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Thursday 12.11.08

« Student Film Screening | Main | Thank You Terry »

Terry Toedtemeier passes away

Terry Toedtemeier speaking at the Wild Beauty press conference

PORT is extremely saddened to report that Terry Toedtemeier, the Portland Art Museum's indispensable curator of photography has passed away. More details to come but his life's work can be seen in what I consider to be the year's most important show, Wild Beauty.

He died last night and collapsed while speaking in Hood River about the Wild Beauty show. Also, he had a recent history of heart problems.

It is a terrible and tragic loss, he had such a sweet presence that was coupled with an utterly contageous passion for photography, geology and life. We will all miss him and our thoughts are with his family and loved ones.

The community has lost a giant but we gained immeasurably through his efforts.

Terry_T2_in landscape.jpg
Photograph of Terry by Phil Bard, one of the Portland Art Museum's photography council members.

Here is the Oregonian's touching obit.

The day has been filled with freinds and colleague's calls, recounting their stories of Terry... how he'd give fresh loaves of French bread to young museum staffers, his explosively phreatic laughs, the way he'd bear hug... etc. The list is endless....

Personally, I'll miss our our intense geology geek out sessions. The man loved volcanoes and lava the way birds love the sky.

Here is the Portland Art Museum's official remembrance

Posted by Jeff Jahn on December 11, 2008 at 10:03 | Comments (5)


It's terrible.

And I know so many of us are staring at our pages or telephone receivers, or friends who have delivered the terrible words with deep sadness. Terry has made so many genuine, lasting marks here. Inspired us to contagious laughter. And then there are the beautiful, masterful images of what he's seen of the land that we are eternally grateful he has shared.

He talked pretty dreamy-eyed about the first rocks he fell in love with, playing in the creek by his house. And that he smashed one open to see what was inside. That was the beginning of such a brave, unfiltered life spent chasing discovery.

In the last note he sent me, he said "My psyche aches to be out on the land."

I considered him the dearest of friends, loved him, and I envy those that were able to know him for so much longer than I.


Posted by: me_gs [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 11, 2008 03:11 PM

Terry was wild beauty, He will be missed.

Posted by: Kristan Kennedy [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 11, 2008 04:13 PM

It is great loss that more in Portland arts will not have a chance to learn from Terry true warmth and presence. As a community it is our greatest challenge.

Posted by: Criticaleye-notpen [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 11, 2008 04:27 PM

This news is so sad. Terry was a sweet and gentle person. He was a dear friend.

I don't believe in any kind of afterlife, but I have to believe that tonight Terry is orbiting the Earth in his homemade rocket ship, taking one last look at the Columbia Gorge.

Jim Lommasson

Posted by: robertjohnson [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 11, 2008 10:04 PM

Thanks Terry. You touched and enriched the lives of so many. We will all remember you dearly.

Posted by: bradc [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 12, 2008 02:27 PM

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