This interview with Carolyn Pierotti is one we're particularly excited to share. We met Carolyn at the beginning of this year after being connected online for a few months and the chemistry and affinity were immediate. Her passion for her work and supporting other artists in Pittsburgh literally surrounds her like a halo of awesomeness. Her kitchen studio is filled with light and her home is brimming with a vibrant collection of artwork created by her kids, other artists, and herself. She's a force to be reckoned with and someone we're thrilled to call a friend and colleague.
What type of artist are you?
I guess I would call myself a mixed media artist, but I primarily work with acrylic paint.
Where are you from?
Originally I'm from Ambridge, Pennsylvania.
What neighborhood do you live in now?
I live in the Manchester section on the north side.
Why do you choose to make art in Pittsburgh?
I can't help myself. I'm here in Pittsburgh because I mean realistically, I just kind of have to be. I have a family here, so I choose to create here and again I choose to create because I don't have a choice. I think I would die if I couldn't paint. It's just a part of who I am and psychologically, it is a wonderful relief for me. I have kids and any parent will understand. It's one thing I can do where I can kind of take out my emotion or whatever I'm feeling that day and I can put it into my work.
What is your favorite part of being an artist in Pittsburgh?
Honestly, the networking. There are some really amazing people here. Amazing artists. For the most part, it's an incredibly friendly town. Everybody does know everybody. There are some wonderful artists here, and I'm the vice president of the Pittsburgh Society of Artists - it’s such a wonderful community. Really that's my favorite part, I think. That networking aspect and having that support. I don't think you would be able to find that anywhere else in a really big city.
What would love to see more of in the Pittsburgh arts scene?
I would like to see more support for women here in Pittsburgh. I don't think we have enough. I think that we need support helping young women who want to be curators or that want to get into the arts - they need help. I know when I graduated from Carlow, I didn't have any help. I had to figure everything out on my own. I know the Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council is amazing in what they do, but it would be really nice if we had some kind of a mentoring body for women specifically that want to get into that field or want to learn how to hang a show or they want to learn how to frame or they want to learn how to use power tools, because it's embarrassing to ask for help. I think we need that here desperately.
What’s your favorite music to jam to in the studio?
Depeche Mode or Ministry.
What other things do you do when you are not making art…that is,IF you have any free time?
Well, spend my free time with my kids. They are my favorite people, so in the summertime, we go to the pool a lot. Me and my son, we bike and it's not like I have an agenda. A lot of parents I think have this agenda where you've got to do this and do this and do this and do this or schedule it all the time. Oh my god, I grab life by the balls and whatever we're doing that day we do and we just kind of go with the flow, but spending time with my kids is what I do when I'm not making art.
What would you tell artists who are just starting out?
The advice I would give is to network yourself. Get involved with different organizations, volunteer, get out to as many gallery shows as you possibly can. See what other people are doing. It's inspiring. I think that's the advice I would give.
Come to Percolate Gallery because I’ll help you too.
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