ARENA: REMEMBERING THE IGLOO Opens 1/17 at 707 Penn Gallery

The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust announces the opening of Arena: Remembering the Igloo by local photographer David Aschkenas. The exhibition presents a visual record of Pittsburgh's Civic Arena's last months in operation and during its yearlong demolition process. The exhibition is on view January 17-March 2, 2014, at 707 Penn Gallery in the Cultural District, and an opening reception takes place January 17, 2014, from 5:30 to 8 p.m.

The Pittsburgh Civic Arena operated in downtown Pittsburgh from 1961 to 2010 as a venue hosting concerts, rallies, sporting contests, and exhibitions, among many other events. Most notably, the Civic Arena, nicknamed the Igloo, was home to the Pittsburgh Penguins professional ice hockey team from 1967 to its close.

The only photographer licensed by the Sports and Exhibition Authority to have total access to the Civic Arena during its demolition, Aschkenas shot more than 10,000 photographs of the project. From wide-angle shots showing the pre-demolition Civic Arena among its surroundings, to close-up images of the seemingly mundane objects within, the photographs on display fully portray the iconic building during it demise.

In conjunction with the exhibition, Aschkenas is releasing a book under the same title: Arena: Remembering the Igloo. The book is available online through Amazon, Apple iTunes, and the Pittsburgh Penguins Foundation website. Containing more than 100 photographs, the book also collects people's memories of and experiences in the Civic Arena.

David Aschkenas has been a photographer for more than 30 years. His work has appeared in publications such as Time, Men's Health, Good Housekeeping, Stern, More, Marie Claire, PC World, Der Spiegel, Pittsburgh Quarterly, among others. Aschkenas's work is held in numerous collections, including the Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh, PA; The Minneapolis Institute of the Arts; University of Alaska Museum, Fairbanks, AK; The Polaroid Corporation; The Howard Heinz Endowment; and The A.W. Mellon Educational and Charitable Trust Foundation, Pittsburgh, PA.

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by Barry Kostrinsky