Mobile Sculpture Workshop – roving public art apprenticeship program

In 2013, a group of artists got together to brainstorm about how to engage youth not only in the process of making art but also in community service. The result was the Mobile Sculpture Workshop (MSW), a public art mentoring and apprenticeship program on wheels.

In 2014, MSW launched its first project, taking its work all over the region. Tim Kaulen, one of the project’s founders, was inspired by its success and credits the team’s hard work. “MSW 14 was an incredible, inspiring occurrence, starting with our team of artists and teachers. This effort came with a fair amount of work … but the obvious benefits of watching these kids really take to the project and call it their own was truly rewarding.”

This year, MSW is looking to expand and continue its work. They have launched a campaign with only a few more days and a long way to go. According to Kaulen, MSW’s long-range goal includes creating an artist and learning center in Hazelwood where the MSW program will continue to serve communities as a roving art and teaching machine.

Child's Drawing

The Pittsburgh Home – providing a home for homeless

Did you know that there is a pay-what-you-can hostel in Lawrenceville? In 2012, Jon Potter founded the hostel inspired by his experiences traveling the world and being welcomed in homes—for free—in the spirit of age-old hospitality.

Potter, an active community volunteer, is looking to provide that same welcoming experience to those who are homeless. “I often volunteer at Red Door downtown (a soup kitchen) and met many who were homeless. Many find that the environment that traditional shelters provide—while essential—can sometimes be demoralizing.”

Potter has launched a campaign for The Pittsburgh Home—a shelter for the homeless—to provide an option for the homeless that would feel like a home. “I want it to be an encouraging environment. A physical home, with an address that residents can use when they are applying for jobs. A place that would help them get off the streets for good.”

He put out a call on Reddit to ask for help and was overwhelmed with the support—from lawyers volunteering to set up a nonprofit to contractors willing to donate their time. Potter is raising funds to purchase property and rebuild it to realize his vision for a “safe and free place for the homeless men and women of Pittsburgh to call their own.”


412 Made – 7 artists represent Pittsburgh in New York City

In a first for Pittsburgh, seven artists–Kilolo Luckett, Atticus Adams, Ryan Lammie, Mia Tarducci Henry, Gavin Benjamin, Nathan Lucas and Jason Boone–have been selected to show their work at the influential Architectural Digest Home Design Show in New York City.

These artists are among the most talented and enterprising artists in Pittsburgh and are leaders in our city’s art scene.

They were able to cover their personal travel expenses but fell short when it came to logistics such as truck rental costs to transport their work. So they launched a campaign–now fully funded–to cover the costs. And while the campaign has reached its goal, this project deserves mention in support of this unprecedented opportunity for local artists to showcase their work on a global stage.

Got a worthy crowdfunder that deserves attention? Email us or include it in the comments below.

Leah Lizarondo is a food advocate, writer and speaker. She is also the co-founder of 412 Food Rescue, an organization that seeks to eliminate food waste to make an impact on hunger and the environment. She is the Chief Veghacker, recipe creator and curator at The Brazen Kitchen, where she writes about food and food policy. She writes about the intersection of food, health, innovation and policy.