By now many collectors have received announcements that Tom
, 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).
I have never seen Cramer's work in real life. I can imagine it is pretty astounding, and that slides of his work don't do the pieces any justice.
I think Laurra Russo is written off too often as the place for all the "old news" artists, yet all the artists you mention are creating their best work right now. I think a large amount of the young art audience (being a youngster myself) in Portland overlook Russo due to it's more mature artists, but they don't know what they are missing out on.
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