Paul Gauguin, "Manao tupapau (The Spirit of the Dead Keep Watch)," 1892
Richard Brettell, chair of art and aesthetics at the University of Texas at Dallas, is lecturing this weekend at PAM. His lecture, Paul Gauguin's Pilgrimmage: Lima, Paris, Pont Aven, and Papeete, explores the life and career of French Impressionist Paul Gauguin.
MIT professor Anne Whiston Sprin is lecturing next week for UofO's Architecture & Allied Arts department at the White Stag building. In Daring to Look: Dorothea Lange's Photographs and Reports from the Field, Sprin documents hundreds of Lange's photos and the descriptions she wrote of them.
Mark Dion is lecturing next week for PMMNLS: "Appropriating archaeological and other scientific methods of collecting, ordering, and exhibiting objects, Dion's often fantastical curiosity cabinets, modeled on Wunderkabinetts of the 16th Century, exalt atypical orderings of objects and specimens."
Artist lecture • 7:30pm • May 4 PSU • 1914 SW Park Ave • Shattuck Hall Rm 212 at Broadway & Hall
NAAU presents the next installation of Couture: Stephen Slappe's Shelter in Place, a 3-channel video installation that is "the culmination of five years of research... Freely combining fiction and nonfiction, this three-channel video installation focuses on two teenagers in West Virginia in the mid-1980s. The characters exist in a media environment that imposes and magnifies their worst fears. Yet even in such a hopeless world, they discover a miraculous way to share subcultural influences. While referencing a specific time and place, Shelter in Place presents a thematically timeless allegory of connectivity and cultural exchange."
Office PDX presents My West Coast. A group of photographers were asked to take a series of images that define the West coast with Polaroid Land Cameras. Five Polaroids will be showcased from each of the following photographers: Alicia Rose, Barbara Kinney, Chris Walla, Jan Sonnenmair, Jeff Selis, Jon Jensen, Lincoln Barbour, and Tony Secolo.
Opening reception • 6-8pm • April 29 Office PDX • 2204 NE Alberta • 888.355.7467
Maggie Casey, "Stairs"
Fiber artist Maggie Casey presents a new site-specific installation at Appendix. Casey explores "a space-based narrative in 3-dimensional drawing."
Basil Childers, image of the Museum of Contemporary Craft
Part 5 of 5 of the PNCA+MoCC community conversations regarding PNCA's acquisition of the Museum of Contemporary Craft is happening this week. Panelists include Victoria Frey (executive director of PICA), Linda K. Johnson (founder of South Waterfront Artist in Residence program), Elizabeth Leach (owner of Elizabeth Leach Gallery), and Tom Manley (PNCA president).
Panel discussion • 6:30pm • April 30 PNCA • 1241 NW Johnson
Local filmmakers Joanna Priestley and Joan Gratz are screening Words Worth a Thousand Pictures: Contemporary Animation About Language this Thursday. Priestly's Missed Aches and Gratz's Puffer Girl will be premiered in addition to five award-winning international films on the use of language and text in animation.
Portrait of Okwui Enwezor by Jeff Weiss, Courtesy Bard College
I had the lovely opportunity to speak with Okwui Enwezor this month as he was in town to speak at the annualFATE conference that took place the weekend of April 3rd. Enwezor is currently the Dean of Academic Affairs at the San Francisco Art Institute and has curated a variety of renowned exhibitions around the world. He took some time early one morning to discuss his views on subjects ranging from the notion of excellence in education to his take on the recent election of Barack Obama as president. . . (more)
MP5 is having their bi-monthly opening this weekend. In MP53 they're featuring Jenevieve Tatiana's Parlor Games: "Those in play here are between modernism and marginality: the endgames of the monochrome and the game theory of social networks, a-chronologically articulated through found web 2.0 information and reshuffled salon-style as sculptural elements." In the hallways there will be installations by Gary Wiseman and Meredith Andrews, Christine Bailey Claringbold, and John Graeter.
Opening reception • 7-9pm • April 26 Milepost 5 • 900 NE 81st Ave • 503.998.4878
Doug Blandy, director of the institute for community arts studies at the University of Oregon, is speaking this Monday for PMMNLS. He'll address community engagement, research, and education in arts institutions.
Artist lecture • 7:30pm • April 27 PSU • 1914 SW Park Ave • Shattuck Hall Rm 212 at Broadway & Hall
My second response to the meeting last night about the integration of the Museum of Contemporary Craft and Pacific Northwest College Craft (PNCA) was that art institutions should consider becoming more specific rather than more general in regards to their programming. It might seem counter-intuitive but there is a term used in retailing called "death in the middle". The term suggests that the way that most people shop for things today is very selective and generally at either the top end or the low end with rarely anything in the middle. The result is that one might see a $500 hand bag being carried by a person wearing a $5 shirt. Either someone really wants something and is willing to invest in it or they need it but are not really emotionally attached to it and therefore it should be as cheap as possible. In other words this is a good market for stores that sells things at the upper end that might be expensive and at the very low end where things are inexpensive, but for the stores in the middle, like department stores that try to be everything to everybody, it is a very difficult time. Just to be clear, these analogies are about the relative price of goods, and maybe the emotional attachments to some products, not indicator of friendliness or approachability. These stores are equally accessible to anyone. It is a good example that we all live in extremes, and that a general audience does not even really exist.
Last night I attended one of the meetings about the integration of the Museum of Contemporary Craft and Pacific Northwest College Craft (PNCA). It was an interesting discussion because it was an honest look at how museums and university galleries address the changing needs of their respective audiences. It is revealing that most museums and galleries now find themselves asking fundamental questions about their existence such as asking what do people want out of the experience of going to a museum? Or what is the best way for museums to leverage their expertise in a changing and dynamic society? In other words, how does a museum stay relevant?
Basil Childers, image of the Museum of Contemporary Craft
Part 4 of 5 of the PNCA+MoCC community conversations regarding PNCA's acquisition of the Museum of Contemporary Craft is happening tonight. Panelists include Nan Curtis (PNCA faculty), Stephanie Snyder (Cooley director & curator), Linda Tesner (Hoffman director & curator), and Namita Gupta Wiggers (MoCC curator).
proposed design is laughably bad (I've called it a casino in the past) and
proves the design process is broken and backwards... overall requiring a fix.
Why? because the architects involved are clearly out of their league, designing
an inelegant and patronizing monstrosity that resembles
the car Homer Simpson designed (The Homer).... essentially decoupling aesthetic
form from function. Major architects know better, hell even minor ones do... (more)
The IFCC has extended their call for artists for their 2009-2010 season to May 8. In keeping with their mission, the IFCC is seeking "solo and group proposals that explore, honor, and celebrate diversity while awakening cultural awareness." You may submit proposals for an original exhibition, or to participate in one of their five established group shows. To learn more and download application guidelines, visit the IFCC website.
The Salem Art Association is seeking artists for Project Space II, a "temporary contemporary art venue in downtown Salem that will offer juried exhibits by regional artists, studio space as well as speakers and performances that encourage community dialogue." Exhibits will rotate every three weeks, and artists are encouraged to engage the community during their three week tenure. The application deadline is May 15. More details and application info here.
I've come to understand why I always wait till Vanessa Renwick's more recent
shows are over or nearly so to review them. They are essentially memorial
services or wakes for those things past and for some reason it seems terribly
redundant to review them while they lay in state.
Instead, of showing the House of Sound as a kind of iconic demise like Trojan
it's an anthropological wake for a music shop as a community taste-making acculturation
node. Installation-wise, the 70's style couch... (more)
What this looks like to me is Brandeis is still
attempting to let the museum's public connections wither (with no director,
curator, or education department) so as to bolster their case. The State's Attorney
General is on them though. The question is, will those who have donated artwork
in trust to the museum take a hard legal approach to Brandeis if the university
attempts to liquidate the work for the benefit of Brandeis in general and not
the Rose specifically? To me that's a massive breach of trust and something
tells me the donors and their representatives have some fight in them if it
comes to that.
*Update:Mayor Adams reverses his Coliseum position and will take another week to explore alternative sites for minor league baseball stadium. Still the basic issue will focus on the details of this "Entertainment District". Will is be a disneylandish-faux-downtown model (ugggh) or something more civic and rewarding?
Portland reflected in the Coliseum's curtain wall of glass
is, does Portland want to become known for tearing down excellent buildings for
the sake of minor league sports teams? Or instead, is this an opportunity to find
a better use for a civic jewel that we haven't made full use of recently? Why
not turn this civic space into something even more civic?
But First, Let's Rally:
Put on by Mr. Libby, architect Stuart Emmons and AiA Portland, PORT readers have
"been cordially invited to a rally opposing the demolition of Memorial Coliseum,
one of the great landmarks of Portland Architecture and one of America's most
architecturally significant arenas ever constructed - a mid-century modern gem."
Gustave Klimt, "Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer I," 1907
As part of the ongoing Jewish film festival, the NW Film Center is featuring Stealing Klimt tomorrow night. This documentary recounts the decades-long struggle of Austrian-born Maria Altmann to recover five Gustave Klimt paintings stolen from her family by the Nazis in 1938, and hanging in the Austrian National Gallery since 1945.
Film screening • 7pm • April 21 NW Film Center • 1219 SW Park • Whitsell Auditorium
Abelardo Morell, "Camera Obscura: View of Central Park Looking North-Summer"
Photographer Abelardo Morell is speaking at PAM next week for Photolucida. "A professor of photography at the Massachusetts College of Art, Morell is known for his images of exterior scenes transposed onto quiet interior settings through the use of the camera obscura."
Neighborhood Public Radio (NPR) is lecturing on Monday for PMMNLS. They're a guerrilla radio group who critique the more famous NPR through community-based, noncommercial programming broadcast streaming on the Internet or through low-power portable FM transmitters.
Artist lecture • 7:30pm • April 20 PSU • 1914 SW Park Ave • Shattuck Hall Rm 212 at Broadway & Hall
The Japanese Garden is featuring Paper Arts in the Pavilion. "Paper plays an important part of many Japanese celebrations," and the use of paper in fine arts and craft has a storied cultural history. An array of Japanese paper styles by local artists will be displayed during the exhibition.
Paper arts • April 18 - 26 Japanese Garden • 611 SW Kingston Avenue • 503.223.1321
Jim Lomamasson's "Exit Wounds" installed at NAAU
Jim Lommasson's Exit Wounds, formerly at NAAU, is currently installed at PCC Rock Creek's Helzer Gallery. In conjunction with the exhibition there will be a panel discussion with Iraq and Afghanistan vets this afternoon, followed by a gallery reception.
Panel discussion • 3-4:15pm • April 16 Helzer Gallery • 17705 NW Springville Rd. • Building 3
The NW Film Center presents the best of the 2008 Ottawa International Animation Festival. The "Best of Ottawa" program presents festival award winners, audience favorites, and other entries in a variety of genres and forms. Screenings of these short segments run from April 17 through April 25. You can view the full schedule here.
Last night's CAN (creative advocacy network) town hall meeting last night, ran long... had some interesting new info and was somewhat encouraging, even in this
difficult economic environment. In general (as in past
meetings) it was about creating a public funding source (via taxes) that
has a chance of being passed. Many are understandably skeptical but this isn't
being run like an arts organization, it's being run like a political campaign.
Here is a detailed PDF of the plan.
I liked the focus on suitcase funds for artists, greater cultural tourism support and more focus on emerging artists for RACC (that's a major change from RACC a decade ago when I first moved here, but there is always more work to do).
Pointing out the obvious, while planning to jump start 20 million in funding for the arts. Denver is so high because they passed an arts funding measure similar to what Portland is planning.
Basically, Sam Adams and company laid out a roadmap for increasing public support for
the arts in Portland's metro area.... (more)
Eric Steen presents Building in the Post Apocalypse at PSU's MK Gallery: "An exhibition that documents and explores possible options of community, collaboration, and education through socially engaged practices." In addition to the artist reception, the show features several events, including a "Public Social University" and screening of a series of sci-fi films, The Man Who Could Work Miracles and Panic in the Year Zero & The Man From Earth. The full list of events can be found here.
Film screening • 10pm • April 13
Public Social University • 3-6pm • April 16
Artist reception • 6-9pm • April 16
Film screening • 9pm • April 16 MK Gallery 2000 SW 5th Avenue • Art Building, 2nd floor rm 210
Tim Dalbow, "Hood"
The Linfield Gallery presents Volcanoes, new paintings by Tim Dalbow. He writes: "A painting is an attempt at a solution. The blank canvas is a proposed problem and the process of making a painting is a hypothesis. Painting is not an exact science but I do believe it is a science. Each painting is an excuse to ask the question again."
Exhibition • April 15 - May 13, 2009 Linfield Gallery • 900 SE Baker St., McMinnville • Miller Fine Art Center
Newspace is seeking submissions for their 5th annual juried exhibition, which will be on view in August 2009. All photographic themes and processes are accepted, but work must have been created within the past three years. Selected photographers will participate in the exhibition, and one will receive a solo show at Newspace and a $500 award. Submissions are due May 29. Details here.
(More opportunities: public art & gender identity. Larry Sultan for PMMNLS.)
The WWeek has the scoop, another sad day... Mark Woolley Gallery to close after 15 years in business. (Yes close is the right word this time, galleries often reinvent themselves but that isn't the case here.)
Damien Gilley presents Air Math at PSU's Autzen Gallery. In this exhibition, "Gilley visually reconfigures the urban environment to provide alternative viewing experiences that complicate rational space... The works question the reliability of vision through the presentation of illusionistic wall drawings, indeterminate landscapes, modular forms, and compositions that extend the parameters of 'flatness'." Gilley will be in attendance at the gallery on April 18 from 10am to 4pm.
Opening reception • 6-9pm • April 11 Autzen Gallery • 724 SW Harrison Street • Neuberger Hall, 2nd Floor, rm 205
Barry Johnson over at the Oregonian, is also discussing Willamette bridge appropriateness
good thoughts. Still, his focus on height is a bit of a red herring, it's
about a design that stands up to context rather than pandering to it. A more
tailored cable stay design could be even more elegant and appropriate than the
wave or hybrid design and declare that pedestrians/bikes and mass transit are
the most celebrated modes of locomotion in the city. In my mind this bridge
was considered an engineering and budget driven project above all else. The
aesthetics are being added at the end... a kind of hail mary attempt by the
architect to save the process from itself . That strategy is appropriate for
the architect but frankly it's bad for a "city planning"... ironically
what the bridge will come to symbolize. All things considered this "hybrid"
design should be Trimet's first choice (let's see).
All that that said this Willamette span issue clears the path for stronger
discussion of the I-5 bridge, which is currently a blind man's elephant
in dire need of an architectural competition to gain clarity. Also, the Oregonian
still requires a real architecture critic to take the lead in this discussion,
healthy civics require major and experienced critical framing. Art criticism
is more of an insiders game and PORT is just offering an aesthetic assessment
on a larger issue... our focus makes us more limited in major civic discussions.
Important yes, but we are just voices from the vis art community.
Portland Architecture has weighed
in on the Hybrid
Bridge model for the Willamette we gave you a peek at last weekend. It seems
like the consensus is the Trimet process hasn't taken design seriously enough,
even though that bridge over the Willamette is likely to become a major symbol
for the city. I can say PORT has gotten image requests for the seemingly out
of the running wave design and none for the other options.
If you want some cultural blood sport, Tyler Green's play
by play over deacessioning between Christopher Knight and Donn Zaretsky.
My feelings about this are that museum deacessioning should only occur if it
if the work is unrelated or secondary to the Museum's primary focus and or the
museum already has significant holdings of that artist rendering the work a
second class citizen. Deacessioning should be rare and done to support the museum's
mission... which is not the case with The
Rose, which is just a money grab.... pure and simple.
China Urban opens this week at Reed's Cooley Gallery. This exhibition of contemporary Chinese art "explores the historical and
contemporary Chinese city - as representation, model, catalyst, and socio-political construct." Before the reception begins, calligrapher Dr. Yang Jiyu will enact a public performance of the calligraphy of Hong Kong artist Tsang Tsou Choi (1921-2007) - the "King of Kowloon" - on the glass walls of the gallery. A full list of related lectures and events can be found here.
Opening reception • 7-9pm • April 9 Cooley Gallery • 3203 SE Woodstock Blvd. • Library
(More: Michael Knutson lectures @ PAM, MoCC & PNCA continue their community conversations.)
Though 1st thursday's openings were a bit conservative this month (lacking the excitement and sales of new artists like Eva Speer and PORT's Ryan Pierce last month... except Chambers) shows like Matt King at Fourteen30, Damien Gilley and Ethan Rose at Gallery Homeland and Stephen Slappe etal. at The Art Gym made for memorable openings that would have added "zing" my recent New York trip. Nice to know Portland still stacks up and is showcasing interesting new talent.
Matt King's Science Diet was a rumination on uneasy consumption...
Expanded Narrative: The Photographic Image in Mixed Media Constructions opens this week at Clark College's Archer Gallery. Featuring work by Theresa Batty, Ian van Coller, Heidi Kirkpatrick, Nathan Lucas, Amy Pruzan, Jacinda Russell, and Preston Wadley, Expanded Narrative explores the use of the photographic image within the constructed object.
Opening reception • 4-6pm • April 8 Archer Gallery • 1933 Fort Vancouver Way, Vancouver, WA • Penguin Union Building
advance look at "Hybrid Bridge" model courtesy Rosales + Partners/Schlaich Bergermann and Partner LP
On April 7th at City Hall, architect Miguel
Rosales will unveil his latest bridge design, the first new span over the
Willamette in over 35 years. There will be a scale model unveiling at 6:00 and
a lecture by the architect at 7:00.
Pied-á-terre is featuring a pair of photographs by Danielle Colen. Interested in exploring a heightened rather than a transformed reality, Colen presents views through an anonymous office window, offering a meditation on the relationship between pictoral space, gallery space, and the outside world.
Matt King's Science Diet is at Fourteen30 this month: "Seductive and sickening, King's recent sculptures aggressively assert their position as commodity while questioning the
relationships between desire, comfort and the complicity that keeps the system in place. King reconstitutes the images and
objects of a marketed culture in ways that reorient their latent meanings. His banal and pleasurable source materials - dollar store
items, height indicator strips, drinking straws, and even cat food - feel both unexpected and significant."
Skull With Cigarette, 2007 [based on a painting by Van Gogh] and Close Up
When I wrote this at 9:36:22pm on March 22, 2009 the US population, according to the Census Bureau, was 306,063,901. For the current population, add 1 person for every thirteen seconds since then. This is the mathematical frame for Chris Jordan's installation up now through the 12th of July at the Portland Art Museum's Apex gallery. The selections from his Running the Numbers series attempts to lay out the statistics from recent American consumerism, creating flawless photomontages that literally depict the specific number e.g. 200,000 packs of cigarettes, equal to the number of Americans who die from cigarette smoking every six months. The works are spotless and overwhelming to the point of becoming specter-like in their meaning, teasing an allegorical omnipresent truth of innocuousness in American consumption.
Scholar W.J.T. Mitchell is speaking this evening on The Future of the Image at PNCA. Mitchell, editor of the interdisciplinary journal Critical Inquiry, is associated with the emergent fields of visual culture and iconology. He is known for his work on "the relations of visual and verbal representations in the context of social and political issues."
Visual studies lecture • 6:30pm • April 1 PNCA • 1241 NW Johnson • 503.226.4391
(More speakers: Okwui Enwezor for FATE and Peter Kreider for China Urban.)