Manchester Craftsmen's Guild

Gifts from the Guild 2014

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GFTGGifts from the Guild, the MCG Youth & Arts annual holiday arts & crafts sale, will be held on December 5 – 6, 2014.

Please visit us Friday between 10 am and 6 pm, and Saturday between 3 and 9 pm.

Proceeds benefit youth arts education.

Winter 2015 Enrollment

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Screen Shot 2014-11-21 at 1.58.26 PMThe dates for Winter 2015 after-school enrollment are December 10 and 11.

See what we’re offering this fall in:

Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild will hold two enrollment sessions for our upcoming after-school courses (ATP) from 3:00–5:30 p.m. Students will be introduced to MCG Youth & Arts, its teachers and the facilities. You must attend one of these sessions to be eligible for admission. Click here for more info.

Non-PPS students may register online for a fee. Please click here for online registration.

Photo Exhibit Shines Light on “Good” Work

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Screen Shot 2014-10-20 at 10.15.27 AMFrom the Tribune-Review:

Manchester Craftsman Guild director Bill Strickland stands by some of the images of himself which are being used for a exhibit on Friday Oct. 17, 2014. Being Good is a collaborative effort to document three remarkable locals who are using their art, and committing their resources, to improve distressed neighborhoods in the city.

Read more.

Being Good

Screen Shot 2014-10-15 at 11.21.38 AMBeing Good is a collaborative effort to document three remarkable Pittsburghers who are using their art, and committing their resources, to improving distressed neighborhoods in the city: Vanessa German, poet, performance artist and sculptor, photographed by Lynn Johnson; Bill Strickland, ceramicist, educator and entrepreneur, photographed by Scott Goldsmith; and Randy Gilson, visual artist and gardener, photographed by Brian Cohen.

Being Good runs from October 27, 2014 through January 2, 2015 at Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild. A reception and artist talk are scheduled for November 6th from 6 – 8 pm. This event is free and open to the  public.

The Artists

Brian Cohen is a graduate of the Royal College of Art, He specializes in documentary and editorial photography. He holds a Ph.D. in Art History from Binghamton University at the State University of New York with expertise in Visual Culture Studies. Cohen has published work on the role of photography in shaping public opinion. His latest photographic work focuses on documenting Pittsburgh’s remarkable transition, and is featured regularly in NEXT Pittsburgh.

Scott Goldsmith has photographed feature stories for National Geographic, LIFE, TIME, Fortune, Business Week, Sports Illustrated and People. His work has taken him to the jungles of Costa Rica, the swamps of Jamaica, the slums of Haiti, caves, deserts, and several rides on Air Force One.  He has worked in 49 of the 50 US states and 10 foreign countries and has won over 100 awards for his work. In October of 2011 he was honored by the National Academy of Science for work published by National Geographic.

Lynn Johnson holds a B.A. in Photographic Illustration and Photojournalism from the Rochester Institute of Technology, and a Masters from the School of Visual Communications at Ohio University. She was a staff photographer at The Pittsburgh Press for seven years before beginning her freelance career as a contract photographer for Black Star then Aurora Photos. Johnson was awarded the National Geographic Photographers’ Photographer award for 2013. She is currently represented by the National Geographic Image Collection.

The Subjects

Bill Strickland is the President and CEO of Manchester Bidwell Corporation. He founded Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild in 1968. In 1996, he received the MacArthur “Genius” Award for leadership and ingenuity in the arts. Strickland was chosen by President Obama to serve on the White House Council for Community Solutions in December 2010. NCECA recognized Strickland with the Outstanding Achievement award at the 2012 conference. Strickland, his wife Rose and daughter Olivia, reside on the North Side of Pittsburgh.

Randy Gilson moved to the Northside 30 years ago, and despite the conditions he fell in love with the neighborhood. So he started picking up litter and planting miniature gardens. In 1995 he purchased a dilapidated building on Arch Avenue which he turned into a veritable work of art (if you walk down that street, it’s hard to miss). By involving community members, his enthusiasm spread and many residents began to take more pride in their neighborhood. According to Randy, “When you do more for others, you find that you do more for yourself.”

Vanessa German is a multidisciplinary artist who explores the power of transformation and healing through sculpture, poetry, photography and performance. Her mixed-media sculptures incorporate many objects found in her neighborhood, Homewood, including doll parts, antique tins, household objects and African beads. With her surreal, three-dimensional collages such as those from her “Tar Baby” series, Vanessa seeks to reclaim words and objects that symbolize the oppression of African Americans.

Family Night – Fall 2014

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Screen Shot 2014-11-04 at 2.48.14 PMWe at Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild would like to invite you, your family, and your friends to our Fall 2014 Family Night on Thursday, November 20, 2014 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

By attending you’ll have the chance to see the works of art created by MCG’s dedicated afterschool students and to meet the staff that works with and inspires them daily. Refreshments will be served and our four art making studios will host tours, demonstrations and artist talks. This is an excellent opportunity for you to celebrate your child’s accomplishments with us during the afterschool hours this winter.

Radical Days 2014 Photo Booth

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2014 Arts DOG

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ArtDog1Arts Day of Giving, affectionately called ArtsDOG, is an 18-hour opportunity for arts lovers to donate online to their favorite arts and culture nonprofits and have their contributions partially matched, making your dollars go further.

The October 2 Arts Day of Giving is sponsored by the Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council and The Pittsburgh Foundation.

We hope you will save the date and plan to participate-it’s as easy as 1-2-3…

1. On Thursday, October 2, 2014, visit the Pittsburgh Gives website,, between 6:00 am and midnight.

2 . Select our organization-your Organization Name here-from the
online list. Gifts as low as $15 can be made – please give generously!

3. Your dollars will be partially matched, helping your donation go further
to support the arts!

We appreciate your support on Oct. 2 – Arts Day of Giving. Thank you!

RADical Days 2014

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Screen Shot 2014-09-25 at 12.40.40 PMCelebrate RADical Days with MCG Youth & Arts on Saturday, October 11th. From 5:00 – 6:30 you can see pottery demos, make bracelets and necklaces, or have your photo taken in our photo booth. Stick around for an MCG Jazz concert. Free and open to the public.

Fall 2014 Courses for Adults

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MCG Youth & Arts offers art classes for adults as well as youth. Take the time out of your busy life to pause, connect and create in one of Pittsburgh’s best art facilities. Whether you’re an artist, art educator, art lover, or someone seeking a hands-on hobby, our staff of professional teaching artists will help you nourish your spirit in our beautiful and unique facility.

Digital Illustration
Teaching Artist: Jill Wiggins
Oct 1 – Dec 3 (10 classes)
6 – 9 pm
Tuition: $200
Materials: $50
Open To: All Experience Levels
Learn to create beautiful vector graphics in this class featuring Adobe Illustrator. Each week you will create a unique piece of artwork that can be resized infinitely while remaining crisp when printed. This is possible because Illustrator draws with paths not pixels. Some of the projects you’ll be creating include a logo, a perspective (architectural) drawing, maps and infographics. We’ll even create a cartoon character!

Studio Pottery
Teaching Artist: Jeff Guerrero
Oct 7 – Nov 25 (8 classes)
6 – 9 pm
Tuition: $160
Materials: $60
Open To: All Experience Levels
Whether you’re a total beginner or an experienced potter, you’ll have a great time at MCG. Although we tend to gravitate towards wheel throwing and functional pottery, you are welcome to create hand-built ornamental and sculptural work, as well. Works made in this class will be high-fired in our gas kiln so they’ll look great and also be microwave and dishwasher safe.

Click here to register online, download a the registration form and mail it in with a check, or call Rose Mary Gubser at 412-322-1773 x302

MCG Alumnus Casey Droege Named to 40 Under 40

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Screen Shot 2014-09-05 at 5.22.55 PMCasey Droege has a long and storied history with the MCG Youth & Arts program. She was a brilliant student who won numerous awards and scholarships. She returned to MCG as a teaching artist and worked her way up to a leadership position as a coordinator in the Youth & Arts program. As much as it was difficult for her to move on, she is now an assistant professor at the Art Institute of Pittsburgh and an adjunct assistant professor at CMU. And she never ceases to create, produce and inspire—all day, every day.

We are overwhelmingly proud that Casey has been named to the 2014 40 Under 40. Each year, Pittsburgh Magazine and PUMP sponsor the 40 Under 40 Program with the goal of recognizing 40 people under the age of 40 who are committed to shaping our region and making it a better place for everyone to live, work and play.

Learn more about Casey and her work at

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