This Friday, June 21st, one of the best parties in town will erupt on the longest night of the year. The summer solstice seems the perfect night for the Mattress Factory
museum of contemporary art to host its singular Urban Garden Party
For its latest installment, the Garden Party
provides a hint of the museum's fall 2013 exhibition--Detroit: Artists in Residence
--with a benefit bash that takes a cue from the legendary groove, glamour and creative vision of soulful Detroit. Garden-goers will travel back to when outfits were flashier, hairstyles were funkier and 45 rpm was the only speed in town. Dubbed Soul Factory: Motown at the Museum
, this year's benefit bash also marks the museum's 35th year.
Arrive early and with an appetite to sample the spread, which will feature 40 of Pittsburgh’s top restaurants and caterers, including All in Good Taste Productions, Bar Marco, E2, Fukuda, Legume, Marty's Market, PGH Taco Truck, Tender, Verde, Wigle Whiskey, and more.
In between noshing, explore interactive art, bid on one-of-a-kind works made from hubcaps and enjoy Motown-themed pop-up performances by Kierra Darshell's Divas of Drag, DJ Zimmie, El Monics, The MadHouse, and Zany Umbrella Circus. Don your grooviest 1960s-era threads and head into the Motown photo booth to create a keepsake. Helping to get your groove on will be headlining act, Vancouver-based DJ The Gaff
, who brings his psychedelic soul show to the Northside for just one night.
For the first time in Garden Party history, the Mattress Factory is hosting an official after-party. Following the funk fest, head over to nearby Penn Brewery Make sure to bring your wristband for access to drink discounts.
Just 36 hours later, on Sun., June 23rd, head back to the museum for its annual Community Urban Garden Party
, from 1 to 5 p.m. Turn old vinyl record albums into art with Assemble, create work to add to the Museum's upcoming MoTOWN art installation and construct musical instruments from recycled materials for a noise party! On the main stage, enjoy performances by Pittsburgh Heat Hip-Hop Dance Company, theater workshops and performances by The Zany Umbrella Circus, and music by DJ Andrew Edmonds' Vinyl Showcase.
Additional activities will include screen printing with Artist Image Resource (AIR); an interactive animated collage inspired by Smokey Robinson's Motown hit, "Cruisin'" led by the puppeteers from The Schmutz Company; book-related activities led by Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh and Reading is FUNdamental; and a screening of Art21: New York Close Up presented by the Allegheny YMCA.