Re-discovering Lacquer: 12 Artists Reinvent a Timeless Tradition, (FG) chopsticks by Gallery Shili (photo Jeff Jahn)
I'm very excited about what may be the best craft/design exhibition Portland has seen in decades titled, Re-discovering Lacquer: 12 Artists Reinvent a Timeless Tradition
at the Portland Japanese Garden. Not only does it seamlessly explore some of the newest and most radical uses of lacquer today through its 12 artists and designers... it also features a stunningly simple and elegant exhibition design that highlights the work. This attention to presentation addresses a problem most craft shows in Portland have been undercut by lately. If you love design and craft this is THE show and exquisite work deserves the same level of presentation. I've seen it and this won't disappoint, all while hinting at the coming garden expansion by architect Kengo Kuma (interviewed last year)
who also has work in the show. The exhibition premiered last year in Tokyo and is specificly configured for the Portland space, along with a few different pieces.
According to the PR: "A wide variety of pieces are included—from exquisitely and inlaid lacquered boxes by Yamamura Shinya, whose work was recently featured in a major exhibition in New York, to lacquered acrylic rings by Masako Ban, and gilded lacquer sake cups by Koichiro Kimura. This stunning installation was designed by Javier Villar Ruiz, originally from Barcelona, Spain, who is a partner at Kengo Kuma Associates, and the exhibition includes a tiered lacquer shelf by the renowned architect Kengo Kuma himself."
Guest curated by Duneghan Park it features work by: Masako Ban,Yukio Hashimoto, Naomi Kamata, Koichiro Kimura, Kengo Kuma, Gang Yong Park, Heigo Sato, Hirotatsu Saito, Gallery Shili Tokyo, Kosho Tsuboi,
Satoshi Umeno, Amano Shikki, Shinya Yamamura
Re-discovering Lacquer | June 14 - July 6
Portland Japanese Garden
611 SW Kingston Ave
Pissaro, Place du Carrousel
What could be more Portland than an exhibition on a park? The Tuilleries in Paris to be precise
, featuring sculpture, models, photography, paintings and even video exploring the civics of that famous park. Similarly, Portland is a city of parks and gardens and has long had an odd little-discussed affinity for French things (we do like food, wine and liberty-egality-fraternity does describe Portlanders). But the roots of our francophilia goes way back to early settlements like Champoeg and later in the early 20th century many of Portland's top cultural patrons spent a great deal of time in Paris collecting works by Monet, Brancusi and Picasso
, which are still on display in the collection today.
That bit of history aside, the Portland Art Museum lives on the South Park Blocks a grand boulevard with some of its roots in the civic design for The Tuileries/Champs-Elysees in Paris. Yet, unlike the Louvre/Tuilerties PAM hasn't really fully engaged the civic leverage inherent to the Park Blocks (which PNCA is beginning to).
To that PAM is staging The Art of The Louvre's Tuileries Garden, with the not so subtle implication that it is actively looking at its own place on one of Portland's most famous parks. Featuring works by, Pissarro, Manet, Cartier-Bresson, Coysevox, Bosio, Atget and Kokoshka the exhibition is a wide ranging and multifaceted look at the way a public space is used by and inspires visitors. This inherently civic approach filled with photography and more than a few colossal sculptures (some with bullet holes) tells a story that the museum is wisely leveraging to explore Portland's own stunning park system. Thus, instead of a vault... PAM has turned into an interpretive civic mirror for Portland to look upon its own parks with via Capture #Parklandia
The Art of The Louvre's Tuilleries Garden | June 14 - September 21
Portland Art Museum
1219 SW Park