newsworthyWinter 2015

The Winning Edge

A Carnegie Science Center initiative that’s helping schools and students across the country gain an edge in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) has captured the 2015 Roy L. Shafer Leading Edge Award for Business Practice from the Association of Science- Technology Centers (ASTC), whose member organizations number more than 600 worldwide. The aim of the award-winning Carnegie STEM Excellence Pathway is to guide schools on a path of continuous improvement by helping them integrate and gauge the effectiveness of STEM-based learning in the classroom. In its first year, 169 schools and school districts in 11 states and the District of Columbia are participating as Pathway Partners, translating to a reach of more than 3,000 schools and 2.6 million students. Participation is free to schools, thanks to support from The Heinz Endowments. With hundreds of science centers around the world eligible for the “Edgie” award, it’s rare to win one, yet this marks the Science Center’s third in six years.




Dippy Takes the Crown

With a cranky T. rex right at his heels, Carnegie Museum of Natural History’s Diplodocus carnegii (aka, Dippy) barely squeaked out a win in his museum’s bracket in the early rounds of the recent Clash of the Carnegies, an online contest celebrating Carnegie Museums’ 120th birthday. But there was no denying the public’s affection for the famous long-necked dinosaur when he faced off against the other treasured Clash finalists. On November 14, Carnegie Museums President Jo Ellen Parker announced that Dippy had beat out the Miniature Railroad & Village®, Vincent van Gogh’s Wheat Fields after the Rain, and Andy Warhol’s Silver Clouds as the best-loved Carnegie Museums attraction. After 5,200 votes were cast—two from as far away as Queensland, Australia, and Bologna, Spain—the Museum of Natural History and the 150-million-year-old sauropod named for Andrew Carnegie himself now have big-time bragging rights!




Unknown British artist, vase, 1815-1820, Alisa Mellon Bruce Collection

The number of works from Carnegie Museum of Art’s permanent collection on view as of mid-November. The museum boasts 31,113 paintings, sculpture, works on paper, photographs, films, videos, and decorative arts objects in its collection.







Andy Warhol, Self-Portrait No. 9, 1986, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Purchased through The Art Foundation of Victoria with the assistance of the National Gallery Women's Association, Governor, 1987 © The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc.; Gao Yuan, Ai Weiwei, 2012, Courtesy Ai Weiwei Studio © Gao Yuan

"To have an exhibition with Andy Warhol is something that was unthinkable. I greatly admire him and he is one of the most important figures in 20th-century American art. "
- Chinese artist and activist Ai Weiwei, who says he’s been greatly influenced by the Pop art icon,
as told to The Sydney Morning Herald. The exhibition Andy Warhol / Ai Weiwei opens at the National Gallery of Victoria in Melbourne, Australia, on December 11, 2015, and then at The Andy Warhol Museum on June 4, 2016.




February Free Days

Fourteen Pittsburgh cultural attractions, including the four Carnegie Museums, have banded together to show some love to their members with February Free Days. On designated dates, members of these organizations can explore the following cultural treasures free of charge: Sweetwater Center for the Arts (Feb. 3), the Mattress Factory (Feb. 6), the four Carnegie Museums (Feb. 7), Phipps Conservatory (Feb. 13), Heinz History Center, including Fort Pitt Museum
(Feb. 14), Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh (Feb. 19), Westmoreland Museum of American Art (Feb. 20), Frick Art & Historical Center (Feb. 21), The National Aviary (Feb. 26), Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium (Feb. 27), and Pittsburgh Botanical Gardens (Feb. 28). Free admission is valid for up to two adults and four children. Members will also enjoy 10 percent discounts on store purchases and new memberships, with a chance to win the grand prize: family memberships to every participating attraction!




When Pirate Parrots Fly

The Pittsburgh Pirates didn’t go all the way this season, but thanks to high-flying science, a Pirate Parrot action figure did reach the edge of space. On October 4, during pre-game festivities at PNC Park, the toy was launched into the mid-stratosphere—18 miles up—by way of a highaltitude, helium-filled weather balloon. The scientific stunt, part of Carnegie Science Center’s Girls Rock Science Weekend, was the brainchild of Science Center staff and education company Stratostar. Also attached to the balloon were sensors that sent real-time data about the stratosphere, the ozone, and solar radiation back to “Mission Control” at the Science Center, as well as special HD cameras that recorded the parrot’s ride. As the balloon eventually burst due to low atmospheric pressure (as expected), a parachute deployed and brought the Pirate Parrot and the monitoring equipment safely back to Earth—some 15 miles north of Pittsburgh.





Also in this issue:

The Elevation of Everyday Design  ·  Taking its Bow  ·  Art of the Now  ·  Inside the Cloud Factory  ·  President's Note  ·  About Town: Changing the Conversation  ·  Artistic License: In Full Light  ·  Travel Log  ·  The Big Picture