Art Notes

Panelists to discuss how to build fun into playgrounds

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"Playing It (Too) Safe: Play, Playgrounds and the Value of Risk, A Community Conversation Around Play" is the topic of a free public panel that will be held from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Thursday at Carnegie Museum of Art.

The event is scheduled in conjunction with "The Playground Project," a component of the 2013 Carnegie International. The project curator, Gabriela Burkhalter, will return from Switzerland to examine the role of play sculpture in creating effective public gathering spaces. New York historian Susan Solomon will discuss the importance of risk and adventure in well-designed playgrounds. She is author of "American Playgrounds: Revitalizing Community Space." Wendy Nilsson, executive director of Partnership for Providence Parks, R.I., will share procedures to effectively assemble stakeholders -- including residents, schools, government and design professionals -- to steward neighborhood parks.

Local input will be given by Cara Ciminillo, of panel co-sponsor Pittsburgh Association for the Education of Young Children, who will focus on the state of play in Pittsburgh; a representative from a grassroots, North Braddock group that is working to revitalize a park in that community; and, representing Mayor Bill Peduto's office, Betty Cruz, the administration's nonprofit and faith-based manager.

The panel moderator will be Bill Isler, president of The Fred Rogers Company.

A reception with the panelists will follow. Information: or 412-622-3131.

Galileo and Chinese video

Two free public events at the University Art Gallery in the University of Pittsburgh's Frick Fine Arts Building exemplify the rich life experiences the humanities provide.

The 450th anniversary of the birth of Galileo will be celebrated from 3 to 5 p.m. Saturday with art and music inspired by the scientist's genius. Paolo Palmieri of the Department of History and Philosophy of Science will speak briefly on Galileo and his contributions. An interdisciplinary installation by Studio Arts faculty Michael Morrill and Aaron Henderson, and composer and Department of Music alumnus Philip Thompson, will be presented in the Rotunda gallery. Information:

An opening reception for the exhibition "Chinese Video Art & Documentary from Gao Minglu's Archives (1985-2005)" will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. Tuesday. The show, which continues through March 21, was curated by Mr. Gao, professor of the history of art and architecture, assisted by Madeline Enchenburg and other gallery interns. The works, none of which have been exhibited in the U.S. before, illustrate how Chinese artists and intellectuals responded to the rapid political and economic changes in China using eyes and even their bodies to address social concerns. Information: 412-648-2423.

Post-Gazette art critic Mary Thomas: or 412-263-1925.

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