Braddock, Pennsylvania is full of despair. You can feel it when you drive around. Lately the community has been dealt another blow because the hospital there just closed. Unemployment is 15.8% compared to the national average of 9.7%.This was once a thriving mill town but now you see boarded-up storefronts and lots of houses are for sale–cheap. Lawns of these houses are overgrown with huge weeds and many are unoccupied. The dark sky tells this sad story while the crisp light gives hope that things can only get better.
Last week Cohen & Grigsby, P.C., a downtown Pittsburgh law firm, invited a group of the Associated Artists to paint from their deck. Their new offices are on the fifth floor of the CNG Tower. They were great - providing free parking, free lunches, and get this, free canvases! There were about 12 of us that worked throughout the week as attorneys, paralegals and secretaries looked on. To my knowledge this just isn't done. Most outdoor painters are used to being asked to leave rather than being invited for an entire week. The best part was watching each other paint and sharing the camaraderie with other artists. Above is pictured Kevin Kutz, Nancy Deckant, and Kitty Spangler. The painting is one of six I did there. An exhibition, City Views, is planned for early October in the firm's lobby.
Full time artist living in Pittsburgh, PA. I've been a gravedigger, chicken catcher, landscaper, graphic designer, museum art installer, college instructor, and now, finally, I'm painting everyday, which is what I've been trying to do all along.