are the posters Andy did for the 2011 and 2012 arts festival:

What an exciting group of artists and craftspeople!  We’ll show you more in a few days, along with previews of the music, art activities, food, and anything else we can think of!

Vendor applications now available for the Polish Hill Arts Festival

We’re just beginning the planning for the 2013 Polish Hill Arts Festival — and first step is to find the artists and craftspeople who are one of the most important parts of the festival.  We try to put together an artists market that represents a varied mix of work and artists. And although many artists and creative people from Polish Hill participate in the festival, it isn’t a requirement.

The festival will take place on Sunday, July 21 from 12:00 to 9:00 p.m.  Here is the application and information sheet. Please call us at 412.681.1950, or email if you have any other questions.

Check out the festival information page for more details and photos from previous years.

(Above:  artist Joseph Holtz has been showing at the festival since it first began in 2008.  Photo by Leslie Clague for the PHCA)

Anonymous art beautifies a less-travelled pathway

There’s a very subtle but lovely new piece of public art in Polish Hill.  The metal silhouette of a bird in flight was recently placed along one of our less-travelled, but perfectly accessible (and safe) byways.  Can you guess where it might be?  Here’s a hint:  you have to be on foot, and you can’t see it from any street.

Many thanks to the unknown artist who made such a nice piece and put it in such a perfect location.  This is such a great way to see art:  to happen upon it in a setting where it really fits, and adds something wonderful to the place.  Who needs large, “look at me!” murals when there are so many other creative ways to bring art into the public space?

Some video from the arts festival

We’ve been going through the pictures from the arts festival, and an online search has turned up a few videos.  The video above, of Lungs Face Feet, is by Mark Knobil.

This one of Timbeleeza is very short:

And this one of Lungs Face Feet is very long:

If anyone has video from any of the other great acts that performed at the festival, please let us know!

Photos from the Polish Hill Arts Festival

The fifth annual Polish Hill Arts Festival was a great day.  What can we say?  We’re still tired, so we’ll let the photos do the talking.  More photos, captions, and details to be added tomorrow…wanted to get this up today.

Artist Andy Scott (left, in red cap) also designed the festival poster.

Artist Joseph Holtz has shown at the festival every year.  We love our returning vendors!

The tiki stand — how could anyone say no to frozen cheesecake on a stick?

Elizabeth Fisch’s poetry project attracted all ages.  Here, Ilona Auth, niece Coco and a friend try their hand at poetry.

Uncao Capoeira Pittsburh performed during Timbeleeza’s set.

Timbeleeza circled the festival site during their performance.  See a short video from their set.

The Frantic Heart of It, a Polish Hill-based band, played an energetic set of pop-punk.

Three local authors read from their books in the back room at Gooski’s. (Photo by Karen Lillis)

Jayke Orvis and the Broken Band capped off the night with the dark heart of country.

It was a lot of fun, and we were grateful that the heatwave broke  in time to give us a beautiful, tolerably  hot day. Many thanks go out to the dozens of participants who helped make it happen:

Artists and craftspeople
Charlie Alessi, Sarah Jo Antonucci, Jason Barkley, Christian Breitkreutz, Laurel Coniglio, Maura Doern Danko, Trilodeon Evolutionary Arts (Niffer Desmond), Betty Machete (April Diehl, Michelle DiPasquale), Myra Falisz, Monster Shoppe (Malcolm Gittins), Kevin Graham, Joseph Holtz, Karen Lillis, Randi Morgan, Maggie Negrete and the Monalloh Foundry, On the Rocks (Lisa Parker), Reyghan Pierce, Siren Studios (Lynn Ratkovich, Jamie Miller, Kelly Jane Walker, Monica McElwain), Matthew Rychorcewicz, Little Tired (Andy Scott), Cheryl Sedlock, Phil Seth Designs, Lizzee Solomon, Garick Tai-Lee, Whimsical Wonders (Melissa Vennieri-McCabe), and Bobbi Williams.

Food vendors
The Immaculate Heart of Mary Church and their volunteers, led by Mark Dobies; Laura Gershman (with Andy and Tessa), Caleb Gamble (and friends), Todd and Franktuary, Cindy Nicolacco and her Tiki Hut treats, Joy and Naomi of Pig Hill Brewing, David Harris, and the LifesWork Ben and Jerry’s cart (who donate 50% of their proceeds back to us, for next year’s festival).

Art activities
Elizabeth Bashur and Lindsay of Little House, Big Art, Andy Scott and friends, Carnegie Library, and Elizabeth Fisch, with her poetry collecting project.

Zout, Kayla Slicker (The Committee for Getting Attention), Steve Pellegrino and the Big Concept Band, Bob Lampenfield and the fine gentlemen of Truth and Rites, Timbeleeza and Uncao Capoiera Pittsburgh, Doug Weaver and The Frantic Heart of It, Lungs Face Feet, Jayke Orvis and the Broken Band.

Lori Jakiela, Dave  Newman, Bob Pajich, and Karen Lillis (for pulling it together.)

Local businesses
Sarney’s (which opens on Sunday just for this event), Urban Gypsy (a touch of class and refinement  to a funky festival), Gooski’s, (with special thanks to Marcus for letting us have the readings in the back room on a very busy day); and Lili Coffee* Shop, Mind Cure Records and Copacetic Comics for being another cool place to go, and so supportive of the festival.

Neighborhood and PHCA volunteers
Terry Doloughty, John (Ducky) McClure, Laura Zurowski, Leigh Kish, Doug Ramsey, Brian Seklecki, Catherine McConnell, Mark Knobil, Josiah Parkinson, Valerie Testa, Erica Moulinier, Tom Ogden, Janice Heagy.  Also thanks to the two deputies from the Allegheny County Sheriff’s Office who volunteered to do security for the festival.

And, of course, thanks to all the visitors who came out.  All of you together are what make this such a great festival.

(Photos by Leslie Clague for the PHCA, except the photo of the Gooskis reading, by Karen Lillis)

The Polish Hill Arts Festival is tomorrow!

Polish Hill is buzzing with activity!  Next door, the church festival is underway; it goes until 11:00 p.m.

And here at the PHCA we’re getting ready for the arts festival, which starts at noon tomorrow.  We’re keeping a nervous eye on the weather — it looks like Sunday will be cooler than today (not that you can call upper 80’s cool!).  There might be some rain, but nothing we can’t handle — pretty much everything is under a tent.

At the moment it’s hard to believe that at this time tomorrow, the street will be filled with vendors selling art, crafts, and food, and art activities.  And of course, there’s live music all day, with a great lineup of bands.  For more information on the festival and to see the performance schedule, check out the arts fest information page.  We hope that you will join us tomorrow!

(2012 Polish Hill Arts Festival poster design by Andy Scott.  Click here to check out some more of his artwork)

Arts festival preview: What Work Is: three Pittsburgh write at Gooski's, 7:00 -8:00 p.m.

As part of the Polish Hill Arts Festival, which takes place on Sunday, July 8 from 12- 9 pm, three Pittsburgh writers will be in the back room at Gooskis at 7 pm to read from their newest books — all of them about work and the ways people struggle to get by. Dave Newman will pull the curtain on university life when he reads from his new novel, Raymond Carver Will Not Raise Our Children (Writers Tribe Books, 2012) — all about the broken-down world of adjunct instructors trying to make a living at a major Pittsburgh university.

Bob Pajich will offer up old man bars and the blue-collar blues with his steel-toed, open-hearted poems from The Trolleyman (Low Ghost Press, 2012). And Lori Jaikela will read poems from her new collection –Spot the Terrorist! (Turning Point Press, 2012) —  and give a glimpse into the life of a flight attendant (as well as the fundamentals of terrorist-spotting).

Books will be available for purchase and a booksigning will follow the readings. Free and open to the public.  For more information on the reading, e-mail loj@pitt.edu.

And for more information on the festival, check our festival information page.


Factory Direct: the Warhol Museum brings art to (well, near) Polish Hill, starting June 24

Polish Hill has a lot of artists, but not a lot of art shows (although Lili Coffee* has great exhibits, like the one of punk show photographs currently on view).

But there will be a big show right on our northern border.  The Warhol Museum brings it’s Factory Direct: Pittsburgh show to the sixth-floor event/exhibition space at the Guardian Storage building, at 2839 Liberty Avenue.  The show is described as “Art inspired by industry”, and this is how it works:  14 contemporary artists come to Pittsburgh, each hooks up with an individual factory, then each creates a new work of art based on the manufacturer’s materials and processes.  It’s an exhibition that celebrates the region’s workforce and their commitment to industry and innovation.

The exhibit opens on June 24, and runs through September 9.  Admission is free, but donations are welcomed.  Click here for more details about the show.

Still accepting vendor applications for the Polish Hill Arts Festival; also looking for other artist projects and participation

The application period for Polish Hill Arts Festival spaces remains open for artists, craftspeople, and food vendors.  The festival will be on Sunday, July 8 from 12-9 p.m.  The applications for vendor slots are now available here, or you can pick up a copy at the PHCA office.

Vendors of art or crafts can be individuals or a group sharing a table.  Items sold must be artwork or crafts — nothing machine made, mass-produced, or commercial.  The fee is just $30, which includes an 8′ table under a tent.

We are also looking for food vendors, especially those with vegan or vegetarian options.  Our festival is nine hours long and attendees are hungry all day long — vendors should be able to make enough food and staff their booth for the whole day.  Food vendor fees vary according to what kind of setup you have and whether you’re a restaurant or an individual.

This will be the fifth year of the festival and we’re looking forward to putting together another great event.  The festival is always evolving, and we’re also interested in getting other kinds of programming.  We’re also interested in artist projects, which might be a hands-on activity, a large artwork to display, or something else — it just needs to work in a kid-friendly environment.

Check out the festival information page for more details and lots of photos from previous years.  If you’ve got an idea, a question, or would just like to be involved  somehow, call 412.681.1950 or email us.

(Photo from the 2011 arts festival, by Leslie Clague for the PHCA)

Polish Hill Arts Festival date set, vendor application now available

The date for the Polish Hill Arts Festival has been set for  Sunday, July 8.  This will be the fifth year of the festival and we’re looking forward to putting together another great event.  The applications for vendor slots are now available here, or you can pick up a copy at the PHCA office.  Applications are due back to us by May 5, and applicants will be informed by May 31 if their application has been accepted.

The music programming is mostly done by invitation, but anyone who would like to be considered should email us at phcapgh@gmail.com with links to their performances.  We are also looking for artist projects, which might be a hands-on activity, a large artwork to display, or something else — it just needs to work in a kid-friendly environment.

The festival is always evolving, and we’re also interested in getting other kinds of programming.  If you’ve got an idea, or would just like to be involved somehow, call 412.681.1950 or email us.