Wednesday, February 8, 2017

MF Shop Artist Feature // Maria Mangano




This month the MF Shop is proudly featuring artist Maria Mangano! Born in Syracuse, New York, Mangano moved to Pittsburgh to attend Carnegie Mellon University where she earned her BFA in Printmaking/Drawing/Painting.

The artist finds inspiration at the Carnegie Museum of Natural History as well as the way nature seeps into our daily lives. Mangano's work focuses on the intersection of nature, museums and science to address the issues of wilderness, conservation, memory and humanness. She currently maintains a studio in Point Breeze, where she works on a variety of prints, mixed media installations, and drawings.


We spoke to Mangano about her current practice and also the way one of her favorite pieces at the Mattress Factory influenced her work, "Dan Steinhilber's Untitled [2006] had a really big effect on me," said Mangano. "Not because of the piece itself necessarily, although it was extraordinary and memorable, but because I was working as an installer and watched him spend months testing out ideas and playing with materials. He got pretty far along one particular path before scrapping it very close to the show's opening and made something totally different. It really taught me that you can't be afraid to change course and undo your previous work in pursuit of the best possible art you can
make."



To see a special display of Mangano's prints and collages, visit the MF Shop where you will find a selection of curated art books, artisan jewelry, and home decor. Open Tuesday - Saturday 10am - 5pm and Sunday 1pm - 5pm. Remember, admission is not required to shop!

Friday, January 20, 2017

MF Shop // Artist Feature: Adam J. Waddell

If you've ever meandered through the MF Shop or even the local Pittsburgh art scene, then you'll probably recognize Adam Waddell's work of AJW Creations. Adam's pieces include unique handmade items such as home decor, ceramic housewares, sculptures, and jewelry. The MF Shop has carried pieces from AJW Creations since the Spring of 2014, and this month we're happy to announce that he's our featured artist!

Born in Beaver, Pa, but raised in Corry, Pa, Adam cultivated a passion for art through the influence of his mother and grandmother. Currently, the artist maintains his practice through pottery, sculpture, industrial designs, and glass blowingWe were delighted to have Adam join us in conversation about his work.
Q. What are your biggest inspirations for your current body of work?
A. I think my main inspiration is found in simple form with simple design. 

Q: Were you a big 'maker' as a kid? If so what did you make?
A: As a kid I was always making things. I grew up in the country so a big part of my childhood was spent playing in the woods. I would make little clay pots and carve walking sticks and such. 

Q: If you could make artwork on a grand scale, as in physically large - what would you create and where would it live?
A: It would be really fun to make giant human forms in the ocean. Something you could climb up and scuba dive under? I would also like to spend some time in Scotland by the coast. Something about the cold rough ocean attracts me, or Maine will do. 

Q: What does an average day look like in your studio?
A: Average day in my studio looks like organized chaos. Between making jewelry, pottery, packaging it can be alittle challenging. I work from a home studio which means I work out of two spare rooms but I like to start with a clean studio. 

Q: What has been your favorite Mattress Factory Installation?
A: My favorite Mattress Factory Installation is the Yayoi Kusama infinity dots. I love sitting in there. 


To see more of Adam's work for yourself, visit the MF Shop! Admission is NOT required to shop!

Monday, October 17, 2016

RECAP // Coffee Date with Stephen Bram

Last Saturday, we settled into the Mattress Factory Café to start off a new season of Coffee Dates and chat with Australian artist Stephen Bram, one of the exhibiting artists in the recently opened Factory Installed show. Stephen’s piece, "Third floor West gallery 500 Sampsonia Way," is an architectural installation that uses shifted perspective to create a three dimensional space of smooth white walls and exposed timber.


We started the morning with an insightful discussion about the similarities and differences between Pittsburgh and Stephen’s hometown of Melbourne. As usual, conversation was accompanied by piping-hot coffee from Commonplace Coffeehouse, teas from Arnold’s Tea, and fresh donuts from Priory Bakery. After we had our fill, we headed up into the gallery to see Stephen’s piece and to talk about it in the gallery space. Because the piece had just opened the night before, most members were seeing this room-sized structure for the first time.



Stephen answered numerous questions about the construction and design of his piece. One of his favorite aspects of "Third floor West gallery 500 Sampsonia Way" is the way that the structure interacts with each of the permanent installations that surround it. Whether the pieces deal with perspective, like James Turrell and Sarah Oppenheimer's works, or an autobiographical concept, as with Greer Lankton's work, he appreciates that almost everything on the third floor can connect in some way.

Members, be sure to RSVP for the next Coffee Date this Saturday, October 8th, with Mohammed Musallam. We hope to see you there!

Monday, August 22, 2016

RECAP // Coffee Date with Kevin Clancy

On August 20th, members filled the Mattress Factory Café for coffee and conversation at the last Coffee Date of the series with 2016 Factory Installed artist Kevin Clancy. Kevin’s piece, IRIS_SIRI, is on display in our gallery at 1414 Monterey Street.

We started out the morning with hot coffee from Commonplace Coffee just around the corner, teas from Arnold’s Tea, and delicious specialty breads from Breadworks Bakery. After a quick introduction, the group headed down to 1414 Monterey to view IRIS_SIRI. After gaining some insight into how he pays homage to other MF Artists like James Turrell and Yayoi Kusama, we asked a couple more questions and then made our way back to the café to continue the discussion. 


Conversation changed quickly from chatting about the cat Kevin lives with (his roommate’s grey tabby) and questions about his background, to how technology and social media are changing how we interact with other people and affecting important global events. We were lucky enough to have a broad range of ages participating in this event, so we heard and assortment of stories and experiences about social media, texting, and time.

Members, look out for a postcard in the mail for the next series of Coffee Dates, starting Saturday, September 17th with Mohammed Musallam. We hope to see you there, and make sure to RSVP! 

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

RECAP // Coffee Date with Lauren Kalman


Last Saturday, Mattress Factory members met in the Mattress Factory Café to chat with exhibiting artist Lauren Kalman over coffee, bread and tea. Lauren’s piece, Strangers to the Garden, is one of four installations in the Factory Installed show currently exhibited in the 1414 Monterey Street satellite gallery.

Once members made their way out of the rain and into the café, everyone had their fill of breads from BreadWorks Bakery and caffeinated with coffee from Commonplace Coffeehouse and tea from Arnold’s Tea. Lauren gave an overview of her piece and the idea behind her current series But if the Crime is Beautiful… which led to a lively discussion about how she sees jewelry and adornment in general, and how that influences her work. After learning about the process behind creating the 30,000+ gold foil kudzu leaves in her work, which utilized 3D printing during its pressing, we talked about technology and its growing role in even traditional forms of art, such as metalwork and jewelry making.


The highlight of the event was our trip over to 1414 Monterey to see Strangers to the Garden with Lauren. For many of the members, it was their first time seeing the piece. Being able to talk with the artist while taking in her piece in was a great experience for everyone and provided perspective for our discussion in the café.

Members, don't forget to RSVP to join us for the next Coffee Date with Kevin Clancy on Saturday, August 20. We hope to see you there! 

Friday, July 29, 2016

MF Member Summer Guide


Members — don't miss out on the special events we're offering this summer! As part of the benefits of MF Membership, we offer special programming designed with our members in mind.

Select Saturday mornings are reserved for Coffee Dates. Start the weekend off with coffee and conversation with Factory Installed artists — FREE for members! Have questions about the pieces that are currently on exhibit? Use this unique opportunity to meet and converse with the artists themselves about it, face-to-face.

Previous Coffee Date with Factory Installed artist Bill Smith

Feel free to bring along non-member guests and/or friends who have paid for the day's admission! (They'll thank you later.)

Upcoming Coffee Dates
July 30: Lauren Kalman
August 20: Kevin Clancy

Not much of a morning person? Check out our all-new series ART AND... taking place on selected Thursdays from 6-8 pm. Raise a glass with us in an intimate evening, featuring an exclusive behind-the-scenes look with exhibiting artists. More than just a lecture, this programming series is designed to get you up close to the works — and to the artists who make them. RSVP to education@mattress.org as space is limited!

Upcoming ART AND...
August 18: Kevin Clancy
September 15: Dennis Maher
October 6: Mohammed Musallam


While you're in the galleries, make sure to stop by the MF Shop and Café to use your membership 10% discount! We have a great curated collection of one-of-a-kind limited edition artists prints and books, museum catalogs, MF logowear and unique housewares for you to choose from. And due to popular demand, we've now expanded our hours to six days a week. So now you can enjoy our delicious summer menu, with soup, salads, sandwiches and entrees from Coca Café, every day the museum is open. Or just drop by when you have the time — museum admission is not required to shop or dine!


These are just some of the experiences and benefits that you, as a Member, can enjoy at the Mattress Factory this summer. We're always looking to expand on the opportunities that we offer you in exchange for your valued support.

If you're not a Member yet and don't want to miss, join today and be a part of the art!


On View This Summer


Spend your summer at the Mattress Factory! There's plenty to see in our galleries, and we don't want you to miss out...so here's a short guide of what's currently on view here at MF.

The Mattress Factory is home to a growing permanent collection of installation art — from the ever-popular Repetitive Vision (Yayoi Kusama) to the recently unveiled Acupuncture (Hans Peter Kuhn) sitting atop our roof. But don't forget to look for the more subtle installations hidden in the museum, like William Anastasi's minimalist wall drawings and Rolf Julius' music-playing terra cotta flowerpots.

Families and children in Yayoi Kusama's Repetitive Vision

Stop by to take a last look at Factory Installed at 500 Sampsonia Way, featuring the works of Lisa Sigal, Bill Smith and Rob Voerman, before it closes in early August.

Bill Smith, spherodendron, 2015

The works of David Bowen, Kevin Clancy, Lauren Kalman and Wendy Judge are also currently on view! The artists have completely transformed the galleries at 1414 Monterey Street with their own distinctive approach to the creative process. A few highlights: sliced mountains, space debris, cats, a money machine and gold leaves.

Kevin Clancy, IRIS_SIRI, 2016

As always, feel free to take pictures as you visit our galleries — and use #MattressFactory to share your photos with us!


Why not learn about the exhibitions as you visit? Drop in the museum for an interactive tour of our current exhibitions — it's FREE with museum admission! These tours are a treat, so please do stop by when you get the chance!

We are busier than ever this summer! If you're interested in learning more about what we do here or want to help out, we encourage you to volunteer. We're always looking for a helping hand, and we would love to get to know our dedicated viewers and patrons personally. Feel free to drop come to the Volunteer Open House + Orientation for a talk + tour of MF.

Keep an eye out for more installation openings and events that may be coming soon! We want you to get the most out of your visits here. See you soon!