Funded Projects from 2010

“10,000” (2010)
Jesse Best & Brian Holderman, 2010 Community Murals mural

The 2010 Sprout Public Art project in Wilkinsburg marked the first time that a community came back to Sprout and asked to expand upon a previously received mural project. After careful consideration, it was decided to contact Brian Holderman, the original artist, would reinvent his previous work in the community. Because the wall stands adjacent to a parklet, and also because of the community’s interest in environmental issues, a design that complimented its pastoral surroundings seemed a logical choice. With this in mind, Holderman used his sophisticated sense of color to integrate the piece with its surroundings, rather than clash with the area around it. His design depicts a forest scene in a classic, almost animated style, and his clever use foreground, middle-ground, and background draw the viewer into the scene itself.

“America’s Home Town” (2010)
Diane Adams, 2010 Community Murals mural

Situated on the outskirts of the greater Pittsburgh area, Oakdale is a quaint, small, almost rural town where people know each other and share much common history. These traditions are celebrated in the Sprout 2010 mural designed by artist Diane Adams. Adams chose to focus on community celebrations and activities like parades and youth baseball, along with other historical elements from the area’s past. A fireman figure stands amongst the scene, paying tribute to the service of local heroes. Two oak trees, the iconic symbol of the community, frame the composition and tie of these elements together. The mural highlights the close-knit community and quiet beauty—complete with white picket fences—that make Oakdale residents think of their neighborhood as “America’s hometown.”

Art Out of the Box
$7,500, 2010 Seed Award project support

Art Out of the Box was a mobile, all inclusive artist studio space where artists created original pieces of visual art within one-week residencies. The residencies took place outdoors in five different Pittsburgh neighborhoods-Friendship, Lawrenceville, Polish Hill, the South Side, and the North Side-throughout the summer months. A public art exhibit in conjunction with the Downtown Gallery Crawl displayed the final works and screened a documentary recording the process of the public art project.

Auberle’s Outdoor Classroom
$5,000, 2010 Spring project support

Auberle’s Outdoor Classroom, a project of Auberle Human Services Agency, was a non-traditional educational facility for students, families, and community members to learn about biodiversity and the environment through hands-on, experiential projects in an outdoor, “amphitheater” setting. Built by Auberle youth under the direction of professionals from Fischer Landscaping, even the construction of the Outdoor Classroom acted as a learning experience as youth worked on the facility’s organic garden, compost pile, rainwater barrels, and birdhouses. The classroom served the campus of Auberle in McKeesport and the surrounding neighborhood, acting as a centerpiece of McKeesport’s community-building and education initiatives.

The Bigger Picture
$3,700 » Silver Eye Center for Photography, 2010 Seed Award project support

The Bigger Picture, a project of Silver Eye Center for Photography, provided Pittsburgh artists with the knowledge, training, and resources needed to take their professional careers and creative visions to the next level. The project offered monthly workshops organized around three tracks-acquiring new business and communication skills, optimizing digital technologies, and stretching creativity and vision-to help visual artists attain their creative and entrepreneurial goals. Classes were offered at introductory, intermediate, and advanced levels at The Silver Eye Center for Photography in the South Side and elsewhere, including Pittsburgh Filmmakers, Robert Morris University, and the 91.3 WYEP-FM Community Education Center.

BioShelter and Food Systems Center
$20,000, 2010 Spring project support

BioShelter and Food Systems Center, a project of the Garfield Community Farm, was a permanent greenhouse structure designed to extend the growing season located on the farm located in Pittsburgh’s Garfield neighborhood and to expand educational offerings at nearby Fort Pitt Elementary School. Outfitted with passive solar technology and permaculture design, the facility allowed a larger window of opportunity for students to experience the farm and learn about health and nutrition, biodiversity, ecology and gardening as it extended the growing season deeper into the school year while also allowing the farm itself to grow more diverse foods that required longer growing seasons.

Borland Green Ecological Garden
$5,000, 2010 Spring project support

Borland Green Ecological Garden, a project of Pittsburgh Permaculture, implemented a permaculture garden on vacant land in Pittsburgh’s East Liberty neighborhood to restore a host of native plant species cultivated along permaculture design standards and provide a wildlife habitat, access to native edibles, and offer ongoing community programming.

Building a Better Robot: Ten Years of Roboto
$8,830 » Mr. Roboto Project, 2010 Seed Award project support

Building a Better Robot: Ten Years of Roboto, a project of Mr. Roboto Project, was a retrospective look at the Mr. Roboto Project, a cooperatively run performance venue and community space in Wilkinsburg. In ten years, the space hosted over 1,500 events; served as a hub for the Pittsburgh DIY punk, hardcore, and indie rock communities; and provided incubator space to other organizations such as Free Ride! and The Big Idea. Roboto shut down its original location on Wood Street shortly after its ten-year anniversary in preparation to move to a new space. This book looked back at Roboto’s first ten years in words and pictures, analyzing the successes and failures, and providing inspiration and insight to a new generation of activists and artists looking to create their own spaces.

Casino Liberty
$1,550 » Pittsburgh PACT, 2010 Seed Award project support

Casino Liberty, a project of Pittsburgh Public Action Communitarian Theatre (PACT), presented its debut production, Casino Liberty. Created collaboratively by company members and incorporating input from local residents, this performance piece explored issues relevant to Pittsburgh’s East End through casino-related concepts. The work posed questions about how each life is influenced by randomness and chance, risk and reward, and forces both visible and unseen.

$4,000 » Ground Collective, 2010 Seed Award project support

Catapult, a project of Ground Collective, created a space where freelancers, consultants, and other independent workers could gain from the social engagement and organic collaboration of working in a large corporation. By adding workplace amenities such as a print and copy room, conference space, and reliable Internet access, Grind Pittsburgh allowed independent workers to share resources, get instant feedback on work, and become more productive through working in a social environment.

Character Therapy
$13,070, 2010 Spark project support

Character Therapy, a project of Interbots, was a program at the Autism Center of Pittsburgh that used Popchilla robot devices to engage children living with Autism Spectrum Disorders in emotional and communication therapy.

Chimney Swift Towers
$5,000, 2010 Spring project support

Chimney Swift Towers, a project of The Audubon Society of Western PA, constructed four new artificial chimney habitats for Chimney Swifts, neotropical migrant birds, along riverfront trails to increase habitat options for Swifts in the Pittsburgh area.

Community Tree Nursery
$20,000, 2010 Spring project support

Community Tree Nursery, a project of Tree Pittsburgh, created a tree nursery to support their ongoing planting and public education efforts. The nursery provided a more diverse tree stock for local reforestation and ecosystem restoration efforts, while increasing the public’s understanding of urban forestry and the community’s stewardship of urban trees.

Curious Creatures
$9,500, 2010 Spark project support

Curious Creatures, a project of Art Energy Design, was a collection of kinetic, wind, and solar powered objects that each demonstrated the fundamentals of mechanical motion and sustainable energy creation. Friendly characters, made from recycled materials, resembled familiar insects, reptiles, and mammals and were designed for hands-on discovery learning.

Evenings in Quarantine: The Zombie Opera
$4,000, 2010 Seed Award project support

Evenings in Quarantine: The Zombie Opera was a hybrid theatrical stage and film production by artistic directors Bonnie Bogovich and Elizabeth Rishel. A full-length video projection served as the moving, interactive backdrop for a horror opera that highlighted some of Pittsburgh’s most iconic locations and celebrated the keystone creature of Pittsburgh’s cultural heritage, the zombie. The story followed three college friends as they navigated their way through the infected streets of Pittsburgh and took stock of their priorities, as they grappled with the living dead and with each other.

Free4All Music Festival
$6,000 » Project 53 Musician Resource Center, 2010 Seed Award project support

Free4All Music Festival, a project of Project 53 Musician Resource Center, was a weekend-long music performance and workshop festival in Polish Hill. The festival coincided with Polish Hill’s Art What You Got festival and featured local and national bands, as well as interactive, family friendly performers.

Green Roofs for Bus Shelters
$20,000, 2010 Spring project support

Green Roofs for Bus Shelters, a project of East Liberty Development, Inc., introduced biodiverse flora and fauna into an urban environment through the creation of a public transit bus shelter that incorporated a living green roof on Penn Ave in the East Liberty business district.

Growing Biodiversity: A school-yard transformation
$5,000, 2010 Spring project support

Growing Biodiversity: A school-yard transformation, a project of Nine Mile Run Watershed Association, created a rain garden on the grounds of the Word of God School in Swissvale that used stormwater runoff to irrigate native plant communities established in the garden.

Heritage Seed Bank and Nursery
$20,000, 2010 Spring project support

Heritage Seed Bank and Nursery, a project of Blackberry Meadows Farm, was an initiative to maintain a collection of seeds that are rare or “endangered”, are native to the region, and have a role in the region’s history or culture. Participants at the nursery learned about seed saving and its role in communities throughout history, while also sustaining the region’s native heritage and heirloom plants for future generations. Blackberry Meadows Farm also worked to stock public spaces and area gardens with these native plants to raise greater public awareness about the importance of protecting horticultural heritage.

HOMEWOOD Artist Residency
$10,000 » The Andy Warhol Museum, 2010 Seed Award project support

HOMEWOOD Artist Residency, a project of The Andy Warhol Museum, invited national and international contemporary artists who represented the diversity of Homewood to take residence in rehabilitated houses and split the homes into living and studio spaces. Artists created projects that reflected the overarching history and culture of Homewood, including a large-scale installation in the Greater Pittsburgh Coliseum that blended the memories and voices of Homewood’s residents into a physical work of art. The project supported artists of color, brought diversity to the contemporary arts community in Pittsburgh, and engaged a community with limited access to the visual arts.

Huellas Latinas Concert Series
$4,000, 2010 Seed Award project support

Huellas Latinas Concert Series presented a sequence of five concerts focusing on Spanish and Latin American classical and folkloric music. With each concert dedicated to celebrating culturally important dates and events in Latin American and Spanish history, the series united the community and promoted Hispanic culture through music.

Isabelle’s Playground
$50,000, 2010 Spark project support

Isabelle’s Playground, a project of Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh, was a unique inpatient playground that used a therapeutic sensory theater to stimulate visual, auditory, and tactile senses and provide gross-motor play opportunities for children during their hospital stay.

Knotweed Knockout
$5,000, 2010 Spring project support

Knotweed Knockout, a project of Polish Hill Civic Association, remediated one-acre of knotweed-infested city-owned land in the Polish Hill neighborhood of Pittsburgh using non-toxic cinnamon oil to kill the exposed knotweed plants and hinder their recurrence.

Living Room Chamber Music Project
$5,700, 2010 Seed Award project support

Living Room Chamber Music Project produced concerts in private homes in order to acquaint new audiences with the power of live music. Set in relaxed, intimate environments, the concerts presented high-level performances and undercut traditional stereotypes of classical music.

Love Your Watershed Day
$4,850 » Nine Mile Run Watershed Association, 2010 Seed Award project support

Love Your Watershed Day, a project of Nine Mile Run Watershed Association, advocated for the restoration and protection of the Watershed and Watershed communities. The project engaged citizens in an underserved, low-income section of Pittsburgh, celebrating work that had already been done and introducing progressive new ideas. The event featured free food, music, and live art installations and provided ecological information from local businesses.

Monessen Community Garden Project
$5,000, 2010 Spring project support

Monessen Community Garden Project, a project of Private Industry Council of Westmoreland County, conducted a weeklong biodiversity camp for youth to learn about biodiversity in agriculture, rainwater collection, composting, and gardening.

Moraine Native Plant Restoration Area
$5,000, 2010 Spring project support

Moraine Native Plant Restoration Area, a project of 3MJC, established a plant restoration area on a 1¼ acre site in the south shore section of Moraine State Park to educate visitors about the relationship between native and invasive species and ecological health.

Native Appalachian Garden
$20,000, 2010 Spring project support

Native Appalachian Garden, a project of Pittsburgh Botanic Garden, built a nursery that cultivated woodland species of the Appalachian Plateau and Coves. Volunteer master gardeners worked together with horticulture students from Bidwell Training Center to inventory a collection of sprouts and nurture new specimens from seedlings to maturity.

“Open Heaven Open Sky” (2010)
Gabe Felice, 2010 Community Murals mural

Uptown is a neighborhood currently undergoing a positive transformation, and one of the forces behind this change is the neighborhood’s small but vibrant arts community. With a sophisticated taste in art, members of the Uptown community were open to the idea of abstract and non-literal representation. The personal work of artist Gabe Felice particularly resonated with the community. Gabe’s energetic use of color and unique layering process were ones that the people of Uptown admired and thought would be a lively work of public art for an audience heavily comprised of highway motorists quickly passing by. Since Gabe starting painting, a community garden has also sprung up in the immediate vicinity of the wall, adding to the overall impact of the project.

$7,500, 2010 Spark project support

Papermation, a project of The Schmutz Company, hosted stop motion animation workshops for children ages 3-8 at community venues throughout Pittsburgh.

Peebles Square Transitional Land Plan
$5,000, 2010 Spring project support

Peebles Square Transitional Land Plan, a project of ACTION-Housing, Inc., established a native wildflower garden on vacant land in Wilkinsburg to increase the biodiversity of local flora and fauna and establish protocol for responsible development and standards for the stewardship of vacant urban land.

Pittsburgh Gigapanorama
$4,000 » High Point Park Investigation, CMU STUDIO for Creative Inquiry, 2010 Seed Award project support

Pittsburgh Gigapanorama, a project of High Point Park Investigation and Carnegie Mellon University’s STUDIO for Creative Inquiry, was an interactive, 360-degree portrait of southwestern Pennsylvania as seen from the roof of the U. S. Steel Tower. Assembled from more than 4,000 individual pictures taken on one chilly October morning, this photograph contained 31.3 gigabytes (10.5 gigapixels) of information, ranking it among the largest digital images ever created at that time. If displayed in full size, the photo would be 50 feet high by 285 feet long. A downsized banner, measuring 48 inches high by 23 feet long, was developed and smaller prints were also made available.

PIX: The Pittsburgh Indy Comics Expo
$940, 2010 Grand Ideas project support

PIX: The Pittsburgh Indy Comics Expo was Pittsburgh’s first-ever exposition devoted solely to creator-owned, self-published, small press, and handmade comics. PIX was held at a repurposed storage facility in the Strip District and was free and the open to the public. The event highlighted a flourishing community of comic artists and cartoonists in Pittsburgh and presented work from across the country, and around the world. PIX united the region’s comic artists to create an awareness within the group of its strength and numbers and to encourage its future artistic growth.

Pollinator Restoration and Education Program
$5,000, 2010 Spring project support

Pollinator Restoration and Education Program, a project of The Outdoor Classroom, created new native plant gardens and restored existing ones in Upper St. Clair Township that provide food for pollinators and increase plant, insect, and animal biodiversity.

Promoting Biodiversity in the Peters Creek Watershed
$5,000, 2010 Spring project support

Promoting Biodiversity in the Peters Creek Watershed, a project of Peters Creek Watershed Association, raised awareness and understanding of biodiversity in communities in southern Allegheny and northern Washington Counties through public festivals, geocaching hikes, and community volunteer project activities.

Public Record
$6,100, 2010 Seed Award project support

Public Record was a multimedia documentary poetry project that offered a unique glimpse into the lives of our city’s forebears. It was a book of poems based on text sampled from 19th-century Pittsburgh crime reports-poems about people whose only appearance in the historical record is this single act of transgression. The project included a set of audio recordings of those poems by local artists and used technology to allow audience members to experience those poems, via mobile phone, in the locations at which the events transpired. Created by artist and writer Justin Hopper as an Old and New Media Artist-in-Residence with technology company Deeplocal and underground publishers Encyclopedia Destructica, Public Record took its audiences on a tour of the city, revealing Pittsburgh’s past as the poetic layers upon which we build our future.

$900, 2010 Grand Ideas project support

QTPi(e), a project by Quelcy T. Kogel, was an artistic, interactive celebration of math, food and community on Pi Day, March 14th, 2010. For the project, Kogel delivered 31 pies via bicycle to homes in Pittsburgh that included mathematical constant pi (3.14) in their address. The pie packaging included hand-printed maps that compared conventional and local pie ingredients and, of course, referenced pi. The packages were photographed at their delivery locations for a gallery show that displayed the photos, maps, and pie samples alongside information about local dining. The project later partnered with the former Waffle Shop in East Liberty and Sprout’s own Hothouse to share more with the public about delicious, locally-sourced food.

$50,000, 2010 Spark project support

ReefBot, a project of Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium, was a remote controlled submersible robot with on-board fish recognition technology that swam in the PPG Aquarium’s Ocean Tank. Interactive controls and multimedia display allowed children to navigate the robot, find, record, and identify marine life in a coral reef habitat.

Robot Algebra Project
$15,000, 2010 Spark project support

Robot Algebra Project, a project of Girl Scouts of Southwestern PA, blended technology, dancing, music, and pre-algebra concepts through Lego Robot programming to engage girls’ interests and excitement in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) subject areas.

Rootz of Farming Events
$4,000 » Healcrest Urban Farms, 2010 Seed Award project support

Rootz of Farming Events, a project of Healcrest Urban Farms, was a pair of Reggae performances at Healcrest Urban Farms that celebrated urban farming and local food. The performances upheld the ideals of rootz cultures, defined by spiritual and cultural emphases on reggae music, fresh foods, and a healthy environment. The events kicked off and closed the Pittsburgh growing seasons and drew reggae lovers from all over the city.

Shaler Area Green Initiative
$5,000, 2010 Spring project support

Shaler Area Green Initiative, a project of Shaler Area High School, constructed an educational garden using native plants and trees for use as a functional outdoor classroom. Using innovative sustainable growing methods like aquaponic fertilization, the garden and accompanying greenhouse cultivated native plants in a setting where students could learn about life and earth sciences, sustainability, and ecological stewardship.

Shelby Montgomery Community Garden
$5,000, 2010 Spring project support

Shelby Montgomery Community Garden, a project of Manchester Beautification Committee, constructed a community garden in a vacant lot in the neighborhood of Manchester on Pittsburgh’s Northside. In addition to restoring a blighted area of the neighborhood, the garden was cultivated with native plants and other selected species and included training and educational programs for neighborhood youth.

The Sky is the Limit
$5,600, 2010 Seed Award project support

The Sky is the Limit enlisted a skywriter to write messages taken from city advisements in the sky over downtown Pittsburgh. Loosed from their paper signs and billboards, common phrases like “Space Available” evoked open-ended poetic meanings and suggested the promise of new opportunities. The expressions were reproduced to fill ad space in the Pittsburgh City Paper, to perplex readers and to point to the changing nature of the newspaper industry. In collaboration with Pittsburgh Filmmakers, the project was fully documented in photos and video. Large photographic prints of the skywriting were then installed in storefront windows, effectively returning the transformed language to its original context.

Southmoreland Middle School Wetlands Project
$5,000, 2010 Spring project support

Southmoreland Middle School Wetlands Project, a project of Jacobs Creek Watershed Association, enhanced biodiversity in a wetland located in Scottdale Borough by increasing the number and variety of wetland flora to stabilize an area that received significant storm water runoff from multiple sources.

The Spoken Word Archive
$3,700, 2010 Seed Award project support

The Spoken Word Archive collected every word, both public and private, uttered by a diverse series of anonymous individuals across Pittsburgh. The archive allowed the public to hear, for the first time, words spoken at exactly the same moment by people usually separated by geography and circumstance. The accidental collision of words formed a unique documentary of the city. The transcripts were posted on a dedicated website and published as a series of books that were loaned to the public through the Carnegie Libraries and presented in local museums. The texts were modified into scripts for a performance series and were exhibited at the Pittsburgh Center for the Arts.

“The Strip Mural” (2010)
Carley Parrish & Shannon Pultz, 2010 Community Murals mural

Neighbors in the Strip, a community group that Sprout has often partnered with in the past, brought an enormous wall centrally located in the heart of the Strip’s business shopping district to the Public Art Program’s 2010 season. The design prepared by artists Carley Parrish and Shannon Pultz pays homage to artist Romare Bearden’s collage style, and captures the energy, history, and vitality of one of Pittsburgh’s oldest, most classic neighborhoods. The viewer can almost hear the sounds and smell the smells of the Strip on a Saturday morning when looking at this image. A number of the Strip District’s recognizable figures also appear in the mural, including Joe Hermanowski, owner of the wall and a popular retailer of Pittsburgh merchandise—including the iconic Terrible Towel—and Jules Troiani, a well-known Strip District entrepreneur.

Take a Hike: Backyard Biodiversity
$20,000, 2010 Spring project support

Take a Hike: Backyard Biodiversity, a project of Carnegie Science Center, developed a traveling assembly presentation to lead elementary school children on an exploration of Earth’s biomes. Students learned how to classify plants and animals, examine water quality, collect and organize data in field guides, and note change over time due to human impact.

Tanoma AMD Wetlands Environmental Education
$5,000, 2010 Spring project support

Tanoma AMD Wetlands Environmental Education, a project of Evergreen Conservancy, delivered educational programming at the Tanoma Abandoned Mine Drainage Wetlands site near Indiana, PA. The programming covered environmental remediation, alternative energy production, and local natural resource conservation efforts.

Transformazium 15104 Communication Network
$5,000 » Transformazium, 2010 Seed Award project support

Transformazium 15104 Communication Network, a project of Transformazium, connected residents of Braddock with local organizations, and organizations with each other, to encourage and support information and service sharing and collaboratively strengthen the neighborhood. Aboard Transformazium’s Vehicle for Communication, Neighborhood Conversation Starters traveled regular and occasionally spontaneous routes through Braddock, delivering information, publications, and resources about local issues and events.

VIA Music & New Media Festival
$9,900, 2010 Seed Award project support

VIA Music & New Media Festival was a year-round event series and week-long Music & New Media Festival showcasing local and international audio and visual artists.

Walks in the Park with Robotic Creatures
$2,500, 2010 Spark project support

Walks in the Park with Robotic Creatures, a project of Ian Ingram, led children on nature walks where they discovered small robots that mimic animal and plant behaviors.

White Light
$15,000, 2010 Spark project support

White Light, a project of Amanda Long, was a touring video sculpture composed of red, green and blue animations. As children interacted with it, the projections formed optical patterns of additive color mixing and other properties of light.

“Windows to the Future…” (2010)
Berry Breene, 2010 Community Murals mural

As the only borough to be located in both Allegheny and Westmoreland counties, the Trafford community is unique and rich in history. Founded over a hundred years ago by the Westinghouse Corporation, it served as one of the nation’s oldest planned communities, where many Westinghouse employees resided. The design composed by artist Berry Breene reflects several key elements of Trafford’s past and present. While the train represents the many engineering developments of the Westinghouse Corporation, the rolling hills and brick buildings in the design evoke the natural beauty of the area and its classic small town business district. Additionally, the fisherman corresponds with the BY Park, a frequently used local asset that serves as the location for much of the community’s recreational activity.

$13,890, 2010 Spark project support

ZooBeats, a project of WYEP 91.3FM, enabled children to record, play, and loop sounds to compose music. Using this simple, open-ended tool, WYEP partnered with music educators and childcare centers to introduce children to the basics of music.