Urban Art programs at Rivers of Steel draw inspiration from the underground culture of local graffiti writers, urban explorers and gorilla artists who animated the Carrie Blast Furnaces and similar post-industrial sites across southwestern Pennsylvania, following the collapse of steel production in the 1980’s. Driven by a reverence for the region’s industrial roots and a strong sense of local identity, these street artists recognized unique opportunities for creative self-expression and cultural production amidst the abandoned factories.
Through public tours and workshops Rivers of Steel highlights the large collection of local, national and international graffiti murals installed throughout the Carrie Blast Furnaces. Urban Art Programs also include community-based activities that advocate for legal graffiti walls and promote the value of sanctioned aerosol art as a creative place making strategy.
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