Fashion parade of garments made from umbrellas by artist Dolo Navas and modeled CAPA students.

Downtown and multiple locations
Through October 9
Various times

In case you missed the opening weekend of Pittsburgh’s newest arts festival, dubbed Re:NEW, not to worry, because you have until October 9 to take it all in. And we highly recommend return visits to experience this evolving, multi-format festival.

Gather by Jacqueline Metheny at 709 Penn Gallery.
Gather by Jacqueline Metheny at 709 Penn Gallery.

With a thoughtfully curated and crafted mix of stand alone events, ongoing exhibitions, live performances, and more, the Re:NEW Festival is putting Pittsburgh on the international map in terms of creative reuse, sustainability and transformation.

Art with a (re)purpose is the guiding thread weaving together more than 80 public programs (most of them free!), 12 venues and some 120 artists and performers—all activating Downtown Pittsburgh venues, traditional and non-traditional spaces and additional hotspots around the city.

What’s up at Re:NEW this week? Here are some not-to-miss highlights:

Wednesday, September 14: Don’t miss the final Rooftop Shindig of summer, when the Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership teams up with Re:NEW to present a free outdoor screening of Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior, live music by The Commonheart, games, handcrafted food, specialty cocktails, beer and a late-summer vibe. It all goes down on the top level of the Theater Square Garage (667 Penn Ave). Doors open at 6 p.m., music starts at 7 p.m., and the movie screens at sundown.

Sebastian Junger
Sebastian Junger. Photo: Tim Hetherington.

Thursday, September 15: Mark your calendar now for a public talk and book signing with award-winning American journalist Sebastian Junger at Carnegie Lecture Hall. The #1 New York Times bestselling author will present a talk on his latest engrossing book, TRIBE On Homecoming and Belonging, which explores “what we can learn from tribal societies about loyalty, belonging, and the eternal human quest for meaning.” Buy tickets.

Thursday, September 15: The Re:NEW film series continues at Downtown’s Harris Theater with a screening and community discussion focused on Sustainability Pioneers, a documentary series “visualizing a bridge from our fossil-fuel based economy to an economy based on renewable energy and sustainable living.” The event will include an introduction by filmmaker and journalist Kirsi Jansa, a screening of four episodes—including a premiere of the newest one—and a public discussion led by Mary Beth Mannarino, a clinical psychologist and associate professor of psychology at Chatham University. Buy tickets.

Courtesy Drap-Art.

Friday, September 16: The place to be for all of the Re:NEW action is 623 Smithfield Street, where the festival will host a free opening reception for its juried group exhibition. Featuring new work by 21 regional artists, the multi-media showcase explores the themes of creative reuse, sustainability and transformation. Friday’s festivities on Smithfield will also include a special edition of the Night Market, featuring art, accessories and home decor all made from upcycled, recycled or reused materials, as well as public, interactive performance art by Ori Alon and The Empowering Clerks Network.

Saturday, September 17: Head back to 623 Smithfield for the 10th anniversary of the one and only Art Olympics led by Pittsburgh artist Tom Sarver. Watch firsthand as teams of resourceful artists compete to make art using objects donated from Goodwill. Also on Saturday, attendees can learn how to repurpose old Steelers t-shirts into a fabric boa, scarf or necklace in time for the season opener during a free workshop (registration is required). Saturday’s events will also feature a special Farmer’s Market in Market Square, as well as related happenings around town at Percolate, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh and Sweetwater Center for the Arts.

Sunday, September 18: Green Arts Tour led by artist and educator Jennifer Saffron of the Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council and co-founder of the Re:NEW Festival. Hop on the festival bus to enjoy a free guided tour of local arts organizations committed to sustainable practices, facilities and operations (register here).

Courtesy Drap-Art.

Ongoing: Anchoring Re: NEW and not to miss is the highly anticipated North American premiere of Barcelona-based Drap-Art—the world’s leading international festival of recycling art. Named for the Catalan word meaning “cleaning rag,” Drap is housed inside Philip Johnson’s iconic, glass-walled PPG Wintergarden Dowtnown. Open to the public through October 9, the free exhibition boasts 80 works by 40 renowned international artists who transform reused materials into provocative and compelling artwork. Drap-Art has landed in the Burgh after being exhibited across multiple continents for the past 15 years. See a Drap-Art slide show here.

View a complete schedule.

Looking for more events? Read our 12 Pittsburgh events not to miss in SeptemberEverything you need to know about Pittsburgh concerts in September and 10 great family adventures in Pittsburgh this September feature stories.

Tom Sarver
Artist Tom Sarver. Photo: Larry Rippel.

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 of Handmade Arcade. Musically, she is in a band called The Garment District and is a founding member of Brooklyn's The Ladybug Transistor.