Exhibitions and Archives: My Time Working with Associated Artists of Pittsburgh

Artist biographies I wrote for the 107th Annual catalogue.
 

Exhibitions and Archives: My Time Working with Associated Artists of Pittsburgh

Museum Studies Intern at Associated Artists of Pittsburgh - Fall 2019

In the fall of 2019, I had the opportunity to intern with the Associated Artists of Pittsburgh (AAP), an organization that has been bringing together artists of the Pittsburgh area for over 100 years. Through the years the AAP has supported and showcased the work of hundreds of distinguished artists including Andy Warhol and Mary Cassatt. As an intern with the AAP I got to research some of these artists in the organization’s archives, as well as assist in the set-up of their most recent exhibition, the 107th Annual, one of the longest running annual exhibitions in the world

With the upcoming 107th annual happening, many of my duties had to do with exhibition planning. A lot goes into the set-up of this exhibition, which I got to see and experience firsthand. I assisted with membership and PR duties, as well as with the exhibition catalogue. Every year, the organization creates a catalogue to celebrate and record the exhibition and awards, as well as to pay tribute to past members. For this catalogue, I had the opportunity to research and memorialize members of the organization who had passed in the last year by writing brief biographies of them. These were printed in the catalogue and will be read by hundreds who will attend the show. Creating something that would be read by that many people was so exciting and rewarding.

I had another opportunity to share my work with the public when the AAP was contacted by the Daedalus Foundation. They were asking for information about the abstract expressionist painter Robert Motherwell and his time in Pittsburgh. Motherwell juried the annual exhibition in 1950 so any information the AAP had on him was stored in the archives of the Heinz History Center or the Carnegie Museum of Art. It was my job to go and visit these places, and search through the 100+ years worth of monthly meeting notes, exhibition catalogs, and scrapbooks for anything I could find on Motherwell. I found quotes in newspaper articles from Motherwell, records of the luncheons members had before the exhibition, mail correspondence between Motherwell and other members, and more. It was great to be able to help out the Daedalus Foundation, and I got to learn about Motherwell and conducting archival research along the way.

My internship with AAP has been so enlightening. I gained valuable experience in helping set-up an exhibit, conducting archival research, and in helping with the office duties in an artist’s organization.

Categories: 
  • Academic Interns
  • Undergraduate Work
  • Collecting Knowledge Pittsburgh