James E. "Pe-Wee" White
Some people may have come across a small salon next to Concept, gallery in Regent Square which until now has never had a formal show. The gallery is run by an insanely dedicated Pittsburgh character and collector named Pat MacCardle.
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The Brigadoon show is also a window into little-known aspects of the local art scene. Some contributors, for instance, were affiliated with The Archive, a 1970s-era Hill District studio and exhibition space run by artist Dennis Morgan. They include Gist; sculptor and collage artist Amir Rashidd; and the late Carl "Dingbat" Smith, a sculptor known for his inventive use of nails.
While some artists in the show have exhibited elsewhere, McArdle and many contributors agree that gallery opportunities for black artists are limited. And it's not just a matter of Pittsburgh's moribund art market, which sends even pros like Gist out of town to sell their work. "A lot of times when I'm in a show, I'm the only black guy in the show," says Meyers.
As always Pat has managed to introduce a me to a few people I was totally unfamiliar with.
The African American Artists of Pittsburgh continues through April 23. Brigadoon Art Salon, 1033 S. Braddock, Ave., Edgewood. 412-512-2830
There are no regular hours but Pat will likely be there if he can on Saturdays and Sundays.
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