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

recent entries

Matt McCormick at Elizabeth Leach Gallery
Oddities and Ends
Two things that never change: money and more change
Perplexing Conundrums and the Light in the Midst: Sue Coe at PNCA
Marie Watt at PDX
Pandering to indie filmmakers
Marko Lulic Lecture March 28th at Reed College
O! brother where Art thou?
Toast Portland Artists April 2nd at the Screendoor Restaurant
RE:Dude's Night Out
So much for a crisis in art criticism
An Interview with Elliott Erwitt

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Saturday 03.31.07

Matt McCormick at Elizabeth Leach Gallery

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Still from McCormick's Motor Hotel

It's the last day of Matt McCormick's Future So Bright at Elizabeth Leach Gallery and the show has spurred a lot of private discussions I'd like to air here.

The videos were initially shot on a 16mm hand cranked Bolex and have this wonderful color saturation, but they picked up some artifacts when scanned into digital. The mélange is a kind of purgatory moment in media, mimicking the temporal structures the images depict. At first the digital artifacts bothered me as it obscured the subtle rustling of the grass in front of an old mining building in the single channel video "Western Edge." In other cases the digital artifacts were impossible to distinguish between heat waves in front of an abandoned building. I both liked and felt cheated by the ambiguity. Does this need a higher resolution scan? Would that ruin it? What if the single channel video "Western Edge" were even bigger and shown by itself?...(more)

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 31, 2007 at 10:28 | Comments (4)

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Friday 03.30.07

Oddities and Ends



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small A will hold an off-the-normal-schedule-of-events opening for their end of March through April show tomorrow night from 5-8pm. A solo show of work by Josh Shaddock dubbed It goes without saying will include video, photographs, text pieces and…one painting. Shaddock, who showed with the gallery in their December group show Green Light Green Light, is a New York based artist who has also shown at White Columns, in Lisbon and in San Francisco.

Josh Shaddock • It goes without saying
small A projects
Sat • Mar 31 • 5-8p

Posted by Melia Donovan on March 30, 2007 at 9:10 | Comments (0)

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Thursday 03.29.07

Two things that never change: money and more change

Ditto on Tyler Green's boredom with lazy art writing that is mostly focused on money. It's the ideas and cultural shifts that legitimize art, museums, interesting cities and the writing about them... not so much the transaction fees (those fade). Saatchi said it best, "The rich will always be with us." Once that is accepted (the French and Bolshevik revolutions proved it) then the real work of, "what ideas are being explored, what are the tough questions of the age, etc." can be tackled. Sure, one has to be a little nuts to go against the flow, but one also has to be more than bright and talented to change the flow of that stream.

Also, I felt Holland Cotter's piece which spurred Tyler Green's words did bring up the most important point, where is the cultural leadership? Is that kind of leadership a thing any civilization can entrust to museums? Isn't that the domain of driven individuals who want to change the world? I loved Cotter's take on cynicism as "exhausting and pacifying."

Portland from 2001-2003 went through a war between cynics and optimists. The optimists won (or at least the knee jerk cynics stopped freaking out long enough to become begrudging optimists who freak out less and ask better questions). Slowly but surely the city's other organs of culture have been catching up in with the continuing growth spurt. I'm pretty sure this ride wont be smooth so don't expect anything good to come from mildness or mere good intentions. To survive in the rapidly developing arts ecosystem here, cultural productions in Portland have to foreground an informed passion and a real esoteric depth (there are no accidents in these departments). Yes, I'm still working on my piece about Portland now (on Sunday it will be 8 years) and the main tasks at hand.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 29, 2007 at 17:26 | Comments (2)

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Wednesday 03.28.07

Perplexing Conundrums and the Light in the Midst: Sue Coe at PNCA

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"He Shot My Dog Ziggy" Sue Coe 2006

There is a limp irony in the handshake that pervades deals made and sealed in the art world today; in the midst of so much political unrest, tyranny, and corruption on a global level, there are surprisingly few artists who choose to address these injustices with the honesty and outrage as does artist Sue Coe. Coe intends to illustrate. . .(more)

Posted by Amy Bernstein on March 28, 2007 at 19:40 | Comments (0)

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Marie Watt at PDX

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Marie Watt, Ledger: Tread Lightly, 2007
Reclaimed wool blankets, satin binding thread, 92 1/2" x 121"

Wool blankets are hung on the walls and piled on the floor of PDX Gallery like well-worn, well-traveled canvases. They've been claimed and reclaimed, frayed , cut, recut, unraveled and resown. Some have been altered out of existence, with wood or cast bronze replacements left in their stead................(more)

Posted by Jessica Bromer on March 28, 2007 at 5:28 | Comments (11)

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Tuesday 03.27.07

Pandering to indie filmmakers

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Jacob & Arnold Pander by Marne Lucas

Yup, Portland is a hotbed for indie filmmaking, check out the latest with Joseph Gallivan's article on the Pander Brother's new movie in the Tribune. Note how the look of Portland is of such importance. The Pander brothers, Arnold and Jacob are artists as well and I had drinks Sunday night at Thatch a newish Tiki bar festooned with Arnold's awesome velvet paintings along with a bunch of former Trader Vic's statuary.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 27, 2007 at 8:49 | Comments (0)

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Monday 03.26.07

Marko Lulic Lecture March 28th at Reed College

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Marko Lulic, Hard and Soft No.2, 2002/05, fiberplate, wood, varnish, 450 x 650cm.


Marko Lulic Lecture at Reed College
, Eliot Hall, room 314
Wednesday, March 28, 7 p.m. (free)

Ok there have been a heap of lectures in Portland recently but this is one of my top 3 this Spring (the other two are Dan Cameron April 15th and Rosalind Krauss May 20th at PAM). Here is a link to Lulic's most recent exhibition. (note the invaluable Cooley Gallery will be closed for rennovations [no more carpet!] till September, Lulic will have the re-opening show).

I'm extremely excited about Marko's work, he's an artist who explores old new ideas with a great deal of panache. The work infuses the dead ends of politics, architecture and other forms of power with the sense that their circle no longer holds us with their once tighter a grip, while pointing out the lingering pervasiveness of that grip. Thanks to Marjorie Meyers for making this happen...(more)

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 26, 2007 at 10:22 | Comments (0)

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Sunday 03.25.07

O! brother where Art thou?

Surprise surprise, the Oregonian doesn't get Chris Johanson. It's the kind of regionalist reactionary coverage we have come to expect from the O (ok they do a good job with voyeuristic photography like Crewdson etc.).

For a more balanced take this is what PORT wrote last month. I think the installation part of the APEX show is one of the better ones Ive seen him do.

Johanson at his best is a brilliant poet and not so much an outsider as an inside leader of an international trend in valuing indie cred sincerity (always a difficult thing to gage). It is related to the WTO riots. What is sad is that the O failed to explore why Portland is appealing to Johanson and thousands of other artists... the city is one giant conscientious objection to the second half of the 20th century. 100 years from now Johanson (along with Basquiat) will be seen as a voice to contend with in a sea of meganational and yuppie aesthetic slickness. (I'm coming up on my 8th anniversary in Portland and I'll be publishing a big picture piece this week discussing that very thing).

The Mercury's review of the Johanson show also makes some nice points but I felt the childlike angle infantilized the work in a way that leads to readings like that in the O. Johanson's less a child and more like someone who shuns refinement for refinement's sake.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 25, 2007 at 13:58 | Comments (0)

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Friday 03.23.07

Toast Portland Artists April 2nd at the Screendoor Restaurant

Please forgive the cross promotion, Ultra and the WWeek have already posted and I've been tardy on this:

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Organism's first big fundraiser of 2007 is the Toast Gala, a special evening with a four course dinner celebrating a diverse sample of Portland's visual artists at the Screendoor. Wines by Panther Creek (space is limited so RSVP with payment by March 29th).

The guestlist is already shaping up to be an impressive catalogue of movers, makers and shakers (with some interesting new to town faces who haven't gotten involved before). We plan to do more of these to put the spotlight on many other deserving artists.


Celebrated artists (both emerging and established, all actively showing outside the region):

James Lavadour
Matt McCormick
Sean Healy
Ellen George
R. Scott Porter & Nat Andreini (Sincerely John Head)
Katherine Bovee & Philippe Blanc
Brenden Clenaghen
Carson Ellis

Why wouldn't you want to buy these artists dinner? Also, we intend to do more of these as a way to give back to the hardworking artists. We chose Screendoor because of its excellent food, elegant yet warm Donald Judd meets the South decor and the fact that it's a favorite with artists, rockstars, ad people, professional snowboarders etc., its got a great mix of elegance with no boring. Panther Creek is simply one of the best winemakers available anywhere.

Details: Organism's Toast Gala, will celebrate a diverse sample of Portland's nationally/internationally active during an exciting 4 course dinner at one of Portland's new favorite restaurants: Screendoor, along with award winning wines by Panther Creek. You've never been to the Screendoor like this special private event, dress festive.

Music by Ponderosa (spacefolk cello and banjo)

Cost: $75, RSVP with Check or Credit card by March 29th.

Checks can be made out to: Organism Toast Gala, PO Box 17247, Portland, Oregon 97217

Credit Card payments can be taken at this site.

Time/Place: April 2nd 7:00 PM at Screendoor, 2337 East Burnside

This fundraising event benefitting Organism will also provide a sneak peek at our exciting Spring exhibition "Model Behavior" a group show featuring Hank Willis Thomas, Yoram Wolberger and many others. We plan to program at least 4 shows per year with a focus on quality over quantity.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 23, 2007 at 17:54 | Comments (0)

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Thursday 03.22.07

RE:Dude's Night Out

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Todd Johnson, clockwise from the top: DD-2 (Dove Decoy),P-1 (Pistol), D-2 (Duck Decoy), FL-1 (Fishing Lure), K-1 (Knife) all 2007

When Cris Moss tapped into a circle of friends at the last minute for the show "Re: dudes night out" at the Linfield Gallery, he unexpectedly dug deeper into one of the more prominent undercurrents of the Portland art scene, translocated or transposed territory. The intention of the show (on an extremely tight time schedule) was to show how a group of artists might relate to one another as a social network rather than though shared ideas about work, process, or some overall theme. Strangely, although the artists work in a wide variety of mediums, most of the artists seemed interested in one way or another in transposing one idea about space or territory into another so that when it is placed in a new location it is transformed into something completely different... (more)

Posted by Arcy Douglass on March 22, 2007 at 10:14 | Comments (11)

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Wednesday 03.21.07

So much for a crisis in art criticism

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Still relevant: Mr. Peter Schjeldahl

The best bit of art writing published this March was Peter Schjeldahl's awe inspiring take on Robert Ryman and Franz West etc. He's great, even brilliant with Ryman but gets Murakami wrong of course. Murakami is uber-whoring the drama in a very professional/insidious way that makes the drama very nihilistic. He's basically outflanking the idea starved art world along with Schjeldahl in the process. Why? because he has gotten a lot of credit for the last great idea (the complete flattening of consumption and culture, best showcased at art fairs). Also, I'm enjoying their new website design too, much better and more linkable.

*Update: Holland Carter of the New York Times points out the Locally Organized Gravity show along with Portland's own Red 76...(more)

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 21, 2007 at 11:05 | Comments (0)

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Tuesday 03.20.07

An Interview with Elliott Erwitt

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Elliott Erwitt

Elliott Erwitt is one of the most exceptional and prolific photographers in the field today. Born in 1928, he's been photographing steadily (and indulging in his hobby on the side) for over half a century. Erwitt's Leica has captured iconic figures from Che Guevara to Marilyn Monroe, as well as countless slices of daily life, hundreds (perhaps thousands) of dogs, and the ever-evolving social landscape of America, Europe and points beyond. A selection of images culled from his latest book, entitled Personal Best, is on view at the Portland Art Museum through April 29th. Mr. Erwitt recently spent a few days in Portland in order to deliver a lecture at PAM, and kindly shared a little of his time for the following interview.....................(more)

Posted by Jessica Bromer on March 20, 2007 at 0:50 | Comments (10)

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Monday 03.19.07

PSU MFA Monday Night Lecture Series • Tonight: Shaun O'Dell

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Shaun O'Dell • PSU Monday Night Lecture Series
Mon • Mar 19 • 8:15p
510 SW Hall St • 5th Avenue Cinema Room 92
Free

Shaun O'Dell is a painter, illustrator, videographer and musician who explores the intertwining realities of the human and natural orders. The symbolic lexicon in his work becomes a historiographic mapping of mythic narratives about humans, nature, time, and the development of cultural and nationalistic ideologies. He examines how America's long-time addiction to the technological and ideological suppression of nature has helped create a culture of denial.

O'Dell has exhibited his work at many venues, including the Jack Hanley Gallery in San Francisco, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, UCLA Hammer Museum, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, Whitebox in New York, and the Marianne Boesky Gallery in New York. His work is held in the permanent collections of the SFMOMA, M.H. deYoung Memorial Museum and the Berkeley Art Museum. O'Dell received his MFA from Stanford. He is the recipient of the 2006 Diebenkorn Teaching Fellowship from the San Francisco Art Institute, 2005 Arttadia Award, 2004 SECA Award from the San Francisco Museum Of Modern Art and a 2002 Fleishhacker Foundation Award. He is currently teaching at the San Francisco Art Institute and is the co-organizer of The New New Masses, a lecture series on Art and Politics. (pr)

Posted by Melia Donovan on March 19, 2007 at 9:25 | Comments (0)

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Friday 03.16.07

Thinking Big and Building Better Bridges

I'm curious about how people in the art community will react to the front page story in the Oregonian about some creatives being edged out? Clearly gentrification is a double edged sword, combining higher rents with an opportunity for better arts patronage. The devil is in the details on this issue.

I'd call it a cultural distillation process and the city's character is at stake, the weird part of Portland needs to get distilled and weirder as well. The real corner to turn here is patronage and that means the word sophistication needs to come into play amongst developers, politicians, RACC, collectors and the press (especially the O). Art for populism's sake (which panders to an assumed audience rather than challenging it) isn't enough, it takes challenging art programming, which is frankly a lot weirder than work that merely gestures at populism while hoping it will somehow to help creatives.

Sophisticated artists aren't just a little different, they are extremely idiosyncratic. Portland is blessed with a lot of very serious artists and the city government has made a lot of noise about this. Still, little has been done. In fact the Everett Station Lofts (circa 1989) are still the best hotbed for emerging visual arts culture in town. Here's a prediction, whoever wins the next mayoral election will do so because they actually have a truly sophisticated arts plan that goes beyond minor gestures.

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Prince Claus bridge by UN Studio

Also, the I-5 bridge is too important to nickle and dime or second guess like this story in the Tribune. We need a design competition (Calatrava, Foster, UN Studio etc.) federal funds and an attitude that this will shape the region for the next 70 years. Why not plan on spening 8 billion plus and do it right. This requires big thinking not hunting for a bargain, it will cost us sorely in the long run if we don't.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 16, 2007 at 16:11 | Comments (2)

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Thursday 03.15.07

Red Yellow Blue by Arcy Douglass

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Land's End (1963)

These are the three primary colors stenciled by Jasper Johns onto his famous painting Land's End, completed in 1963. It is currently in the collection of San Francisco Museum of Art and now on view at the National Galley of Art for the Jasper Johns' show, An Allegory of Painting, 1955-1965.

Starting from the three primary colors, an artist can...(more)

Posted by Arcy Douglass on March 15, 2007 at 18:08 | Comments (0)

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Portland art scene gets around in 2007

I've updated the list of Portland art scenesters showing outside of the region with info on Sincerely John Head, Vanessa Renwick, Patrick Rock and Brenden Clenaghen.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 15, 2007 at 10:51 | Comments (0)

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Wednesday 03.14.07

Re: Dude's Night out in McMinnville Friday

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What happens when artists turn a social construct into an exhibition? It mostly depends on the caliber of the artists... In this case it's very high.

Curator Cris Moss took a series of "Dude's Night Out" emails and curated a show around it.
March 12-April 13th at Linfield College.
Opening March 16th: 6:00 PM

The artists: Bruce Conkle, Sean Healy, Jesse Durost, Todd Johnson, David Corbett, Jesse Hayward, Marne Lucas and Paul Middendorf. Conkle has a lot of buzz amongst the other artists for some kind of hypnotic coconut soundsystem, a direct result of his residency in Rio I suspect...and Paul Middendorf is bringing his recent PS1 "Emergency" project. The ever mysterious Todd Johnson, Portland's best/most intelligent deadpan conceptual photographer has reappeared as well. Lucas apparently got in by having, "the biggest pair of balls," no word on how that study was conducted. Yes, it's in McMinnville (a.k.a. wine country) but it sounds like this one is worth the trip.

The Linfield exhibit is free and open to the public. The Linfield Fine Art Gallery is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. The gallery will be open during spring break, March 26-30.

To reach the gallery from 99W, turn east on Keck Drive at the McMinnville Market Center in south McMinnville. Turn right at the first street onto Library Court. The art gallery is located in the second building on the left, Building B. Parking is available on the street and in the lot west of Nicholson Library. For a campus map click here, go to Miller Fine Arts Center is number 56. For more information, call 503-883-2804.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 14, 2007 at 11:33 | Comments (5)

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"Paper Chase" at the Guestroom Gallery

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"Thomas Lloyd" 2006 Philip Iosca
Photography courtesy Dan Mclaughlin

This month the Guestroom Gallery offers up their tasty take of what seems like a called suit in Portland's art scene recently: the medium of collage (see Liz Leach's 25th anniversary show as well as December 2006 for the Chambers Gallery). Call it Dada or jazz or. . .(more)

Posted by Amy Bernstein on March 14, 2007 at 8:14 | Comments (3)

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Monday 03.12.07

Why not?

Steve McQueen does the ultimate political mailart piece, read about it in the Guardian.

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the Pacific Northwest from a different angle

Also, there is a discussion about the Tacoma Art Museum's art critic panel on regionalism last Saturday on Art Dish.

My opinion on such discussions is short and sweet, those who wallow in the regionalism thing beget more wallowing regionalism, it's a defensive self-perpetuating cycle that becomes brittle and trite. I've said it a lot, "on the Internet everything is local." The art wold has never been so regionally level and one's focus determines their trajectory (not to say you wont have to work hard if you are in Portland or Seattle).

Also, the Northwest and Portland in particular are indicative of a different kind of America and people are flocking here to find it, it isn't regionalism it's a kind of lightning rod and a conscious decision to find a new way. Really, it's a leadership thing now and the TAM biennial missed the mark there, once again giving Seattle reason to mock Tacoma. I hate being right about these things. Was the show just a ploy to get Seattle to pay attention? Also, though the Portland selections are fair it definitely doesn't give one any idea of the scope of things that are going on down here, if anything it sidesteps the most active art scene in the two states. I think the show could be important but the cramped potpourri curatorial model didn't make that case. To be fair, TAM has been doing the best job of collecting PNW artists of any museum in the area. They have even been giving them coherent solo shows, which is partly why this show has sparked so much dissapointment...(more)

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 12, 2007 at 18:25 | Comments (2)

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This Week: One Lecture


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Marc Joseph • PSU Monday Night Lecture Series
Mon • Mar 12 • 8:15p
510 SW Hall St • 5th Avenue Cinema Room 92
Free

New York photographer Marc Joseph's recent work has focused on book and record shops, framing glimpses of old and new objects as they float through and arrange themselves within the logic of the market, not the abstract logic of art as commodity, but the specific logic of the corner store, the small, peculiar places that expose us to the books and records that matter to us, and which shape our ways of seeing. Joseph has had exhibitions at the Bernard Toale Gallery in Boston, Western Projects in Culver City CA, and PICA in Portland, and is currently exhibiting at the Cooley Gallery at Reed College from JANUARY 23 – MARCH 11, 2007. (pr)

Posted by Melia Donovan on March 12, 2007 at 10:01 | Comments (0)

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Friday 03.09.07

Sneak peek at the new Museum of Contemporary Craft

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Main gallery, Museum of Contemporary Craft

Yesterday, director David Cohen gave the press and other culturalists a tour of the Museum of Contemporary Craft's still unfinished 15,000 sg ft. facilities on Portland's North Park Blocks. The main gallery will have soaring 22 foot ceilings and an impressive overlook. The other galleries are more intimate but no less refined. I'm thrilled that they are keeping the old glass as its irregularities produce cool visual distortions of the outside world activating the viewers perceptual acuity, which can then be trained on the exhibitions. The museum will also have a climate controlled archive and preparation space. The renamed DeSoto building is a commercial condo so the museum and other tenants will own their spaces.

Other features include a community room for meetings and a 3,000 sq foot outside "events" deck for all of the tenants. With other tenants like Bluesky, Augen & Foelick galleries as well as a new photography gallery by Charles Hartman it should further solidify Portland's core of easy to walk art spaces on the west side. Another plus, most of these gallery spaces have soaring ceilings with lots of light, something sorely missed since the demise of the original Savage Gallery whose space was better than most in Chelsea.

The new Museum space will open July 22nd and their last shows in their old space run through March 11th, so last chance.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 09, 2007 at 14:36 | Comments (1)

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Thursday 03.08.07

Ethical Bruhaha in Seattle

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Seattle's new Olympic Sculpture Park at dusk

It's been an interesting week up in Seattle with critic Matthew Kangas coming under a full scale ethics probe on the Stranger's Blog (the SLOG) for requesting artwork from artists he reviewed. I find this practice very distasteful. I even dislike the constant use of art auctions and other situations where artists give up work for fundraisers. It's predatory and Im not just speaking for myself here, a lot of dealers and artists in Portland have absolutely had it. Good cause or not it's promoting a culture of pressuring and leaching off of artists (in a developing art economy like Portland it undermines markets unfairly).

Now, The Stranger's Jen Graves has the full story on Kangas and names names ... It's the paper's lead story this week and it's a fascinating read, some thought it was wrong to blog first but I think it flushed the story out...(more)

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 08, 2007 at 12:34 | Comments (0)

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Wednesday 03.07.07

Portland Is...Fun!

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This was sent to me from the cool guys at Psilo Design:

The Portland Funbook was released in September 2006. Forty artists contributed. We printed and distributed 4,000 copies! All Free! A big thanks our local advertisers! We also raised some good cash for the Genocide Intervention Network working over in Darfur region of Sudan. It was a good start, but now we want to make it FUNNER!

The second Funbook will showcase even more amazing artists from this amazing city. Imagine a big poster drawn by a dozen artists, buttons, multiple stickers, a foldable card stock Portland, another raging party, and a 7" vinyl record with 12 songs from 12 local artists, at a minute each, plus who knows what else…

We're looking for fresh talent! Who cares if you've never had a gallery show, record deal or whatever. Our goal for the Portland Funbook is for it to be a time capsule of our fair city and all the artists roaming it's streets.

The Funbook itself (+ a page by you!) Like #1 we're planning on 56 pages + full color cover. It'll be printed on a similar nice paper stock. The page size is 8 3/8" x 10 3/4"; please include a 1/2" margin around the edges.
Pages due: Monday, March 26, 2007.

Psilo Design Group
www.psilodesign.com (as of right now, this link is having some trouble, so just keep trying)
PO Box 14433
Portland, OR 97293

Posted by Jenene Nagy on March 07, 2007 at 20:27 | Comments (0)

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Adam Sorensen's The Glows at Elizabeth Leach Gallery

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By 2003 Sorensen had been curated into the Oregon Biennial and Core Sample (by yours truly). He was good but not fully developed. His work had a Gary Hume like flatness of field and a precious floral quality that seemed undistinguished if appealing. It felt like an opaque projection only a few steps away from wallpaper but it had a tension that kept it alive. The surfaces were also a little overworked too. Basically, he was a talented painter who hadn't reached his full potential.

Now its 2007 and 3.5 years since the last time we've seen more than 2 of his paintings on a wall and Sorensen has his big debut at what is arguably Portland's top contemporary gallery...(more)

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 07, 2007 at 11:10 | Comments (3)

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School of hard Knox

Portlander's pay close attention to Tyler's take on the the Albright-Knox Gallery in Buffalo. It is the exact opposite situation of the Portland Art Museum, which needs to reach out to the ever increasing young/savvy art conscious workforce that Portland continues to attract (we are gaining rather than than losing to larger cities like New York and LA). My sense from our jam packed lunch a while back is that PAM's new director Brian Ferriso is well aware of this situation and plans to act in the near future...it has been years since a major contemporary show at the museum (Though Roxy Paine, Hirst and Kehinde Wiley are more than just hors d'oeuvres, call em brunch?).

Also, stay tuned for my review of one of those transplanted upstate New Yorkers today.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 07, 2007 at 10:49 | Comments (0)

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Tuesday 03.06.07

Rick Steves, Chief Art Critic of the New York Times?

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Tyler Green once again has the scoop... Kimmelman is leaving New York but not the New York Times. Kimmelman just spoke to a packed house in Portland both delighting the crowd with his charm and somewhat annoying myself and others with his light travelogue style (look to the comments). Looks like there will be more travelogues, not a bad thing but does the chief art critic of the NYT's have to be the art world's Rick Steves? Yes, in my mind Roberta Smith is already the chief art critic and Ive been annoyed with newspaper art criticism that isn't art criticism for some time. I read Kimmelman to revisit an excellent writer's craft but in terms of content I end up feeling like I just read the brochure not the review. I do think Kimmelman could do excellent television shows on art travel, just don't call it criticism.

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 06, 2007 at 11:33 | Comments (2)

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Monday 03.05.07

Round the web

It has been a while since PORT's done a round the web.

Both The New Yorker and NYT's have covered the Jeff Wall show.

The Portland Tribune reported last week on a smaller supplementary I-5 replacement bridge. I dislike this idea intensely as a cost saving measure. Ive heard figures like, "20% of US trade passes over the I-5 bridge each year," so skimping doesnt make any sense. Look, for such a project the fed's should be on board, especially since with light rail it would have such an effect on interstate traffic/commerce. Underbuilding is flat out stupid. I live on N. Interstate and I see the traffic snarls daily and it hasn't even gotten as bad as it will get. It's also the most major public works project to hit the Northwest in decades. Time for a design competition; Foster, Calatrava, UN Studios etc...(more)

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 05, 2007 at 19:01 | Comments (0)

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Sunday 03.04.07

3 events to Rock You Like a Hurricane

A lecture at PSU, a conversation at PICA and a back room at the end of the week...(more)

Posted by Melia Donovan on March 04, 2007 at 19:39 | Comments (1)

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Friday 03.02.07

Skip to my Liza Lou on Saturday at Reed

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Saturday March 3rd 3-5PM

3203 SE Woodstock Blvd at Reed's Eliot Chapel

As part of Reed's Art Week, the beadtastic Liza Lou will be speaking. At the forefront of the massive resurgence in craft as an awe inducing contemporary art experience one would have to consider Lou in any serious discussion of the genre. So the basic question should be, "is her work just a series of entertaining grotesques that use craft as shield or something more?" $5 or Reed ID

Maybe someone dressed as Lewis or Clark should try to pay in beads?

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 02, 2007 at 11:27 | Comments (2)

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First Friday March 2007 Picks

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Thunder Eyez at Grass Hut

Portland's music and art scenes are completely entwined. This show of art by musicians will make that even clearer with work by
E*Rock, Mt. Eerie. White Rainbow, YACHT, Hooliganship, Lucky Dragons/Sumi Ink Club, Adam Zeek, Curtis Knapp (Marriage Records & Watery Graves)
Opening Reception • 6-9pm • March. 2-31
Grass Hut • 811 East Burnside • 503.445.9924... (more)

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 02, 2007 at 10:16 | Comments (0)

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Thursday 03.01.07

First Thursday March 2007

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Matt McCormick's Shaniko House (2007)

Elizabeth Leach Gallery: Matt McCormick's Future So Bright and Adam Sorenson's The Glows
415 NW 9th (503) 224 0521

McCormick's is the undisputed high anticipation show this month. He is currently showing in high profile international exhibitions like The Moscow Biennial and Uncertain States of America. I also think he's added something to the lexicon of work that documents the state of civilization and American westward expansion by focusing on ghost towns and monolithic signage...(more)

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 01, 2007 at 11:08 | Comments (6)

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Marching Curatorial Madness

Oh a curatorial final four, although a lot of interesting curators are missing; Robert Storr, Phillipe Vergne (who missed the boat by not visiting Portland for the last Whitney Biennial show) and Michael Darling?... why not add in Tobias Meyer for sheer lunacy?

I pick:

Lynne Cooke, Paul Schimmel, Thelma Golden (Whitney Biennial coming up, maybe it will be a relevant one) and Hans Ulrich Obrist (who openly acknowledges that artist curated clusters easily out pace curatorially defined constructs... which is what you find in Portland but you just cant ask one curator who to see)

Tyler Green has picks too (dude no way can Higgs take Bonami ... sorry Matthew you are too much of a "dry" specialist to win this corrupt bourgeois competition)

Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 01, 2007 at 10:01 | Comments (0)

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