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Dominique Luster

Teenie Harris Archivist
Carnegie Museum of Art


  

  • Name: Dominique Luster
  • Where I'm From: Louisville, Ky.
  • Where I Live: Edgewood
  • Education:
    University of Kentucky, B.A. in Theater Design & Technology; University of Pittsburgh, Master’s degree in Library Science, Archives & Information Science
  • Company:
    Carnegie Museum of Art



  
“I found a lot of commonalities between Pittsburgh and Louisville. Both are blue-collar towns of real hard-working families.”

Originally from the “easy-going, middle-class town” of Louisville, Ky., Dominique made her way to Pittsburgh to pursue a master’s degree in library sciences from the University of Pittsburgh.

Rich in culture and history, Pittsburgh was a golden choice for Dominique, her inquisitiveness and creativity leading her to a job at the Carnegie Museum of Art. 

There she explores, preserves and exhibits the nearly 80,000 photographs by Hill District native Charles “Teenie” Harris. From 1935 through 1975, Harris chronicled the culture and experience of the city’s black community for the Pittsburgh Courier, a newspaper that was circulated to African American communities around the country. In addition to photo essays of daily life, Harris captured celebrities who visited the city and the Negro League baseball players of the Homestead Grays and Pittsburgh Crawfords. 

Dominique says the best part of her job is the community programing embedded in the core objectives of the museum. She facilitates discussions and tours with youth and community residents, and builds partnerships and relationships with local community groups such as the August Wilson Center, the Boys and Girls Club, the Homewood Children’s Village and others.

When not diving into archival videos and photos or interviewing Pittsburgh natives, Dominique works on various projects with professional associations. She is a member of the Urban League Young Professionals group and the YWCA of Greater Pittsburgh Young Leaders Board – networks that inform her exploration of the city. “I found a lot of commonalities between Pittsburgh and Louisville. Both are blue-collar towns of real hard-working families.”

Dominique recently moved to the quaint borough of Edgewood, but often visits the neighboring town of Wilkinsburg, where she previously lived. From food truck Wednesdays to the growing small business district, Dominique “loves the culture in Wilkinsburg.

“Every neighborhood needs a great cafe, and I have purchased countless teas at Biddle’s Escape. And, if you haven’t been to Salvatore’s Pizza on Penn Avenue for trivia night, it is a must!”

On the weekends, you can find Dominique walking the trails of Frick Park, enjoying hot yoga at Yoga Flow in Shadyside, meeting up with friends for brunch at her favorite spots – Square Café in Regent Square and The Everyday Café in Homewood – or exploring the many neighborhood flea markets, particularly in Regent Square, Point Breeze and the North Side’s Mexican War Streets.

“I’m always up to attend concerts and shows, game nights throughout the city, and brunch! Pittsburgh is a great town for brunch.”