gagi ledPenn Avenue Arts District

May 1
6 – 10 p.m.

Need a Spring reboot? This weekend, the best way to celebrate the season of renewal and transformation is at the Geek Art/Green Innovator’s Festival.

Dubbed GA/GI, the eclectic festival is teaming up with Unblurred to host free events, activities and entertainment spanning Friendship and Garfield. Marking six years in the Burgh, the first-of-its-kind homegrown festival provides a forum for people and places working on cutting-edge projects to share them with the general public and test out new ideas.

From 4800 to 5500 Penn Ave., galleries, retailers, businesses, community organizations, restaurants and cafes, university groups and others will serve up a super-sized edition of the district’s monthly gallery crawl with a special emphasis on technology, sustainability, community, music, art and fashion.

Ready to geek out and go green?

Always a highlight is the signature GAGI Fashion Show, which takes place at the Pittsburgh Glass Center—the festival’s HQ for 2015. Exploring the theme of “reinvention,” the event will also feature glass blowing demos, spoken word performance by Speaklife Storytellers and music by Tracksploitation. While there, attendees can also experience ABC at PGC, featuring colorful LED letters that can be touched and re-arranged to form thousands of combinations.

Climate & Urban Systems Partnership

New this year will be an interactive installation on view at Edge studio developed by green artists from Carnegie Mellon’s Climate & Urban Systems Partnership (CUSP). Visitors will enter a “climate playground” to play interactive games and learn inspiring strategies for adapting to climate change.

Have a green thumb? The Garfield Community Action Team, EastField Co-Operative Garden and Healcrest Urban Farms will be on hand to talk to festival-goers about agriculture, local foods and the many benefits of urban outdoor gardening.

ModernFormations Gallery will host an exhibition opening for Ross Hardy’s Black Room/Color Room, which highlights the beauty and complexity of iron oxide. Visitors will explore the waste that is often left behind by aging steel mills, crumbling coke furnaces and fading industry via works that feature the intense colors, shapes and textures of rust.

Pick up a terrarium kit at neighborhood newcomer, the Robin’s Nest boutique, and discover a wondrous display of locally-made miniatures at the Irma Freeman Center for the Imagination.

At Assemble, view the new mixed media installation, Amerikkka: A Post Racial Society, and learn about upcoming events and classes for neighborhood youth. Pop into Most Wanted Fine Art to celebrate Mother’s Day with a Latino flavor. Check out the new exhibition, Projeto Madre Latina, which showcases the photography of Lila Rodrigues. The opening will feature musical performances by Grand Snafu and Econoclast, and Rock Bottom brews.

Also not-to-miss is the season opener of the Garfield Night Market located at the corner Penn Ave. and Pacific St.

For regular updates, check the GA/GI Festival website.

Jennifer BaronArts & Entertainment / Jobs Editor

Jennifer has worked at the Mattress Factory, Brooklyn Museum of Art and Dahesh Museum of Art and is co-author of Pittsburgh Signs Project: 250 Signs of Western Pennsylvania. She also is co-coordinator...