Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Raw Natural Born Artists Artists to Showcase Work at Cavo

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Raw Natural Born Artists Artists to Showcase Work at Cavo

Article excerpt

Why would you want art that is picked, practiced and packaged, contrived and cooked to appeal to masses?

Wouldn't you rather have it RAW?

"RAW: natural born artists" is an independent arts organization, for artists, by artists. I know, because that's what it says at the organization's website.

"We're a community made up of creative individuals across the nation," it states. "Our mission is to provide independent artists within the first 10 years of their career with the tools, resources and exposure needed to inspire and cultivate creativity."

RAW operates in 54 cities across the U.S. and Australia. And we are lucky enough to be among them.

Tonight, RAW Pittsburgh presents "Marvel," a showcase of 27 artists from independent film, fashion, music, visual art, performing art, hairstylists, makeup artists and more. The event, beginning at 8 p.m. at Cavo in the Strip District, is more than an exhibit. It's an experience.

"We do this once a month," said Leigh Yock, who serves as showcase director. "It provides a platform for emerging and established artists. For the most part, everybody that we showcase is from Pittsburgh.

"Sometimes we have RAW alumni from other cities come in and show in our city. It's a great way for artists to be more mobile. They can jump from city to city to show their art in new markets. That's why the national element is very cool."

Ms. Yock, 30, of Friendship, studied business, journalism and marketing while earning degrees from West Virginia University and Point Park University. An art collector more than an artist, she started her own company -- Nocturnal -- which helps support artists through marketing, corporate sponsorships and event planning.

She and her staff -- including Ryah Issa and Kyle Anthony Adams - - launched RAW Pittsburgh in February, and tonight will be their third event.

"At the beginning, it's more us finding them because it's still new," she said of the lineup they've brought together for tonight. "Right now, I'd say we sought out about 60 percent of them and 40 percent were submissions. But I think, as time goes on, that will flop."

Those who attend will not only see art displayed, they will see it created. …

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