Meet the KtB Team: Rich Fitzgerald

County Executive, Rich Fitzgerald

County Executive, Rich Fitzgerald

Knit the Bridge is a large-scale public art project.  Alongside all the makers, we worked closely with the Allegheny County Executive’s Office to ensure a safe, secure, and fabulous project.  Meet Rich Fitzgerald, Allegheny County Executive and key team member of Knit the Bridge, without whom the project would not have been possible.

1. What is your History with Pittsburgh?

I was born and raised in the City of Pittsburgh and continue to live here today with my wife and children.

2. What are you most excited about doing (or having done) as part of the core Knit the Bridge Team? I’m most excited about just being able to accomplish this.  This is my administration’s first public art project and so we looked for a benchmark for this. The closest we found was Toronto, so we believe this is the first in the country and we were excited to be the host of it.  We had excellent staff who diligently worked through the various issues needing to be addressed when hanging art on a superstructure like the Warhol Bridge. Without their help, this wouldn’t have been possible.

The County Executive with Lead Artist, Amanda Gross during the Knit the Bridge installation

The County Executive with Lead Artist, Amanda Gross during the Knit the Bridge installation

3. What do you see as the challenges?  

The biggest challenge was simply in thinking through and trying to identify all possible scenarios or issues related to this installation so we could be prepared for any eventuality.  The organizers and the county employees really did a fantastic job in taking this project from proposal, through development, due diligence, planning and installation – and are continuing to monitor the installation even today.

4. How can others support your work with KtB?

People can support this work by doing their own small part to recognize the importance of art in our community – whether it’s supporting a local artist, attending an exhibition, or working on another public art project.  We hope this is the first of many projects that are “knitting Pittsburgh communities together, one bridge at a time.”

Public art in Pittsburgh (photo cred: Katah Hart)

The Importance of Public art in Pittsburgh! (photo cred: Katah Hart)

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