Portland art blog + news + exhibition reviews + galleries + contemporary northwest art

recent entries

Free Day at Portland Art Museum
Attack of the 50 ft tall Curator
Building to something
Dwelling Globally
ResonanCity + Ghosting + Seth Nehil at Apotheke Tonight!
The Sensualist: New Work by Eliza Fernand
NCECA Roundup (Part 1)
Around the web
Ultra Sam
Fourth Wednesday at Small A
Love in the Wild, Vicki Lynn Wilson at Blackfish
Future Academy at PSU

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Friday 03.31.06

Free Day at Portland Art Museum

Ernst Ludwig Kirchner's Dancers (1909) woodcut
(c) by Ingeborg & Dr. Wolfgang Henze-Ketterer, Wichtrach/Bern.

Not only has the Portland Art Museum snuck in a minor redesign of their website's front page (the old one was just terrible and so so creme brulee) they are open free of charge today , thanks to the generous support of the Lamb Baldwin Foundation and the Maybelle Clark Macdonald Fund. Hours 10 AM - 8:00 PM

I particularly like roaming the museum at night and you run into a lot of interesting people during those hours. For me nothing is better than taking in a good Anne Truitt, a Dan Flavin and the only Schnabel I have ever liked before a movie at the NW film center or Fox Theater (disclosure I am a board member of the Museum's Contemporary Art Council).

Definitely check out shows like Roxy Paine's PMU. It's a brilliant work from a few years ago that complicates notions of artistic production, authorship and notions of control vs. serendipity. Basically the artist built a machine which makes paintings according to the algorithms he programed into it. It's a very theatrical even funny process when running (like those plastic animal mold machines at zoos) and very stark and minimalist when it isn't.

Also check out what I consider to be the single best show I've ever seen at the Museum, From Anxiety to Ecstasy: Themes in German Expressionist Prints at the Gilkey Center. Now prints are often considered second tier to paintings for a reason but German expressionist prints are in a class all their own. The German Expressionists often used medieval woodblock printing and stark imagery to address the existential condition before anyone had even named it existentialism yet. Using the medieval to address the industrialized world has never been so successful done. It's still very edgy by today's standards and their social commentary really holds up with a beguiling mix of ugliness, exoticism, death and frustration. Just check out the names; George Grosz, Edvard Munch, Otto Meuller, Franz Marc, Max Pechstein, Erich Heckel and the best of the bunch, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner. Note, if you are a serious graphic designer you really shouldn't miss this.

This show was culled mostly from the permanent collection and PAM has unexpected strength here due to the late Gordon Gilkey's role in recovering stolen art in post WWII Germany.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 31, 2006 at 0:00 | Comments (0)


Thursday 03.30.06

Attack of the 50 ft tall Curator


This looks like a good flick about New York back when it was THE place the art world lived. Featuring; Warhol, Poons, de Kooning, Johns and yes a curator from the Metropolitan, Henry Geldzahler. Ever notice how artists still don't look to curators from past eras for inspiration?... this film should demonstrate why! See the trailer here.


DIRECTOR: Peter Rosen (US 2006)

Rosen's film documents the downtown New York pop art scene in the 1960s, as seen through the eyes of legendary Metropolitan Museum of Art curator Henry Geldzahler. A legend in his own mind, but also in the hearts of the artists whose works he championed, Geldzahler was instrumental in raising consciousness about the vibrancy of contemporary American art. His landmark exhibition "New York Painting and Sculpture 1940-1970" shaped not only the Met's future, but the art world's as well. Featuring Andy Warhol, Frank Stella, James Rosenquist, Larry Poons, David Hockney, Mark Di Suvero and many others, Rosen's film offers a provocative journey through a brash era.

NORTHWEST FILM CENTER - Whitsell Auditorium, Portland Art Museum

MAR 31 FRI 7PM, APR 1 SAT 7PM, APR 2 SUN 4:30 & 7PM

Admission: $7 General $6 PAM Members, Students, Seniors $4 Friends of the Film Center

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 30, 2006 at 1:00 | Comments (0)


Wednesday 03.29.06

Building to something

I came across this article of interest on Arts Journal, a developer is precollecting art for condo buyers in Toronto. In most ways it sounds horrible, especially if the developer doesn't have much of an eye but there is something interesting about it supporting the local art ecosystem.

Also, Brian Libby at Portland Architecture chimes in on Randy Gragg's take on the tram in the O. I've written on this before and how 15 million was a very unrealistic figure, but Gragg's point about the city of Portland's credibility being on the line with this public/private partnership is right on. Portland's biggest problem has always been one of follow through and the tram is highlighting the political grandstanding on all sides. It will get done but a reality check like Gragg's needed to be made. All interesting architecture creates debate and its looking like the tram fits the profile. It is kinda refreshing!

Last but not least the NTY's recently ran a story on local luminary, Brad Cloepfil's museum at One Columbus Circle in NYNY. There are some nice photos too, but there are more on Allied Works site.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 29, 2006 at 1:00 | Comments (2)


Tuesday 03.28.06

Dwelling Globally

Last week at PSU, Clementine Deliss was on hand to discuss two of her pet projects. Metronome, an ongoing printed publication, allowed Deliss to stop curating exhibitions while continuing the same kinds of critical explorations or, in her own words, to stay involved in research instead of service. For the tenth publication of Metronome, Deliss is teaming up with members of another project she initiated, Future Academy. This project, which has been three years in the running, has allowed Deliss to enter the university system in an informal way, creating a structure based on her own interests and the voluntary involvement of students rather than codified academic structures.

The next issue of Metronome, published in conjunction with Documenta 12, borrows its theme and format from the nearly thirty year old Philomath-based photocopied 'zine, "Dwelling Portably." Working closely with Oscar Tuazon and Marjorie Harlick, Deliss has been creating this issue while on location in Oregon, working from an RV and engaging in a half-assed attempt to meet the couple who runs "Dwelling Portably."

The ideas they explore are worthy of investigation—the notion of studio, risk, institutional structures, micro-savings, ecologies, translations and architecture as lifestyle. The bothersome part is their project wallows in self-imposed limitations and the futility of this project ever reaching the same level of practicality that "Dwelling Portably" achieves, which to me seems to undermine the lab-like nature of their inquiry. A few members of the crowd weren't quite convinced that "outing" the couple who runs "Dwelling Portably" to an international audience during Documenta 12 presented any interest, especially when even the small town postman, who works at the post office where the couple mails out their 'zine, claimed that he didn't know what they looked like. I was more concerned by the lack of acknowledgment about the parasitical nature of their activities, which depend on the very institutions (universities and international art venues alike) that they try to subvert. Despite my reservations, I am still curious to see what the collaboration between Metronome and Future Academy will bring. Tonight, we can see the debut of Metronome 10 for ourselves during the release party at PICA.

Metronome 10 release party • Tuesday, March 28 • 7 to 9p
PICA Resource Room • 224 NW 13th Ave. 3rd Floor • 503.242.1419

Posted by Katherine Bovee on March 28, 2006 at 9:35 | Comments (0)


ResonanCity + Ghosting + Seth Nehil at Apotheke Tonight!

Three experimental sound art pieces! Don't miss this rare experience tonight at 9 pm at Apotheke! The field of sound art though related to visual art remains autonomous, and traces an independent history as densely complex as the history of visual art.

ResonanCity is a live multimedia performance by Sara Kolster and Derek Holzer. It has been performed live internationally, notably at the Transmediale 05 festival in Berlin. Their Portland date is part of a limited North American engagement.

Both Sara and Derek find inspiration in the history of experimental cinema and electroacoustic music, as well as in contemporary video and microsound practices, and a variety of live sources such as Photographic film and found objects are used to generate the visions and sounds.

Seth Nehil presents a new piece for 6 Speakers.

Apotheke • Tuesday • March 28 • 9 pm • $5 Cover
4605 NE 13th Ave • Portland, OR • 97211
503 • 320 • 7512

Posted by Isaac Peterson on March 28, 2006 at 1:08 | Comments (1)


Monday 03.27.06

The Sensualist: New Work by Eliza Fernand

Tube Cloud

Tube Cloud hovers menacingly / peacefully in the center of Rake Gallery like a Rococo Man 'O War. Pink tendrils descend from the central mass and burst into fleshy, sequined tubercles. Tube Cloud is above a round cushion. When one understands the interactivity of the ceramics, it is easy to see that the artist intends the viewer to sit on the cushion amongst the pink tendrils and fleshy tubercles. The accidental motion of the sitter animates the tendrils and tubercles. One finds oneself as gently caressed as a clown fish by a sea anemone. One of the fragile tubercles has already broken.

The important temporal limitations of sensual experience have naturally led the artist into performance. Fernand's performances have thus far been held in non-gallery spaces (read more)...

Posted by Isaac Peterson on March 27, 2006 at 1:18 | Comments (0)


Friday 03.24.06

NCECA Roundup (Part 1)

The "paper" boats of Juana Valdes intrepidly navigate the waters of craft

The fact that the NCECA Conference brought several thousand people and over 100 ceramic-related art exhibitions to Portland for a period of four days in early March predictably elicited everything from enthusiasm to skepticism and indifference from Portlanders. Although the roots of Portland's craft tradition runs deep, it's not exactly at the forefront of the art scene here. The political and aesthetic radicalism that marked the Art & Craft Movement at the turn of the century has dwindled, and many now associate craft with fine (but not necessarily well-designed) objects...

Posted by Katherine Bovee on March 24, 2006 at 10:29 | Comments (2)


Wednesday 03.22.06

Around the web

It's been a busy week in local art news with the Biennial announcement, and both the Oregonian and WWEEK have chimed in ... even Artnet took notice. Expectations are high and there is a lot of pressure on Gately (welcome to Portland). Hmmmm might she have more room to work with than just the Collins gallery too, hmmmmm? (that will help with 34 artists) Also, it is nice that the WWEEK has decided to start regularly publishing art content again. It's bad for everyone in Portland when the WWEEK cedes the main cultural discussion in town to the O and it is good they are back in the game.

Elsewhere, it has seemed like blogs vs dead tree crit fest with Jerry Saltz blasting the New Yorker on MAN and Art.Blogging.LA educating Art on Paper about the nature of blogs. Also, chiming in on the Saltzflattening of the New Yorker, Todd Gibson makes a very nuanced case. This is all in addition to the PORT/ArtForum debate here on Red 76.

Even more elsewhere and much longer ago, scientists have reconstructed a much brighter hued picture of the Parthenon. Also, since we are getting all oldschool here you should check out Edward Winkleman's Michelangelo quiz, I'm guessing #4 is is the real deal.

Last but not least the Oregonian has a story on the proposed I-5 bridge. This is hugely important (not just because I love bridges) because the Portland-Vancouver metro area is experiencing booming population growth and the bridge is a major pragmatic and aesthetic statement about the negotiated directions that growth will take.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 22, 2006 at 22:36 | Comments (0)


Tuesday 03.21.06

Ultra Sam

Sam Adams, Portland's feel good City Commissioner, appears today on Ultra giving them the Q & A. After talking about chickens and sharing his photos, he makes an elusive reference to a forthcoming arthappy.org. Hmm.... this guy's always got a trick or two up his sleeve. I guess I'll just have to wait and see what it is this time. My art happy organization involves more funding for artist grants, way more art in Portland's public schools and a new contemporary arts space housing exhibitions and artist exchanges. I hope Sam's is thinking this direction, too.

Posted by Jennifer Armbrust on March 21, 2006 at 17:49 | Comments (0)


Fourth Wednesday at Small A


Tomorrow night, Small A Projects opens their latest exhibition, the solo show of Brooklyn-based artist Allyson Vieira. To borrow from the press release, "Vieira's work explores the formal and ideological connections between disparate historical periods including Periclean Greece, the Enlightenment, the American and French Revolutions and Minimalism. Using a palette of blue, red, and white, these works don't necessarily share a common Hellenic endpoint, but rather constellate around a common center that includes Euclid, Pericles, and Athena Polias." I couldn't have said it better myself. Also opening is a project by Portland-based Shawna Ferreira. Drop by to check out the digs and say hello to the artists.
Allyson Vieira, Works on Paper and Sculpture
Project by Shawna Ferreira, Oblivion's Everywhere Else
Opening Reception • Wednesday, March 22 • 6 to 9 pm
Small A Projects • 1430 SE Third Avenue • Tel. 503.234.7993

Posted by Jennifer Armbrust on March 21, 2006 at 17:20 | Comments (0)


Monday 03.20.06

Love in the Wild, Vicki Lynn Wilson at Blackfish


An installation of new work by Vicki Lynn Wilson at the Blackfish Gallery entitled Love in the Wild is fraught with complex tension. The work shifts easily though inexplicably between silly fairy tale narrative and images of predatory violence, while always returning to a single generative nexus: the American living room.

Wilson's cold, snowy, sparkly myth-scape is an allegorical environment distantly related to the frozen despair of Narnia under the influence of the White Queen: forever winter without Christmas.

As in the White Queen's Narnia, The freezing in Love in the Wild applies to time as well as temperature. Time no longer seems to progress, but eddies and compounds idly. The interaction of prey and predators (which also seem formed from glittering snow) becomes confounded in the absence of a timeline. Animals divide and replicate constructively, the aura of predatory menace becomes detached from a specific event and diffuses into the atmosphere itself. A hunting dog seems to divide through mitosis, becoming a diploid aggregate, the halves seamed together with bright red fabric scar tissue. (read more)...

Posted by Isaac Peterson on March 20, 2006 at 23:35 | Comments (0)


Sunday 03.19.06

Future Academy at PSU


PSU's Monday night lecture series is on hold until early April, after the next term commences. Fortunately, for those who are disturbed by this news, there will be a special lecture/presentation this Monday, same time, same place, featuring Clementine Deliss, Marjorie Harlick and Oscar Tuazon with Harrell Fletcher and Matthew Stadler.

"Future Academy will discuss mobile working environments, local institutions, and the long-running hippie survivalist zine 'Dwelling Portably,' published in Philomath, Oregon. Living and working out of a temporary, mobile publishing and video studio in a 1999 Tioga Arrow RV, Future Academy is preparing Metronome no. 10, the first magazine to be published in conjunction with Documenta 12. The premier of Metronome no. 10 will be held at PICA next weekend.

Spanning five continents, Future Academy is a student-led investigation into the art college of the future, whereby key questions are raised with regard to the architecture of future buildings; mobility and portable working environments; the content and form of the future library and archive; and new forms of interdisciplinary collaboration between informatics and art."

What to build is more important than where to build
An artists' talk presented by Future Academy
Monday, March 20th • 7 p
PSU 5th Avenue Cinema • 510 SW Hall St. Room 92 (on the corner of 5th & Hall)

Posted by Katherine Bovee on March 19, 2006 at 22:36 | Comments (0)


Saturday 03.18.06

PAM Announces Artists for 2006 Biennial

The hotly discussed and highly anticipated results are in. However, the Biennial exhibition opens in late July so you'll have to wait to see the goods. Congratulations to the selected artists!

The List...

Brad Adkins (Portland)
Marcy Adzich (Eugene)
Holly Andres (Portland)
Pat Boas (Beaverton)
Chandra Bocci (Portland)
Michael Brophy (Portland)
Benjamin Buswell (Portland)
Grace Carter and Holly Andres (Portland)
Matt Clark (Portland)
David Eckard (Portland)
Andrew Ellmaker and Mark Brandau (Portland)
Ty Ennis (Portland)
Anna Fidler (Portland)
Emily Ginsburg (Portland)
Heidi Preuss Grew (Salem)
Jesse Hayward (Portland)
Mark Hooper (Portland)
Jo Jackson (Portland)
Kristan Kennedy (Portland)
Zack Kircher (Portland)
K.C. Madsen (Portland)
Federico Nessi (Portland)
Lucinda Parker (Portland)
Matthew Picton (Ashland)
Brittany Powell (Portland)
Shawn Records (Portland)
Vanessa Renwick (Portland)
David Rosenak (Portland)
Storm Tharp (Portland)
Mariana Tres (Portland)
Laura Vandenburgh (Springfield)
Bill Will (Portland)
Amanda Wojick (Eugene)

According to the exhibition curator, Jennifer Gately, "This year's Biennial is dynamically different from past exhibitions with its range of mediums and intentions. It includes artists that represent a strong respect for history, and hints at shades of the future. As with any biennial, it presents an opportunity to explore, debate, and reflect upon the current state of visual art in Oregon." Let the discussions begin...

Posted by Jennifer Armbrust on March 18, 2006 at 12:16 | Comments (1)


Laundry Lecture: Bonnie Fortune

Tonight Red76 and Homeland join forces to offer a Laundry Lecture for Chicago-based artist Bonnie Fortune. Bonnie will be talking about her recent projects Free Walking, In the Weather, and introducing her latest interactive social art collaboration, Dormant. A Q & A will follow the talk. Bonnie will also be washing a load of socks and underwear, you are encouraged to bring your own laundry, too. Bonnie is in town thanks to Homeland's new artist-in-residency program.
Saturday, March 18th • 6pm
F & I U Wash • 28th SE (btw. Burnside and Ankeny)

Posted by Jennifer Armbrust on March 18, 2006 at 10:27 | Comments (0)


Friday 03.17.06

ArtForum's Slant on Red 76's Ghosttown


It is swell that the March 2006 issue of ArtForum has a 2 page article on Red 76's Ghosttown project in Portland but it excludes some important facts, while projecting a...

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 17, 2006 at 22:32 | Comments (10)


Wednesday 03.15.06

Chairman of the bored

Office chairs have such a mystique, are absolutely loaded with ennui and now Portland's Daniel Peterson brings us this gem.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 15, 2006 at 0:32 | Comments (1)


Tuesday 03.14.06

Building and Questioning at Ground Zero

The New York Times has a piece on the World Trade Center site today. Let's just say the current design for the Freedom Tower is a massive failure in imagination and hopefully never gets built. If we as a nation want a symbolic tower, then let's make a symbolic tower not an office building. It's a false start and design by comittee is useless for such an important site.

But this piece in the New Yorker by Paul Goldberger shows how Herzog & de Meuron have been creating interesting buildings that make one question their surroundings. This engagement of uncertainty is what is completely missing from the current Freedom Tower design...unless you want to count the uncertainty of funding. A good idea will find a way to happen and maybe it's wishful thinking but this WTC design looks like it's finding a way to die.

*Update: looks like the deal is going south, let's hope it takes the design with it (then again these deals have a way of being resusicated).

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 14, 2006 at 0:31 | Comments (0)


Monday 03.13.06

Fallen debut


Tonight at Holocene, local experimental filmmaker Ryan Jeffery will be screening his most recent work, Fallen. Word is the film was just completed yesterday so it's hot off the splicer. The film is part of Ethan Rose's record release party, featuring music by Rose as the score. The seven minute piece stands as a sort of modern myth or creation story, exploring the advent of technology in society. A key element of the film is a machine designed in collaboration with Kari Merkl, who actually constructed the sculpture. Between Jeffery's mastery of the moving image, Rose's aural delights and Merkl's innovative and visionary construction, the film is definitely worth a look-see.
Ethan Rose/Small Sails Vinyl Release Party featuring Ryan Jeffery and Unrecognizable Now
Holocene • 1001 SE Morrison • 8 pm • $4

Posted by Jennifer Armbrust on March 13, 2006 at 9:35 | Comments (0)


Frédéric Paul Lecture at PSU


Tonight's PSU Monday night lecture series will feature Frédéric Paul, writer and curator at Domaine de Kerguéhennec, a contemporary art center in Brittany, France. Paul has worked on exhibitions and publications for artists including Claude Closky, Richard Artschwager, David Shrigley and Beatriz Milhazes. This fall, the center will present a solo exhibition by Harrell Fletcher, who completed a residency there in 2005.

Monday, March 13th • 7 p
PSU 5th Avenue Cinema • 510 SW Hall St. Room 92 (on the corner of 5th & Hall)
Sponsored in part by PICA, PNCA, and Reed College

Posted by Katherine Bovee on March 13, 2006 at 8:03 | Comments (0)


Sunday 03.12.06

Saltz of the earth

Tyler over at MAN has a scoop on one of the finalists for the Pulitzer Prize in Critiscism, namely Jerry Saltz. Now I must admit Jerry embarassed the living hell out of me when he said a lot of nice things a few years ago so Im biased, but who else deserves it more? He beats the pavement, has an enormous appetite/love for art and writes polarizing prose in a field where you get more perks if you simply write Pangloss approved art-marketing drivel. Giving it to yet another castrated art historian or some art world mandarin curator is the wrong idea (yet it often happens). Critiscism should be rewarded for it's thoughtful provocation.

What's more Saltz is a New York critic who looks hard at other places and has even had a huge impact on places as remote as Portland with it's boiling scene. He has an eye and a pen and of course he isn't always right. Still, even when he's off he is meaningful and there is no better way to judge a critic than that. He's the most relevant art critic working today.

Read this and tell me if I'm wrong?

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 12, 2006 at 22:05 | Comments (0)


Saturday 03.11.06

Oregon Biennial 2006 update

Rejection letters for the 2006 Oregon Biennial are out and artists in the Portland area received them today (may take a few days depending where you are). If you didn't receive a rejection letter that's a good sign but doesn't insure you are in. Through our sources we hear the final list will be published in a few weeks.

I find it pointless to publish a list of rejections right now (but you can post comments). Still, the list of who isn't in will surprise some. Although we have known for several weeks that obvious art stars who have already been in biennials didn't receive studio visits. I think that's fine, new blood I say, put the spotlight where it can do some good. Besides, the city is full of a staggering amount of talent. Also, the museum has to prove its relevance to the boiling contemporary art scene here and just emphasizing the big players gives shows like this an air of stale inevitability. The museum can't afford that and still make a bid for relevance.

Really, another group survey show doesn't help anyone who is already a big deal and hopefully this new Biennial will push the galleries to really take stock of their rosters and be more adventurous.

There is some new news though; the next biennial in 2008 will combine both invitations and artist submissions (this is really the only way to go). This is important since the actual # of submissions is down this year (over 760). The last one was pushing 1000. Possible reasons for the decline are the requirement of antiquated slides (the museum has hopes for digital submissions in 2008), rather successful artists being annoyed by the rejection process and the intense unpopularity of the last biennial (it did have some good work but didn't reflect the energy of the scene). The 2006 Oregon Biennial needs to address and add to the discussion in order to be relevant to a scene that is already getting international attention (it looks like it may do just that but the proof is in the pudding). As soon as the final list is available we will let you know.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 11, 2006 at 17:46 | Comments (5)


Friday 03.10.06

In Case You Somehow Forgot...

This weekend, gallery fair madness resumes in NYC with the Armory Show and spin-off fairs. ArtInfo has somehow found me and added me to their mailing list, keeping me fully abreast of sales stats and insider gossip. You too can join in the by-proxy fun on their website with their frequent Fair Reports. Rumor has it the mercury topped off today at 70 degrees in the Big Apple and fair goers were traipsing around in sundresses. That sure beats the snow/slush/rain/wind we've been forced to endure here!

If you're in Manhattan for the event, feel free to leave your impressions in the comments.

Posted by Jennifer Armbrust on March 10, 2006 at 17:42 | Comments (0)


New Trajectories I: Relocations, the Ovitz Family Collection (Part 2)

L to R works by: Stephan Thiel, David Thorpe, Eric Schmidt, Richard Prince and Tim Eitel

Tommorow is the last day of this show at Reed College, read more for part 2 of my review...

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 10, 2006 at 0:00 | Comments (0)


Thursday 03.09.06

Changes in the Pearl


Changes are underway in the North Park blocks, and it's not just another condo or restaurant. DK Row reports in Thursday's Oregonian on the transformation of the former Daisy Kingdom building, which is being developed by Jim Winkler in order to provide a place for several of Portland's prominent galleries to buy their own property in the Pearl. With the new 9th and Flanders hub created after Pulliam Deffenbaugh, PDX and Elizabeth Leach all secured new spaces around this corner, the Pearl District has been able to keep its claim as Portland's art hot spot. Winkler's new development on 8th & Davis will further expand the Pearl's eastern borders, creating a link between the Pearl District and younger Chinatown galleries like Everett Station Lofts, Motel, Compound Gallery and Portland Art Center. Contemporary Crafts Museum & Gallery, relocating from its current location on Corbett Avenue, will occupy the largest space in the new building. Others include photography gallery Blue Sky, a new Augen satellite space, Froelick gallery and a new gallery owned by Charles A. Hartman, who recently moved from San Francisco. Galleries are in the final stages of purchase agreements and the center is expected to open in spring 2007.

Posted by Katherine Bovee on March 09, 2006 at 11:07 | Comments (3)


Tuesday 03.07.06

Olaf Breuning's "Group" in the Elizabeth Leach Gallery Video Window by MK Guth

Still from Olaf Breuning's 2001 video "Group"

Video Window is a forum for presenting different video works by national, international and regional artists. Each month a new video will be presented in the outside window of the Elizabeth Leach Gallery on opening night (for the First Thursday crowds), after which they will move to a monitor in the gallery for the duration of the month.

Olaf Breuning's not to be missed video, "Group", will be my last selection for video window. "Group" documents the metamorphosis of bearded water drenched surf Vikings into Lord of the Flies Javamen. The characters in the video evolve and de-evolve, combining modern day camping van society with prehistoric antics. Breuning's highly constructed universes employ recognizable cultural cliches but amplifies and explodes them through his bizarre reconstructions and simulations. "Group" has the look of a National Geographic documentary on acid. This is the first time Olaf Breuning's work has ever been exhibited in Portland.

Since this is my last month with Video Window I want to say I have enjoyed having the opportunity to present video works I admire by artists, Alix Pearlstein, David Eckard, Shawna Ferreira, Federico Nessi and Olaf Breuning. For those of you who have tuned in, Thanks! For those who have yet to visit Video Window come on by.

April welcomes Matt McCormick to Video Window. Matt McCormick is a filmmaker who has directed several award winning films and music videos over the past ten years. He is also the founder of Peripheral Produce, an internationally recognized video distribution label specializing in short experimental work, and the director of the Portland Documentary and experimental Film Festival, Portland's premiere event for experimental, documentary, and otherwise obscure contemporary cinema. The PDX Film Festival will be running from April 26 - 30

Window of Elizabeth Leach Gallery • 417 N.W. 9th Ave • Portland, OR 97204 • Tel: 503 • 224 • 0324

Posted by Guest on March 07, 2006 at 22:31 | Comments (1)


Marina Abramovic at Reed

Reed College and PICA bring acclaimed performance and installation artist Marina Abramovic to Portland.


Marina Abramovic, Balkan Erotic Epic (detail) 2005 video projection, dimensions variable

Laurie Anderson describes Abramovic's work in Bomb Magazine:

"...Marina can actually transform and direct thoughts. She understands and uses the ecstatic. And she creates transformation out of the simplest materials, featuring her own body. An intensely physical person, she combines it with the spiritual in a completely unique way."

Abramovic will give a free public lecture tonight (March 7) at 7pm at the Vollum Lecture Hall at Reed College. Seating is limited so be sure to show up early!

Posted by Isaac Peterson on March 07, 2006 at 2:39 | Comments (4)


Monday 03.06.06

Daniel Barron debuts at Pushdot Studio

Daniel Barron's Milton

Daniel Barron's In he Knee of the Curve at Pushdot Studio is one of the more impressive and odd rookie art shows I've seen in a while. This wipes the floor with a lot of the tamer photographic fare I often see in galleries and stumbling across it on First Thursday made the...

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 06, 2006 at 20:56 | Comments (0)


Simparch lecture at PSU


Steven Badgett, who comprises one half of collaborative effort Simparch, will lecture at PSU later today. Badgett has been collaborating with Matt Lynch as Simparch for about ten years, but the pair broke into international notoriety with Freebasin. A fully functional skate bowl re-created within the gallery space, Freebasin was the key piece in Deitch Project's defining skate-culture-as-art exhibition, Session the Bowl, in 2002, and has also been exhibited at the Tate and Documenta XI. Simparch has also exhibted at the 2004 Whitney Biennial, The Renaissance Society, The Wexner and InSITE.

Monday, March 6th • 7 p PSU 5th Avenue Cinema • 510 SW Hall St. Room 92 (on the corner of 5th & Hall)
Sponsored in part by PICA, PNCA, and Reed College

Posted by Katherine Bovee on March 06, 2006 at 12:07 | Comments (0)


Sunday 03.05.06

It's soooo Whitney...

I haven't been able to get too caught up in the latest Whitney Biennial... mainly because is seems like such old news after Miami (and nowhere near as challenging). Also, because I live in Portland the US city most likely to join the EU it's a bit retrograde (we are obsessed with not making the same mistakes the rest of the country have made already).

If you are still curious Jerry Saltz gives his take here and Michael Kimmelman's take is somewhat helpful as well in the NYT's (with some pictures). I think the curators were right to try and bust up the hoard of less than toothy, lets giggle while Rome burns art... the stuff that the fairs and the Greater New York show have promulgated. Still, you can't overhaul a broken system (an increasingly predictable system?) by sampling from the same artists that produced the impasse with less than toothy critiques (weak ass pseudonyms, or masquerading as a gallery aren't enough, wasnt that 2002 and didn't Forcefield do it better?). I think Adrian Searle's take on the Tate Triennial illustrates the wall that has been hit even more clearly (but wasn't that wall clearly illustrated by the Stuckists? no they were entertaining and even older news). Maybe museum's just can't institutionalize radical change anymore with 'ennials in this very porous and communication heavy art world?

I decided to skip the WB 06 after doing the Art Basel Miami art junket (I've seen a lot of its work or stuff like it elsewhere already). For me the best way to look at this WB is to think about its recent predecessors, both of which seemed at least galvanizing. The 2002 biennial infuriated people because it wasn't about New York, the 2004 one pleased people committed to New York because it seemed to support the effervescent New York market. Jerry Saltz was right in abstaining from praise, Schjeldahl acted relieved that he was in the right city (a question he seems to bring up frequently). Problem is, there is no one city anymore and the WB 06 seems to acknowledge that. The other problem is that conclusion isn't very provocative... the art fairs and the Greater New York show proved this point many moons ago. What's more the Uncertain States Of America show last fall ate its lunch. Ok we have an art impasse, isn't it time we stop curating shows about the impasse?

*update: Todd Gibson's Haiku and his earlier observation. Also, show on the road and Bloggy check in... I still don't feel anything but ennui about this. If you dont travel much I guess it might be worthwhile.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 05, 2006 at 22:33 | Comments (0)


Saturday 03.04.06

Vicki Lynn Wilson Performance at Blackfish


Tonight, Vicki Lynn Wilson will activate her fantastical installation at Blackfish with a performance. The highlight of her installation, Love in the Wild, is hybrid appliance / animal sculptures. Further interactions between the natural world and the domestic sphere will take place as she enacts her performance within the white-clad space.

Performance • Saturday, March 4th, 7p
Blackfish Gallery • 420 NW Ninth Ave • 503.224.2634

Posted by Katherine Bovee on March 04, 2006 at 12:53 | Comments (0)


Friday 03.03.06

First Friday March


Heaven & Earth • Jim Lommassonphotography Lommasson has traveled from Churches to Museums, artists' studios, outdoor revivals, and beyond in search of the various shapes Faith takes in our contemporary environment. New American Art Union • 922 SE Ankeny Street PDX 97214 • 503-231-8294. Opening Reception: March 3. Show ends March 26, 2006. Read on...

Posted by Nicky Kriara on March 03, 2006 at 12:51 | Comments (0)


Thursday 03.02.06

Portland art is everywhere part deux

Portlanders are showing all over the planet this weekend, so once again one of the strongest art scenes in the country is coming to you so you can see some of the buzz elsewhere.

At Massachusetts' Fuller Museum, Hillary Pfeifer's s' warm looks like...

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 02, 2006 at 22:49 | Comments (0)


Kaja Silverman Lecture at PAM


This Sunday, Kaja Silverman's lecture will continue the Critical Voices series at the Portland Art Museum. Programmed in conjunction with the opening of the Jubitz last fall, this series is bringing a list of notable thinkers to town, including critic Arthur Danto last fall and MoMA curator John Elderfield next week. A film and rhetoric studies professor at Berkeley, Silverman has written extensively on feminist theory, psychoanalysis, film theory, sexuality and time-based visual art. She is working on two books, including one on photography that provides the starting point for her lecture, entitled Photography as a Tool for Art in the 20th Century and Beyond.

Advanced reservations are recommended: 503.226.0973

Lecture •Sunday, March 5th • 2 p Whitsell Auditorium • Portland Art Museum • 1219 SW Park Ave • 503.226.0973
Admission: $15 General (includes entry into exhibitions), Free for members

Posted by Katherine Bovee on March 02, 2006 at 7:04 | Comments (0)


Wednesday 03.01.06

First Thursday March

Windmill AK47 w-clogs, Charles Kraft at Gallery 114

NCECA 2006
Explorations and Navigations: The Resonance of Place
If it seems as though there is an overwhelming amount of ceramic art in the galleries across town this month, it's because NCECA is here. Portland is hosting the 4oth Annual Conference for the National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts (NCECA). The Oregon Convention Center will be the central location for demonstrations, educational panels, lectures, performances, panels, and lots and lots of clay. Aside from the city being flooded with an anticipated 4,000+ ceramic enthusiasts, over 100 galleries, museums, and exhibition spaces will be featuring ceramic work throughout March. The conference runs from March 8-11 and many galleries have First Thursday openings prior to the event. For a complete listing of NCECA exhibitions, click here. Read on...

Posted by Nicky Kriara on March 01, 2006 at 22:46 | Comments (5)

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