By early March 2020, businesses small and large were shutting their doors. Events across the state were being canceled with no word on rescheduling. Schools were shifting to virtual learning. The coronavirus pandemic was taking hold of our communities in unprecedented ways. And Pittsburgh-area artists were left with no upcoming exhibitions, shows, residencies, performances, or gigs - essential sources of income.
Three Pittsburgh-area artists and community organizers were among the first to take action in support of the creative community. Julie Mallis, Joshua Orange, and sarah huny young - all personally affected by the pandemic - started the PGH Artist Emergency Fund on GoFundMe. Within two days, $10,000 had been raised to benefit local artists. At the time, artists could apply for up to $250 through the fund to help offset financial losses due to cancelled gigs and jobs.
Joshua Orange, sarah huny young, and Julie Mallis