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Kenton Firehouse Sale
First Friday Picks for December
Damien Hirst at The Portland Art Museum
Doing A Lot Of Justice: Thom Mayne's Wayne L. Morse Courthouse in Eugene
Cloepfil has it Still
Jeanne C. Finley at PSU
Weimar Litmus Test & Figurative Art
Holidays Are For...Applying!
Existentialism, Advertising and Toast?
Tom Cramer at Laura Russo
Marc Horowitz at PSU
You can dance if you want to

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Thursday 11.30.06

Kenton Firehouse Sale

Work by Hilary Pfeifer

Avoid the hassle of the mall this holiday season and instead support some very talented artists. The third annual Kenton Firehouse Sale is this Saturday Dec. 2. Juried this year by Namita Wiggers, curator for Contemporary Craft Museum and Gallery and Portland artist Marie Watt, the one day sale features a range of work including fuzzy ornaments, felted wearables, and simple but sexy jewelry. Artists participating in the sale this year: Cristina Aucone, Tierney Brachear,Clare Carpenter, Tripper Dungan, Al Flory, Julie Fulkerson, Margaret Gardner, Shelly Hedges, Junko Iijima, Madoka Ito, Hilary Pfeifer, Suzy Root, Rebecca Scheer, and LeBrie Rich. Shop and be merry.
Kenton Firehouse Sale
Saturday, Dec. 2 • 11a-6p
8105 N. Brandon St. • Portland, OR

Posted by Jenene Nagy on November 30, 2006 at 19:39 | Comments (0)


First Friday Picks for December

First Friday is upon us!

Bruce Conkle photographed by Marne Lucas

Sitting City: Portland Artist Portraits by Marne Lucas promises to be a December highlight. These seventeen images of prominent locals artists hint at the both the moments of joy and bouts of melancholy that are part and parcel of the imaginatively lived life. Her casually sophisticated portraits suggest empathetic identification with her subjects, as in this strange, sweet shot of Bruce Conkle simultaneously revealing his inner child and inner monster. Also showing this month at Mark Woolley's newly consolidated home at the Wonder Ballroom location: Only For Seeing, new drawings and watercolors by Arnold Pander and Denizens: Screenprints and Drawings by Casey Burns.
Opening Reception • 6-9:30pm • Dec.1-30
Mark Woolley Gallery • 128 N.E. Russell (near MLK) at the Wonder Ballroom • T. 503.284.3636

Posted by Jessica Bromer on November 30, 2006 at 7:32 | Comments (0)


Wednesday 11.29.06

Damien Hirst at The Portland Art Museum

Damien Hirst Autopsy with Sliced Human Brain 2004

So what is the next show after the current Pierre Huyghe video at the Portland Art Museum's Miller-Meigs endowed room in the Jubtiz Center? You may have heard of him, it is Damien Hirst (one of my all-time favorite artists and probably one of the most loved/hated people in the history of art). He's obsessed with death, was generous enough to help an entire group of Young Britsih Artists become successful and is the master of presentation, having worked as an gallery installer before he became famous. Hirst is also notable as the first major artist since Picasso to control his own market. In a time where the market controls everything, this is yet another example of how perceptive Hirst is.

This is a rare solo US museum show for Hirst, who has avoided the museum blockbuster machine, preferring to make his own weather in out of the way places. Show opens January 13.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on November 29, 2006 at 11:25 | Comments (2)


Monday 11.27.06

Doing A Lot Of Justice: Thom Mayne's Wayne L. Morse Courthouse in Eugene


The new Wayne L. Morse Federal Courthouse, designed by Thom Mayne, is without a doubt the hottest new building in Oregon and yes it's in Eugene, not Portland (insert envy here). It opens to the public on December 1st.

Still, the mind swims with two curious incongruities:

1) Huh, a hot new courthouse… is that possible?... (much more)

Posted by Jeff Jahn on November 27, 2006 at 22:59 | Comments (2)


Cloepfil has it Still

Tyler at MAN reports that Portland's "starchitect" Brad Cloepfil will be designing the new Clyfford Still Museum in Denver. Cloepfil has his light and airy side (new Seattle Art Museum, PDX Contemporary Art) and a heavier side that does wonders with concrete (Weiden + Kennedy headquarters). Still, like a lot of AbEx painters liked to present a kind of life and death drama in his work so Cloepfil's earthy/heavy and airy light should complement the artist's dichotomies well.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on November 27, 2006 at 12:31 | Comments (0)


Sunday 11.26.06

Jeanne C. Finley at PSU


The PSU Monday Night MFA lecture series continues with a talk by experimental film producer, artist and CCA professor Jeanne Finley. Working with diverse subject matter - including an account of an American-Russian matchmaking trip, a young girl's experiences at a Baptist youth retreat, the story of a former Ku Klux Klan Grand Dragon and narratives from two Muslim women living in Instanbul - Finley returns again and again to the documentary form to explore the relationship between individual identity, cultural forces and the forms of media through which these experiences are mediated...

Lecture · Monday, November 27th · 8:15 p
PSU 5th Avenue Cinema · 510 SW Hall St. Room 92 (on the corner of 5th & Hall)
Funded in part by PICA, PNCA, Reed College, Lewis & Clark College and The Affair at the Jupiter Hotel

Posted by Katherine Bovee on November 26, 2006 at 15:30 | Comments (0)


Friday 11.24.06

Weimar Litmus Test & Figurative Art

Self-Portrait with Champagne Glass, 1919
Max Beckmann (German, 1884-1950)
Oil on canvas; 25 9/16 x 21 7/8 in. (65 x 55.5 cm)
Private collection, courtesy W. Wittrock, Berlin

In the NYT's Roberta Smith had a timely review of the "Glitter and Doom" show at the Metropolitan Museum. The focus on the anxiety present in the New Objectivity movement's artists like Otto Dix and Max Beckmann is absolutely in step with the mood of today. Still, one would have to stifle a chuckle in order to compare the anxieties found in Cecily Brown and Dana Schutz to that of Dix and Beckmann (and I like Brown and Schutz). The difference, Weimar Germany had just come off of WWI and the US's war in Iraq doesn't have the same urgency, though we are in a time of decadence and wealth while a smaller scale war of attrition rages. Good that the Metropolitan put this on, with the Miami Art fairs coming up this seems like a kind of cultural litmus test. Where is our version of brutal honesty? It definitely isn't Pierre Huyghe, who has a purosefully theatrical slight of hand that's been big ever since Matthew Barney. Sure Beckmann is theatrical too, but it is infinitely more honest than nearly everything Ive seen lately. Today good intentions and entertainment seem to be a substitute for difficult critiques and self-reflexive questioning?

On to someone who could use a huge dose of Otto Dix's depth, Portlander Ty Ennis (who was reviewed on PORT a few weeks ago) has spawned a hilarious unauthorized biography and a flux 7 out on the PDX blogosphere. Catch the show tomorrow on its last day to gauge the fuss (correction Dec 10th is the last day). Ennis is a talented artist in search of stronger subject matter, though according to the flux 7 he stands by it. Good on him, let's see if he gets something from the response he's received for this show, the criticism has been valid.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on November 24, 2006 at 17:16 | Comments (18)


Tuesday 11.21.06

Holidays Are For...Applying!

After you feast this weekend, ponder these exciting opportunities...(more)

Posted by Jenene Nagy on November 21, 2006 at 21:12 | Comments (0)


Existentialism, Advertising and Toast?

I noticed this same thing and I enjoyed how the Nissan ad defanged "Breadface" by making it a leisurely piece of toast in a chair. Let's face it (oh endless puns?), an endpiece for a loaf of bread by itself is more existential than toast... but I never would have thought about that except for Nissan's approximation of Matt Johnson's art. Also, Tyler cracks me up with his, "How hipster! How clever! Because gosh, who wouldn't want to live out of a mid-level Japanese car?" The hipster cars in Portland tend to be old biodiesel ready Mercedes, any Volvo but a brand new one, Ford Festivas and the ever popular "no car" ride a bike/Max train option. So, unless Nissan can make an old European automobile they ain't gonna hit this demographic.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on November 21, 2006 at 11:22 | Comments (5)


Monday 11.20.06

Tom Cramer at Laura Russo


By now many collectors have received announcements that Tom Cramer, arguably the city's artist laureate, has joined forces with the venerable Laura Russo Gallery, the now (as ever) undisputed leader in historical Northwest artists. This makes a lot of sense. Tom (a good friend who left his previous gallery over 8 months ago) is probably the best selling artist in Portland and I've known about this for a very long time. Tom is particularity important since he is the link between the pre-90's art scene in Portland and the current one... I see it as one contiguous cloth and Cramer's take no prisoners approach to the sublime, kitsch and the ancient art of woodcarving make him pretty unique.

This is the first major artist shift for the Laura Russo Gallery since Henk Pander joined the stable a few years ago and an exciting development. It is a great thing as the Russo gallery just celebrated its impressive 20th anniversary (Liz Leach just celebrated her 25th on the 11th) and what I like about Russo's gallery is their no-nonsense seriousness. What other gallery in the Pacific Northwest represents the estates of so many artists? In art the follow-through is very important. Now with Mel Katz, Francis Celentano, Lucinda Parker, Gregory Grenon, Robert Colescott, Henk Pander and Michael Brophy, Cramer only adds to the most mature stable of artists in Portland while adding a dash of flash.

The announcement card indicates that he has a one-person show scheduled for October 2007 (Ive seen some of the work, he just keeps getting better).

Posted by Jeff Jahn on November 20, 2006 at 11:04 | Comments (1)


Sunday 11.19.06

Marc Horowitz at PSU


You have two chances to see this week's PSU Monday Night Lecture series guest. Los Angeles-based artist Marc Horowitz will lead a free public workshop at PSU on Monday at 1pm and will present a lecture later that evening. Horowitz is an SFAI grad, a funny guy and an artist whose "social research" often teeters on the border between conceptual art and publicity stunt. In 2004, he gained notariety by scrawling "Dinner w/ Marc", along with his personal cell phone number, on a white board in the set of a Crate and Barrel photo shoot. The catalogs were distributed and Horowitz not only received several thousand of phone calls, but also caught the attention of the mass media. Other projects have included an Errand Feasibility Study, in which Horowitz rode a pack mule through San Francisco while running his daily errands. In 2004, the artist ran a 1500-foot extention cord from his kitchen to a nearby park each Saturday, providing power for his coffee pot so that he could serve passers-by free coffee...

Free public workshop · Monday, November 20th · 1p
PSU Art Building · 2000 SW 5th Ave

Lecture · Monday, November 20th · 8:15 p
PSU 5th Avenue Cinema · 510 SW Hall St. Room 92 (on the corner of 5th & Hall)
Funded in part by PICA, PNCA, Reed College, Lewis & Clark College and The Affair at the Jupiter Hotel

Posted by Katherine Bovee on November 19, 2006 at 16:39 | Comments (0)


Thursday 11.16.06

You can dance if you want to


PORT strongly advocates automotive safety. All too often, we find ourselves surrounded by drivers laboring under the false impression that commonsense precautions, like buckling up and respecting posted speed limits, are uncool. Luckily, some of the brightest lights of the local art community have teamed up to dispel this myth with a one-day event bound to show safety-haters that road respect isn't just prudent; it's also hip and happening.

On Saturday, November 18th, Joe Macca, Ryan Wilson Paulson and AmyEllen Flatchested Mama Trefsger will host Safety Dance, an event/exhibition of artwork created around the theme of Fluorescent (Safety) Orange. The following artists will contribute work to the "Porch Gallery": Brad Adkins, Brenden Clenaghen, Arcy Douglas, Jessica Eastburn, Ellen George, Jesse Hayward, Scott Hensala, Walter Lee, Joe Macca, Tim Nickodemus, Ryan Wilson Paulsen, Stephanie Robison, Adam Sorensen and Sean Sterling.

Says Macca, "Safety Dance is a one-day event intended to raise awareness in the neighborhood about the speeding on SE 41st avenue between Holgate and Steele. It's a 25 mph residential zone, but people drive 40 mph. The goal of our event is to generate interest in the neighborhood to permanently slow the traffic down. If you live on 41st and are as irritated as me, please come by to talk about it."
Safety Dance: Sat., Nov. 18th, 10am-4pmJoe Macca's House 4614 SE 41st Avenue (just off Holgate)

Posted by Jessica Bromer on November 16, 2006 at 16:42 | Comments (7)


Round Up

4 Shows: 2 Here and 2 Beyond


Posted by Melia Donovan on November 16, 2006 at 10:08 | Comments (0)


Wednesday 11.15.06

Archer Gallery's "New Directions"

Detail from Grace Weston's "Identity Crisis"

The defining boundaries of photography as expressive medium continue to expand as illustrated in the Archer Gallery's current show, New Directions. The show gives the world's tiniest hors d'oeuvre of where the current art world is taking the medium, and Jeffrey Archer does an excellent job refreshing our tired eyes and awaking the mind with the ambitions of this collection of photographers, weary as they are from the barrage of images the media spits at us on a daily basis. Photography is everywhere these days, yet this collection of artists test and question. . .(more)

Posted by Amy Bernstein on November 15, 2006 at 17:22 | Comments (1)



Lance Mountain

Culled from his extensive personal archive, Portland artist Stephen Slappe screens some of his favorite skateboard films tomorrow night. Rolling Deep: Skateboarding Films, 1965-1980 features six shorts including "Skaterdater", winner of the Golden Palm for Best Short Film at the 1966 Cannes Film Festival. Come watch the history of the sport unfold on the Big Screen.

Rolling Deep: Skateboarding Films, 1965-1980
Thursday Nov. 16 • 7p and 9p (two screenings)
Clinton Street Theater
2522 SE Clinton St. • Portland, Or

Posted by Jenene Nagy on November 15, 2006 at 13:29 | Comments (0)


Tuesday 11.14.06

Jim Coddington Lecture


Tomorrow night Reed College brings in Jim Coddington, Chief Conservator at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, to give a talk about art conversation issues. Both a craft and science, conservation has recently moved into the spotlight. Opened earlier this year, the Lunder Conservation Center exposes visitors of the Smithsonian American Art Museum and the National Portrait Gallery to what happens behind the scenes. And because they need to look fantastic doing it, the conservators wear smocks specially designed for them by Isaac Mizrahi.
With the increasing number of media works and less than traditional materials being used in art making, Coddington should have plenty of interesting topics for the night.

Jim Coddington lecture
Wednesday, Nov. 15 • 7p
Reed College • Vollum Lounge
3203 SE Woodstock • Portland, Or

Posted by Jenene Nagy on November 14, 2006 at 14:04 | Comments (0)


Developing Culture

Tyler Green pointed out this nice story about the connections between non-profits and developers in the Boston Globe. The most obvious example of this in Portland is the Armory (the Gerding Theater). Other projects like Jim Winkler's development of the the Daisy Kingdom building and PAC's arrangement with David Gold also come to mind.

Another favorite blogger Edward Winkleman had a nice post on the pressures of success upon artistic (mass) production here. It's true much of the revolutionary art of the last century was birthed in complete market obscurity, that simply doesn't exist now. When I was in Miami last year I couldn't believe how many people knew about what was going on in Portland. This year our presence will be even better with more galleries etc., plus Bruce Conkle will have one of his show-stopping snowman in a freezer at Nada this year (his work makes Marc Swanson look so lightweight with its cartoony darkness, and he's been at the game much longer too).

Posted by Jeff Jahn on November 14, 2006 at 11:27 | Comments (0)


Sunday 11.12.06

Mark Newport at PSU


Mark Newport's knitted costumes and embroidered comic book covers combine masculine superhero fantasies with the kinds of subversive appropriation of feminine domestic handcraft that has resurged in the past decade. Newport's work finds resonance in everything from Jim Drain's knitted bodysuits for Forcefield to Dave Cole's oversized knitting machine and work of DIY craft artists like Jenny Hart, who is part of Contemporary Crafts Museum & Gallery's New Embroidery show, which ends today [disclosure: I am Visual Media Coordinator at Contemporary Crafts]. On Monday, Newport will be the featured PSU MFA Lecture Series guest, coinciding with the opening of his solo show at PSU's Autzen Gallery.

The exhibition, entitled Heroic Endeavors, "will feature wearable costumes hand knit by the artist that are based on 'heroic' masculine role models such as the cowboy hero from the 60s and 70s as well as the classic comic book superheroes such as Batman and Superman. A series of prints plus a bedcover will accompany the costumes and expand on the visual language of comic books and the narratives suggested by the costumes."

Lecture · Monday, November 13th · 8:15 p
PSU 5th Avenue Cinema · 510 SW Hall St. Room 92 (on the corner of 5th & Hall)
Funded in part by PICA, PNCA, Reed College, Lewis & Clark College and The Affair at the Jupiter Hotel

Special Exhibition Hours · Monday, November 13th · 6:30 to 8 p Through December 7th · Autzen Gallery · Portland State University · 2nd Floor, Neuberger Hall, 724 SW Harrison Street

Posted by Katherine Bovee on November 12, 2006 at 9:18 | Comments (1)


James Chasse Jr., artist and model

James 'Jim Jim' Chasse by Randy Moe
courtesy of Chambers Gallery

At this point, most Portland residents are familiar with the story of James Chasse's tragic, unconscionable death in police custody. Out-of-towners and those who are a little hazy on the details can read about the incident here.

As a teenager in the late 70's and early 80's, Chasse was a friend of several longtime members of the local art scene, including Eva Lake and Randy Moe. In his late teens, Chasse changed dramatically after developing schizophrenia, which he struggled with until his death on September 17th, 2006. When Moe and Lake learned that Chasse had been killed, they were already preparing for an exhibition of Moe's portraits at Chambers Gallery, which Lake manages. Presciently entitled, It's a Sad, Sad, Sad, Sad World, the show has been expanded to include a portrait of Chasse and a binder filled with photocopies of The Oregon Organism, a zine Chasse created while in his early teens. Moe used an old polaroid photograph of a 14-year old Chasse, affectionately known as 'Jim Jim,' as the source for his memorial portrait...............(more)

Posted by Jessica Bromer on November 12, 2006 at 9:13 | Comments (2)


Saturday 11.11.06

Diana Puntar's An Hour On The Sun at small A

Last Thing I Remember (2006)

Americans are famously materialistic so it's no surprise that American art has a long tradition of material fetish as carrier of information, although it certainly popular in other countries as well. Be it John Chamberland's crumpled cars, Warhol's Gold Marilyn, Carl Andre's bricks, Jeff Koon's vacuum cleaners, Damien Hirst's carcasses, Dieter Roth's chocolate, Yves Klein's blue pigment, Matthew Barney's Tapioca, Tara Donovan's stacks of cups the material is the engine that drives or at least directs the message.

More recently artists like Roxy Paine, David Altmejd or Curtis Fairman have all presented strong bodies of work exploring paint, mirrors and the world of store-bought plastic as well. Locally we have Chandra Bocci, Jacqueline Ehlis, Jesse Hayward, Brenden Clenaghen etc., the list is never-ending.

To this list lets add Diana Puntar at small a projects, it's he last day of her show and her materials are decidedly mid-century sci-fi.

Her favorite material is plywood, used in a way mid-century design fanatics will be very comfortable with. From Frank Lloyd Wright to Charles and Ray Eames it is as synonymous with modern furniture as metal tubing and glass. In step with the fetish Puntar often laminates mirrors to the plywood as well. This all relates back to a time when the future wasn't quite as complicated (save for Earth's annihilation by nuclear weapons).

The extensive use of mirrored plywood slats also serialize space with facets while evoking sputnik era satellite design. It's slightly Alvar Aalto but no where near as refined and some of the plywood edges wouldn't have made his grade...(more)

Posted by Jeff Jahn on November 11, 2006 at 13:26 | Comments (0)


Bargaintastic benefit tonight


Ahhh the bargain hunting holiday art sale season is in full swing and to that end Gallery Homeland presents Residence, a benefit art sale geared towards art lovers and new collectors. Over 50 artists have contributed their best affordable works to benefit Homeland's Residency and National/International art exchange program. Here's the list:

Nicole Amore, Holly Andres, Josh Arseneau, Joe Beil, Troy Briggs, Chris Buckingham, Ali Cook, Sam Coomes, Brent Comstock, Bruce Conkle, Tim Dalbow, Marguerite Day, Nick diSessa, Fred Fliesher, Liz Haley, Kim Hamblin, Meg Hanson, Jimmy Hatch, Scott Wayne Indiana, Ryan Jeffery, Chris Johanson, JoAnn Kemmis... (more)

Posted by Jeff Jahn on November 11, 2006 at 11:52 | Comments (0)


Friday 11.10.06

Sound and Video Festival

sound artist Oliva Block

Celebrating the release of their 5th issue "Autonomy", FO(A)RM magazine is presenting a Festival of Sound and Video at the Portland Art Center. The magazine, published once-yearly, presents investigative projects with a special focus on sound-art, experimental poetics and social sculpture. Each issue clusters around a given topic, gathering together a variety of perspectives, methods and articulations - from the extravagant to the pedestrian (and the juncture between). Included in the festival will be work from man-about-town Mack McFarland, who will be featured in the Northwest Biennial, and an experimental video from the multi-faceted Melody Owen. The lineup also includes critically acclaimed electro-acoustic composer Olivia Block, minimalist drone artist Seth Cluett, local avant-folk accordionist Luc, and ethereal noise trio Borborygmus (Jonathan Sielaff/David Hirvonen/Jean-Paul Jenkins), along with a screening of abstract video curated by Morgan Currie and an ongoing barrage of installed video, ranging from the conceptual to the non-linear and fragmentary. Tickets can be purchased here, and will not only get you in the door, but will also get you $2 off the latest issue of the magazine.
FO(A)RM Magazine • Festival of Sound and Video
Portland Art Center
32 NW 5th Avenue • Portland, Or
Saturday, Nov. 18 • 8p
$8/avdance • $10/door

Posted by Jenene Nagy on November 10, 2006 at 17:04 | Comments (0)


Exhibition space not rental space

The Portland Art Museum has just announced that the rental sales gallery is finally leaving the Goodman Gallery space on the main floor of the museum's Belluschi wing. Hot Damn! I've known about this for a long time and you gotta know the curatorial department had to be thrilled when one of the best gallery spaces in the museum became a shop. Museum stores should not occupy exhibition spaces and this stay tarried too long after the completion of the Mark building.

That said it will be used as an orientation space for group tours in the short term. Grumble, grumble... still all will be forgiven though if a nice (long overdue) large-scale contemporary exhibition follows this short term situation.

The rental sales gallery will have its new home in the nearby Elliot tower and will have a special grand reopening on Dec 1st.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on November 10, 2006 at 14:31 | Comments (0)


Thursday 11.09.06

Bubble wrapped bubble cars

Today marked the first trip for Portland's aerial tram's still unnamed cars. KATU had some nice footage of the bubble wrapped/bubble shaped cars first voyage here. If all goes well we can ride in them in January. Artists like Ellen George and Eva Lake will have work at the top of the hill even.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on November 09, 2006 at 21:01 | Comments (2)


Wednesday 11.08.06

Round Up


YouTube!!! YouTube!!!

Can you believe what you can find on YouTube?

Posted by Melia Donovan on November 08, 2006 at 22:04 | Comments (1)


Name the aerial tram cars?


Commissioner Sam is giving us till the end of the month to name the new aerial tram cars, which are due to start tramming away any day now. Note, if they are named Lewis and Clark I'm gonna gag. The aerial tram is the most important structure to go up in Portland since Big Pink in terms of it being a lightning rod of civic symbolism and it's relationship to the kind of city that Portland is becoming should not be underestimated.

Here are some not so serious ideas:

Peanut butter & Jelly
Paige & Plant
Bud & Vera
Ned & Homer
Necessary & Evil
Luke & Laura
Sue Ellen & J.R
Yin & Yang
John and Kristy

My absolute worst idea = Enterprise & Galactica (Millennium Falcon just doesn't work)

You can email Sam Adams with your ideas here and have until 5:00 PM November 30th.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on November 08, 2006 at 9:45 | Comments (2)


Tuesday 11.07.06

Ty Ennis at NAAU

Ty Ennis, Hooray Picasso, 2006
courtesy of New American Art Union

Ty Ennis referenced artists Marcel Dzama and Chris Johanson in his last solo exhibition at NAAU, obliquely promising to move beyond their influence in his next body of work. The invention of a completely new style within a year's time is a daunting task for any artist; it's something that only Picasso seems to have gracefully accomplished. Perhaps this is why the man who "never got called an asshole--not in New York" is saluted, with bitter cheer, in the essentially style-less Hooray Picasso.

Posted by Jessica Bromer on November 07, 2006 at 12:42 | Comments (10)


Election day thoughts on drawing in the aughts

Marcel Dzama, Untitled, 2003
courtesy of David Zwirner

One cold and snowy Canadian night, a young artist named Marcel Dzama was setting his wild imaginings to paper at his grandmother's kitchen table with such enthusiasm that he overturned a nearby bottle of root beer base. As the sweet liquid saturated his work, Dzama was struck by his own serendipity. Here was the drawings' key ingredient: something to make his grizzlies' fur a milk chocolate brown and his amputees' crutches an almond tan, to perfectly offset his customary palette of military greens and wan fleshtones. Like the butterfly of chaos theory, whose flapping wings set off a chain reaction that culminates in a tornado, Dzama's clumsy gesture gave birth to the quaint drawing craze.

Posted by Jessica Bromer on November 07, 2006 at 12:18 | Comments (4)


Monday 11.06.06

Don't Blink

Jesse Durost at Elizabeth Leach Gallery

This weekend marked a new trend in art programming in Portland... short run installation art shows featuring work with industrial lighting. Both local boy Jesse Durost and (Croatian) Victor Popovic's shows opened on November 2nd at the Elizabeth Leach Gallery and the Portland Art Center respectively. How does everyone feel about this short run trend?

By Sunday November 5th both had concluded their runs.... here is what you missed...(more)

Posted by Jeff Jahn on November 06, 2006 at 11:28 | Comments (4)


Saturday 11.04.06

Too Much To Do, Too Little Time

Jenny Hart, This Work Never Ends, 2003
hand stitched embroidery on vintage linen, 11 x 11 inches
collection of the artist

Monday night promises amazing feats of travel as art-o-philes zip above the city of Portland on their hovercrafts to enjoy a bonanza of lectures all spaced conveniently 30-45 minutes apart…or about as long as it will take to get from one place to another. PSU, Reed College and PNCA/Contemporary Craft are all inviting you to fill their seats and listen at approximately the same time.

Unfortunately, the technology's not quite there and you’re going to have to choose. Don’t the people in charge of the schedule know each other? Might I suggest a nice coffee date before the next scheduling session with calendar in hand? It would be one thing if something was happening every night, but this ain’t NYC people. There are other days of the week that are open, free and available-like Tuesday, for instance...(more)

Posted by Melia Donovan on November 04, 2006 at 8:57 | Comments (5)


Friday 11.03.06

If you can't beat the blogsphere, join it

Two major Northwest daily newspaper art critics have taken up blogging.

First there is Regina Hackett at the Seattle PI. Her style of reviews and often subjective viewpoint oriented writing is perfectly suited to art blogging.

Then there is David Row's recent turn as a blogger. Yes, I like to refer to him as Death Row (because it's cool) and I am a little disappointed it isn't called the "Death Blog." Once again an unbeatable name... let's compare, my personal blog would have to be called the "Yawn Blog" after the correct pronunciation of my last name, so dull.

Oh well, the "DKlog" should allow him to continue pressuring the museum for a free day (note they need a lot more guard on free days). My solution, simply make one Thursday night a month free instead of a whole day, easier sell and easier to get sponsors eased into the idea.

The interesting development is both David and Regina have plastered their photo's on the web and allow for comments.... I'm blond, I can't disappear (even in a large crowd) but it is sometimes nice to be unrecognized as a critic. I wonder if David and Regina will feel a pang at giving their respective art scenes a target?

All that said, welcome aboard... it's definitely different out on the blogosphere and it often comes down to one's wits. I think arts writing and blogging are probably perfectly suited for one another.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on November 03, 2006 at 15:02 | Comments (1)


Artist's studio spaces don't have funerals, they have sales

333 Studios Warehouse/Garage Sale
Saturday, November 4 from 10am to 4pm
333 NE Hancock (at MLK) - Portland

10,000 square feet and 15 years of stuff, including:

- furniture - tables - desks - wood - metal - tools - shelving - cabinets/bookcases - odds and ends - free stuff - art supplies - and of course art

Posted by Jeff Jahn on November 03, 2006 at 11:37 | Comments (0)


Thursday 11.02.06

First Friday Picks for November


"The show is called Driftwood Castle 'cause that's sort of what we're building. Yesterday we drove my pickup to the coast and loaded it up with driftwood, logs and big rocks. When Bwana and I,'Scrappers,' talked about designing the gallery space we both imagined a beach fort. Call it dumb or whatever, it just seems like the right thing to do."

I wouldn't call it dumb at all, Scrappers. In fact, I, "PORT," have been contemplating building my own little fort, or better yet, bunker, ever since I read your press release. I think you've hit the nail on the head, zeitgeist-wise.

Driftwood Castle, an exhibition/night of thematic revelry, will benefit Habitat for Humanity, serve as homebase for a 6pm scavenger hunt, and feature artwork by Bwana Spoons, Scrappers, Dawn Riddle, Ryan J. Smith, Martin Ontiveros, APAK, Le Merde, Souther Salazar, Jacob Macgraw, and Luke Ramsey, as well as David Wien, whose fantastical drawings are always well worth checking out. Opening Reception • 6-9pm
Grass Hut • 811 East Burnside • 503.445.9924.....(more)

Posted by Jessica Bromer on November 02, 2006 at 12:22 | Comments (0)


Wednesday 11.01.06

Round Up


Brice Marden, bad architecture, Matthew Barney and Joseph Bueys and a benefit.

Posted by Melia Donovan on November 01, 2006 at 10:00 | Comments (0)


Lecture • Lou Cabeen • Reed College

Lou Cabeen, Legacy

If you’re looking for an alternative to the first Thursday rounds or like to squish a lot of art into a short amount of time, make your way to Reed College for Lou Cabeen’s lecture “Home Embroidery: The Art and Craft of Domestic Pleasure”.

Posted by Melia Donovan on November 01, 2006 at 9:57 | Comments (0)

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