Alloy Pittsburgh is a unique visual and performing arts project co-founded by Pittsburgh artists Sean Derry and Chris McGinnis. The project was developed in collaboration with the Rivers of Steel National Heritage Area and the Kipp Gallery at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. Alloy Pittsburgh offers 15 artists from the greater Pittsburgh region the opportunity to develop temporary site-based artworks for the Carrie Furnace National Historic Landmark.

Project Description

The Project:

For nearly a century a collection of hot blast furnaces known as the Carrie Furnaces transformed raw materials into molten iron. The 135 acre Carrie Furnace site was coordinated to maximize iron production. With the quieting of the furnaces in the late 1970’s, the principle force that defined the site vanished. Without an industrial purpose the Carrie Furnaces were slowly transformed by artists and others. Inverting its prior purpose, the abandoned site was reimagined as a depository of raw materials.  Instead of rock and ore, individuals harvested cable, channel and plate.   

With the formation of the Rivers of Steel National Heritage Area, efforts are underway to preserve the remaining Carrie Furnaces as an important artifact of Pittsburgh’s industrial history. While the Carrie Furnaces National Historic Landmark still retains an abundance of “raw materials”, it is far more important than the value of this scrap. The magnificence of the site can be partially attributed to the history imbedded in the furnaces two inch thick steel walls. Despite the fact that the furnaces last fired decades ago, the complex retains a compelling metaphoric energy.  We hope to utilize this residual heat as a catalyst for the development and presentation of a collection of temporary site-based art works. Projects will examine the site’s history, current condition and possible futures without permanently transforming the characteristics of the Carrie Furnaces.

Alloy Pittsburgh is a unique visual and performing arts initiative developed and administered by the Kipp Gallery at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. The program is conceived as an incubator where 15 regional artists from the region benefit from peer support and enhanced curatorial assistance. After being selected, artists participate in a laboratory where they initiate parallel conversations with the site during a week-long research residency. Following the residency, artists will finalize their plans and begin work on their respective projects. A program representative affiliated with the Kipp Gallery will remain in close contact with each artist throughout the production of their project and provide assistance when possible. The completed artworks will be simultaneously presented in a one of a kind art event to be held at the Carrie Furnaces National Historic Landmark in the fall of 2015. The public will be able to view the work on select days during a 2-3 week time period.  Proceeds from ticket sales will benefit Rivers of Steel and Alloy Pittsburgh.

Participants + Audience:
Alloy Pittsburgh was founded with the desire to cultivate ambitious projects that may not otherwise reach the public. As a result we actively recruit emerging artist and underrepresented voices from the region.  Due to the one week research residency associated with Alloy Pittsburgh we intend to target both visual and performing artists from the Mid-Atlantic Region for participation. 
While we believe this unique event will interest people already familiar with Rivers of Steel and the Carrie Furnaces National Historic Landmark, we hope to also attract viewers that have little or no prior awareness of the site. The outreach and marketing efforts associated with Alloy Pittsburgh are intended to broaden the public’s awareness of Alloy Pittsburgh/Rivers of Steel as well as the participating artists.

§        Cultivate ambitious projects that may not otherwise reach the public
§        Support artists from the Mid-Atlantic Region
§        Stimulate cross-media research by bringing together visual and performing artists
§        Perform theoretical and applied research on new artist centered exhibition formats
§        Provide a forum for investigating the creative reuse of post-industrial spaces
§        Offer the public an innovative way to engage with Pittsburgh’s industrial history
    Alloy Pittsburgh was co-founded by Sean Derry and Chris McGinnis and is administered by the Kipp Gallery at Indiana University of Pennsylvania

Kipp Gallery
Sprowls Hall, Room 115
470 South Eleventh Street
Indiana, Pennsylvania 15705

P: 724-357-7677
F: 724-357-3296


  1. Hi, Well designed and interesting blog. We Manufacture & Supply Industrial Furnace .
    Thanks for sharing.

  2. If you had financial problems, then it is time for you to smile. You only need to contact Mr. Benjamin  with the amount you wish to borrow and the payment period that suits you and you will have your loan  within three working days. I just benefited for the sixth time a loan of 700 thousand dollars for a period of 180 months with the possibility of paying before the expiration date. Mr Benjamin has be helping me with loan.Make contact with him and you will see that he is a very honest man with a good heart.His email is and his WhatApp phone number is + 1-989-394-3740