This city owes its resilience to the spirit and creative energy of the people who have made Pittsburgh their home, built communities here, and contributed to our shared future. At this critical time in our nation’s history, when many immigrants and refugees don’t feel welcome in this country, The Sprout Fund is launching Belonging, a new community art project to positively affirm the notion that we all belong.
In partnership with the Office of Mayor Bill Peduto and fourteen community partners, today we’re inviting residents of all ages in Allegheny County to submit original works of art that express the concept of “belonging.”
Through a public voting period and art jurying process, one winning design will be reproduced as posters and yard signs to be distributed free of charge throughout Pittsburgh and Allegheny County. The creator of the winning design will receive an honorarium of $3,000.
Fifteen additional submitted designs will be included on a “collection of community voices” poster that will also be available for free to the public. The artists of these designs will each receive an honorarium of $100. Printed reproductions of the selected designs will be available starting June 21 at the World Refugee Day Celebration in Market Square in downtown Pittsburgh and at distribution points at locations to be announced.
The deadline for submissions is Thursday, May 4 at 7:00 PM. All persons living in Allegheny County are eligible to participate. While the highest artistic merit is desired—professionals, amateurs, and youth are encouraged to apply, regardless of experience.
“Belonging” brings together several local organizations who value inclusivity and diversity, are committed to unity, and support Pittsburgh’s immigrant and refugee communities. These partner organizations will help promote the project to their constituencies and act as distribution hubs for yard signs and posters once they are printed. Additionally, some groups will host free community art and cultural events across the Pittsburgh metropolitan area in support of the project.
Community partners for this program include: 1Hood, AIU Latino Family Center, Bhutanese Community Association of Pittsburgh, Casa San Jose, Change Agency, City of Asylum, Greater Pittsburgh Literacy Council, Hello Neighbor, Northern Area Multi-Service Center Refugee Resettlement, South Hills Interfaith Movement, Squirrel Hill Urban Coalition, United Somali Bantu, Welcoming Pittsburgh, and World Affairs Council of Pittsburgh.
Building upon the concept and successes of The Sprout Fund’s 100 Days of US initiative, this public art project will empower artists and residents to advance their vision of a community that is one of the most welcoming and culturally vibrant cities in America.
Support for Belonging is provided in part by The Sprout Fund, The Heinz Endowments, Opportunity Fund, and the Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh. Individuals can also pledge support for Belonging and for local organizations working to support immigrants and refugees through a crowdfunding campaign at crowdrise.com/belonging.
Learn more at belonging.art.