Taking a Closer Look

Taking a Closer Look was developed by AAP artist educators in 2009 in collaboration with the Pittsburgh Public Schools to leverage the extraordinary collection of original art that is installed in the schools, consisting mostly of AAP members past and present and donated by 100 Friends of Art (FOA). FOA has been purchasing art from AAP for 95 years and donating the artwork directly to the Pittsburgh Public Schools.

The Friends of Art have donated money to purchase works of art from the Associated Artists of Pittsburgh Annual Exhibition, usually held at Carnegie Museum of Art. Those purchased works of art, have been donated to the Pittsburgh Public Schools and hang in the halls and classrooms of our schools. There are now over 340 artworks! These works of art have been created by professional artists and embody the history of this region and of art history.

In 1916, John L. Porter, who was interested in making Pittsburgh an art center as well as a steel center, contacted about 500 of his friends to establish a fund for the purchase of paintings from the annual Exhibition of the Associated Artists of Pittsburgh. The dues at that time were $10 and now are $50. The Friends of Art continue to purchase works every year and add to the Collection.

Porter himself described the rationale for this effort by stating that “this public school collection of Pittsburgh may someday contain paintings of exceptional value is not only a possibility, but….a probability, and who can tell but that its influence will have much to do with producing some day, one of the world’s greatest artists”.

The Friends of Art Collection in the Pittsburgh Public Schools has been cataloged and researched by students at the Pittsburgh Public Schools. Check out the slideshow below to see the AAP member work students researched. Click on the images for work information and student responses.

 Or click here to visit our flickr page directly. 

 Created with flickr slideshow.