The Mattress Factory is recognized as a leader in site-specific, contemporary art. It's notorious for pushing both artist and viewer boundaries by pioneering the development of alternative art forms through site-specific installations, video, and performance art. Artists receive unparalleled support from the Mattress Factory while working in residence which often results in remarkable artwork that propels the artist’s career and significantly influences contemporary art. The exhibitions present works by critically-acclaimed regional, national, and international artists. Artists originally founded the Mattress Factory in 1977 to support artists working in residence and this brought new energy and culture to the city's North Side, inhabiting previously abandoned buildings to make the neighborhood a more attractive place to visit in Pittsburgh.