The biggest news in Portland's art scene this weekend was that PLACE has abruptly had its lease terminated by Pioneer Square Mall
. PLACE was our pick as the alternative space of the year in 2013
. It was always an odd fit, an alternative art space that staged mock suicides or an outright protestation of consumer behavior (like Paul Clay)
in a downtown mall, but that is what made it work (and what the Portland 2014 biennial totally missed by being 3-6 years behind the curve). In general it is disappointing but in some ways an ending like this is great... it is better to burn out scalding hot than just fade away and it reemphasizes the crucial nature of these improbable alternative spaces to Portland's overall character... if only Portland's more official institutions would get involved (or actually have curators attend shows) during their short lives.
Even the local Fox affiliate got ahold of the story... nothing seems odder than seeing Michael Reinsch's name and fake suicide project on Fox News, but there it is. Hopefully all of the publicity will help PLACE find a new home... perhaps in some place downtown and equally unexpected like a bank?
An excellent essay on Victorian occultism and its relevance to contemporary art
should be required reading for all artists working today.
Lobbyists for major auction houses are opposed to artists and their estates getting a cut of the action
in inflated art market... predictable.
Shigeru Ban, an architect known for making temporary structures has been awarded the Pritzker Prize
. This is significant as his work is often decidedly unmonumental and temporary.
Last but not least, PORT welcomes our newest sponsor the Jordan Schnitzer Family Foundation
. We are very selective about our sponsors and currently the foundation's generosity has a facilitated a long list of exhibitions
it has lent works to such as, the excellent Emancipating the Past: Kara Walker's Tales of Slavery and Power in Eugene, Under Pressure at the Missoula Art Museum
and Radical Repetition at the Whatcom Art Museum. The Jordan Schnitzer Family Foundation has an encyclopedic collection of master prints and Northwest art that it lends to venues around the country. In particular, they make exhibitions and support programs available to communities that often would not have access to such work. Built to share, the collection was one of the first large scale lending libraries in the USA, leading the way for other collectors like Eli Broad and Nicolas Berggruen. In 2012, the Jordan Schnitzer Family Foundation lent an encyclopedic survey of Ellsworth Kelly's prints to LACMA
. That show later traveled back home to Portland
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