The Allegheny County Parks Foundation, in partnership with Allegheny County, is creating the Hartwood Acres Sculpture Garden, an outdoor exhibition space for public art and community engagement. It will feature a total of 13 works of art and will add to its permanent collection as new pieces become commissioned or available. It will provide educational resources about this pivotal postmodern era in American art and offer opportunities for cultural programming, events, arts education, exhibitions and leisurely contemplation. 

Following several years of planning, the first step in this project could occur in Summer 2019 when two sculptures will be moved to new settings and restored on site. As funding becomes available, six sculptures will be temporarily removed from Hartwood Acres Park and restored off site while their new bases are constructed. It is expected that much of the Hartwood Acres Sculpture Garden could be completed by the end of 2020, depending on funding and weather. The remaining sculptures will be restored on site at a later date.

The Hartwood Acres sculptures were acquired nearly 40 years ago by then-Allegheny County Parks Director Carol Brown as gifts from the sculptors.  Ms. Brown currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Allegheny County Parks Foundation. Over time, as the pieces weathered, ACPF and Allegheny County explored options for restoration. When a 2016 appraisal valued the sculpture collection at $2.4 million, the plan to relocate the pieces to a cohesive sculpture garden to encourage greater visitor engagement began in earnest. Funders to date include Allegheny Foundation, The Fine Foundation, Hillman Foundation, Fox Chapel Garden Club and The Charity Randall Foundation is providing funding to create a permanent endowment fund for long-term maintenance of the sculpture collection, “ensuring that the collection remains a jewel of Allegheny County for years to come,” according to its grant. 

Additionally, this project is being supported by a RADical ImPAct Grant from the Allegheny Regional Asset District (RAD). This grant, which was awarded to Allegheny County as the Parks Foundation's partner on this project, celebrates RAD's 25th Anniversary.  This project was selected by RAD because it brings art to public parks. 

“Giving the public more opportunities for engaging with these unique works of art, in a setting immersed in nature, has been the guiding force behind this project,” said Caren Glotfelty, ACPF executive director. “We’re excited to inspire young artists and encourage school children from throughout the region to experience this collection in a fresh and meaningful way.”

ACPF works in partnership with Allegheny County by providing planning and resources to improve, conserve and restore the nine County Parks. ACPF is supervising the restoration of the sculptures and the design aspects of the project, while Allegheny County Parks is coordinating with Allegheny County Facilities Management and Public Works to handle many aspects of the site preparation and sculpture installation in-house, at a significant savings to the overall cost of the project. Preliminary cost estimates to complete the project range from $2 million to $4 million. Additional work that Allegheny County trades do not handle, such as rigging and transporting the sculptures, landscape plantings and other specialized construction operations, will be contracted to outside vendors.

Hartwood Acres Sculpture Garden will be in the vicinity of the Mansion at Hartwood Acres Park. Hartwood Acres Park is 629 acres in the Pittsburgh suburban communities of Hampton and Indiana townships. The centerpiece of the park is the Hartwood manor country estate that provides a glimpse into Pittsburgh's past with guided tours of the furnished mansion and stables that were built in the 1920s. The park is well–known for its outdoor recreation assets and entertainment, including summer concerts at the Amphitheater. The original horse trails are still used for riding, biking, running, hiking and cross country skiing.

The nine Allegheny County Parks, which at 12,000 acres comprise one of the largest public park systems in the country, receive more than 22 million visitations each year.

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