Adda Coffee and Tea House owner supports artists with new space in Sharpsburg

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Photo: Abby Warhola/Courtesy The Warhol

Sukanta Nag, founder of Atithi Studios

Sharpsburg’s art scene has really started to take off in recent years, with people visiting the neighborhood to check out its growing selection of galleries, restaurants, and shops. Atithi Studios added to this list, and the community will be welcomed into the space with an official grand opening later this month.

Located at 1020 N. Canal Street, the three-story, 3,500-square-foot multi-purpose venue serves as an art gallery, exhibition hall, and community venue for event rentals. It also functions as a coworking space and has a podcast studio, among other amenities.

Atithi will debut on Saturday July 9 with an open house that also includes local food, refreshments and entertainment. From Thursday July 14, Atithi will be open from Thursday to Sunday. from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., with performances that “will feature a wide range of leading and emerging local artists,” according to a press release.

A article by NEXTpittsburgh says Atithi opened in November 2021, but has not been open to the public with regular opening hours. Atithi will also hold regular workshops and programs open to the public, one of which will focus on “professional training for the arts community, such as financial planning and marketing basics.”

Atithi’s stated goal is to “create a collaborative hub for artists of all backgrounds and act as a gathering space for the Sharpsburg and tri-boro community”, serving as a “safe and inclusive environment that offers 11 artist studios for rent, as well as events, space rentals and coworking, workshops and exhibition opportunities to help artists hone and develop their skills.

“Atithi goes beyond just creating art, it’s about building relationships and developing skills to help our community members achieve their dreams, whether it’s becoming a full-time artist or continue to hone their craft in a safe and supportive environment,” Corey says. Ochai, a Braddock-born painter and longtime Sharpsburg resident who serves as the Atithi Community Ambassador.

Atithi is the latest venture from Sukanta Nag, a Bangladeshi native who moved to the Pittsburgh area more than 25 years ago and currently owns Adda Coffee and Tea House, which has multiple locations. As explained on the venue’s website, “Atithi” translates to “guest” in Bengali and is an ode to Rabindranath Tagore’s story of “a boy who chooses the life of a wanderer.”

Although the move from running cafes to opening a multi-purpose art space might seem like a leap, Nag has experience in the field. In 2021, the Andy Warhol Museum announced that Nag had been added to its advisory board. At the time, he was already serving on the board’s development committee, according to a press release.

“We want to build a more connected community of artists here in Pittsburgh,” says Nag. “We hope that the Atithi collaborative space can allow artists to connect and share their unique perspectives to amplify each other and their own stories through conversation and collaboration.”

Atithi Studios. 1020 N. Canal Street, Sharpsburg.

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