Public Art Training for Artists

Shiftworks hosts a variety of different educational trainings for artists who are interested in working in the public realm.

Offerings include full-day intensive sessions, hands-on workshops, and visits to fabricators. Past and current offerings include:

Winter Intensive 2024: Performance + Public Space

This three-session program is designed to address public art topics in depth. This year, the program will explore various aspects of performance in public space. Pittsburgh-based performers Tess Dally, slowdanger, and Madame Christiane Dolores are the featured artists and guest speakers for Winter Intensive 2023. Each session will cover best practices for working with performance artists, particularly in activating public space, from three unique perspectives.

Public Art Training Camp

Public Art Training Camp is a series of six virtual, weekly training sessions for both emerging and mid-career artists interested in working in the public realm. Sessions will feature national and local speakers and cover a range of public art topics, including national trends in public art, finding and applying for opportunities, contracts & agreements, insurance for artists & organizations, project budgets, and permits and permissions.

Public Art 101

Since 2007, Shiftworks has hosted Public Art 101, a one-day, intensive training session for artists interested in working in the public realm. During Public Art 101, participants learn from local and national speakers about the history of, and how to make, public art. Topics have included: applying for public art opportunities, budgets and contracts, design tools, and presentations by artists to share their firsthand experiences working in the public realm.

Public Art 101 is enriched by the variety of local and national speakers that are able to provide perspective in regard to the public art process. Past presenters have included: Lucas Cowan, public art curator for the Rose Kennedy Greenway; Stacy Levy, artist; Alisha Wormsley, artist; Clayton Merrell, artist; Brandi Reddick, public arts administrator; Kendall Henry, New York City-based artist and curator; Norie Sato, artist; Charlotte Cohen, Brooklyn Arts Council; and Shiftworks staff.

As part of Public Art 101, Shiftworks hosts Portfolio Reviews. Portfolio Reviews occur the day before Public Art 101 and encourage Pittsburgh-based artists to register for 20-minute sessions with portfolio reviewers to show their work and receive personal feedback.

Public Art 201

In addition to Public Art 101, Shiftworks offers Public Art 201. Public Art 201 occurs 2 to 3 times a year, and is a one-to-two hour workshop for artists to get an in-depth look into a specific part of the public art process featured during Public Art 101. Past Public Art 201s have provided artists the opportunity to visit fabricators and to receive one-on-one training during small design workshops to help artists learn more about design tools and receive feedback on proposals.

Upcoming Sessions