NEXT Up: Heather McElwee

HeatherPGC_750

Photo by Nathan J Shaulis.

Heather McElwee is executive director of the Pittsburgh Glass Center, where she has worked since 2001, overseeing educational programming, exhibitions, fundraising and strategic direction for the organization. Her own artwork is an investigation of the relationship of vessel to architecture and has been shown in galleries across the country.

Monday, May 11

I have to get up bright and early to meet up with the group from Leadership Pittsburgh (LP). I am in the class of LPXXXI and we are all headed to Harrisburg to spend Monday and Tuesday at the Capital meeting with legislators.

Monday night my LP learning group will meet up for dinner at The Fire House Restaurant to talk about our project with Robert Morris University (RMU). We are bringing over 30 kids from the area to RMU to learn about their amazing 3-D printing capabilities.

I am really sad that I will be missing the opening of the East Liberty Farmers Market. It is a regular Monday visit during the summer.

Tuesday, May 12

Hopefully I will be able to get up early and sneak in a run by the river before heading back into legislative sessions for the rest of the day. When I get home around 6 p.m. I will probably try to convince my husband Chris to go out to dinner at our favorite new place in East Liberty, The Twisted Frenchman. It just opened last week. The food is amazing and the chef Andrew Garbarino is incredibly talented.

Wednesday, May 13 

I am headed to an information session about the Pulse program on Wednesday morning. I haven’t worked with Pulse, but have heard great things. We are eager at Pittsburgh Glass Center (PGC) to partner with them. Later in the day I am meeting a potential new PGC board member that we learned about through the BoardsWork program at RMU.

Thursday, May 14

I promised my husband Chris that I would assist him blowing glass to create new work for a show he is in at PGC that opens in June called Out of the Archives and Into the Gallery. It’s a pretty cool concept. Glass artists were invited to visit the Carnegie Museum of Natural History’s archive collection to identify an ancient piece of glass as inspiration for new work. They were asked to research, recreate and reinterpret the piece of ancient glass for an exhibition in PGC’s Hodge Gallery this summer.

Every Thursday night in the summer I play bocce in a women’s league in Morningside where I live. It is so much fun to get together with women of all ages and enjoy each other’s company and some friendly competition. After the games we usually all end up at the Bulldog Pub in Morningside for a drink.

Friday, May 15

I am going to try to sneak over to Concept Art Gallery to see my friend Alison and to preview the estate auction of Aaronel Deroy Gruber, which has some AMAZING works in it.

If the weather is nice later that afternoon I will probably try to lure a group of friends to Kelly’s Bar and Lounge to enjoy their lovely patio and great happy hour specials.

Saturday, May 16

My husband and I have been painstakingly restoring our 1910 Arts and Crafts home in Morningside for the last 11 years. When we moved in, one of the things we fell in love with was the large mahogany bar with brass rail in our basement. It has a label on it from Sack Fixture in Pittsburgh, which went out of business a number of years ago.

We have finally restored the bar and renovated the basement and we’re having a blowout bash to celebrate. We hired Mercurio’s mobile pizza oven to come to the party to make pizza for our guests. We will be pouring all our local favorite spirits like Boyd & Blair, Wigle Whiskey and Maggie’s Farm Rum until the wee hours of the morning. Since we have all been missing Belvedere’s Ultra-Dive’s 90s night since the fire in January, we might even have a dance party on the newly refinished hardwood floors.

Sunday, May 17

Recuperate from the party!