Friday, September 22, 2006

September's 24,25,26,27,28,29,30 Swan Song

September 24

Electro Acoustic Influences from Africa @ Doug Fir Lounge

NWEAMO has had a large influence on Portland experimental music. Tonight East meets West and North meets South with Masonic & MarsBassMan, SWARMIUS, White Rainbow, , Maxime de la Rochefoucauld, Hybrid Groove Project
Doors 8, Show 9, $10

September 25

YACHT, Universe, Aaron Flint Jamison, & Wyld File @ Reed College Chapel

This blog does not usually cover music because friends at Urban Honking do a better job of it. In case you are not reading their excellent SuperCAL, some of their principals are doing a show in Reed's sublime chapel:

Free, but donations welcome to send these world warmers on the rest of their tour! 8PM

September 26

What's a Gertrude?

Organism launches their salon Gertrude tonight. It's an opportunity for creative people to get together and talk about art and whatnot. Details at With excellent sponsorship by New Deal Vodka, there is no admission charge and there will be some complementary vodka drinks. Free is good. At Vendetta on 4306 N. Williams 7PM

September 26,27

Film on '60/70's Political Activists @ Cinema Project

So long ago, as the idealistic promises of the 1950's and early 60's waned, France's colonial failures were questioned even as the all powerful United States of America overthrew foreign governments and sank deeper into Vietnam's insurgency, ultimately into a war which it lost, while almost loosing its soul, and that of its children.

Filmmaker Chris Marker was there and made this film, Le Fond de l'air est Rouge "A Grin Without A Cat" about the rise of political left in Paris, Bejing, Prague, Chile, Iran and the United States. Marker examines the street battles between police and idealists, the fall of politicians such as Richard Nixon, the assassination of Che Guevara (the formation of whose political ideas were brought to film in The Motorcycle Diaries) and Salvadore Allende, the Soviet invasion of Prague (which provides the background for The Unbearable Lightness of Being), the student riots in Paris (depicted in Bertolucci's The Dreamers, the beginning of China's Cultural Revolution, US antiwar protests (The War at Home) and the American Civil Rights Movement (Eyes on the Prize I and II).

At 3 hours it is more an impressionistic collection of impressive footage than an explanation of the left's psychic history worldwide. The Voice sums it up - skip past the Spiderman review:,hoberman,34342,20.html. Here's hoping the film will be released to video as a source of astonishing historical samples or raw material for video term papers.

Northwest Film Center’s Whitsell Auditorium [1219 SW Park Ave] 7:00 p.m. $7

September 27

Dahlia@ the Doug Fir

Homies Dahlia hold down a monthly at the Doug Fir Lounge every last Wednesday. Kieth Schreiner, with the skilz to set his music making controls for the heart of the sun, dance and have it sound great, all at the same time, live, has been a force in Portland electronica from the beginning and has created beautiful collaborations with just about everyone. Dahlia's weeklies built the good Ohm, now Kieth has a weekly at East on Thursdays. Jen Folker adds a sexy organic vibe with her soaring vocals. This brilliant vocalist has collaborated with Toby Marks (Banco de Gaia), Drumattica (TV:616) and others. Oh, and it's dancable. Stalking Jane opens. Show 9PM $6

September 28

It's last Thursday on Alberta and perhaps the last circus day without rain. No animals were harmed in this performance.

September 29, 30, October 1

Art Fair Affair @ the Jupiter Hotel Motel

Fairs are the latest thing. Miami, the Hamptons, Santa Fe, Shanghi, Havana, Milano, Basel. Freed from the social formalities of the auction circuit, they assume each city's particular cultural admixture of socializing, partying, networking, oh, and art. This one has been crafted by organizers Stewart Horodner and Laurel Gitlen to bring select out of town galleries, some Portland ones, a lot of art, Portland artists and you together in one sweet mix.

The schedule:

Friday, September 29th
4-6PM Private Collector Preview (gala ticket holders)
6-9 PM Opening Gala to benefit the PSU Graduate Lecture Series ($100)
10-1AM Artist's party featuring Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks Disco ($10 -open bar)
7PM-7PM (Saturday) Special video screening of “24 Hour Three Stooges” by Paul Collins

Saturday, September 30th
11-11:30 AM Keynote Address by Helen Molesworth, Curator of the Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus, Ohio, Sponsored by Sarah and Andrew Meigs
12-7 PM Public Hours ($5)

Sunday, Oct 1st
12-7 PM Public Hours ($5)
12-7 PM A program of video screenings selected by guest curators

There is a charge to wander the hotel's rooms, each dedicated to a gallery. It's a great opportunity though to see what is being made in the world, maybe you can see a place for your own work to fit in. Generally the gallery rooms are closed by the 10PM party Friday because the gallery folks like to party too.

All details at:

Event: 800 E Burnside

September 29, 30, October 1

Northwest Solar Expo @ Oregon Convention Center

Cultural explorers seek the leading edge, the experimental, they are the vanguard. The Convention Center's million square feet of rain cover is for mass adopters. While this event is not to the million foot level, that solar in the Northwest is approaching mass adoption is a good thing. Witness the great attendance at the sustainability tour. The show includes vendor booths and a raft of seminars. Details at
Fri & Sat 10am-7pm Sun 10am-6pm $8 per day under 12 free. Tickets at the door.

September 30

Reading Frenzy Art Benefit @ Department of Skateboarding

Reading Frenzy is Portland's OG of zines. A visit to Chloe's tiny store will never fail to uncover a new zine. comic, video, Vladmaster or Japanese thing. Chloe's sweet son, Henry, has cerebral palsy and a lot of Portland artists are kicking in for his special needs, community style. Artist friends Andi Zeisler, Anthony Capadona, Bill Branscum, Brad Adkins, Caleb Plowman, Chase Melendez, Chris Hotz, Chris Johanson, Chris Senn, Christine Shields, Dave Carnie, Dave England, David Petersen, Erik Railton, Ethan Fowler, Fran O'Connor, Jai Tanju, Jason Adams, Jeff Walls, Jim Hauser, Jo Jackson, Jon Humphries, Kim Hamblin, Martin Ontiveros, Meredith Leonard, Michael Brophy, Michael Sieben, Molly Quan, Noah Martineau, Ray Gordon, Roger Seliner, Russ Pope, Sam Coomes, Sarah Marshall, Steve Mathews, Storm Tharp, Sumaya Agha, Tara Jane O'Neil, Thomas Campbell, Thor, Tobin Yelland and Tom Greenway are all donating work.

Tonight also marks the launch of limited edition skate decks, the first by Jo Jackson and Chris Johanson. Johanson was part of the Rinder Whitney Biennial, Jackson's video piece was selected for purchase by the Portland Art Museum from the museum's biennial.

15 NE Hancock 6PM

Installation Art Show @ Disjecta

Patrick Rock, Brenden Clenaghen and Margaret Currin have curated a show of installation and sculpture by primarily out of town artists. Pictures of their works and their websites are listed at Some of the work has a halloween flavor and is consistent with Rock's sculptural aesthetic, the most successful of which was the giant interactive inflatable hot dog at the Fresh Trouble show. I will reserve judgement until I see the show, but I have a great resistance to conceptual work based on a single idea; I'm more interested in subtilty and rich context. Disjecta 320 E Burnside Opens at 7PM

Monday, September 11, 2006

September 10,13,14,16 Some Things

September 10

Church of Craft @ Doug Fir Lounge

The monthly church of craft is in session 11AM-4PM.

September 11

The New Economy of Chamber Music @ PNCA

How did classical music so effectively maneuver itself into near extinction? Brede Rørstad explores its potential for its repopulation in a free seminar "The New Economy of Chamber Music". At one time, classical music was pop music. Critics assailed Chopin: " The wildness in both the melody and harmony is for the most part excessive... We cannot imagine any musician, who has not acquired an unhealthy taste for noise, and scrambling, and dissonance, to feel otherwise than dissatisfied with the effect..." as perhaps electroacoustic, noise or microtonal music today! Hear and participate with Rørstad in plotting musics' path forward. 9:30AM-11 PNCA Free

Filmmaker on September 11 @ Audio Cinema/PICA TBA

September 11 is a day replete. Portland filmmaker Vanessa Renwick connects some of that with a film showing this evening:

"On September 11, the Oregon Department of Kick Ass presents an evening of films assembled by Vanessa Renwick which cast a meditative gaze on death in many forms. In Renwick's intense personal documentary work, edgy and grim poetry informs a deliberate and steady stare at extreme states of existence. Humans and other animals are forced to take decisive action. Everything is a matter of life and death.

Daniel Menche’s thundering live soundtrack propels her latest wildlife epic Hope and Prey. 9 is a Secret ponders mystical visitations from crows and ravens after Renwick changes her name. The found footage gem, Britton, S. Dakota is constructed solely of haunting portraits of children filmed standing in the street of a desolate town in depression era America. Also screening: two Vietnam era artifacts—Travis Wilkerson’s harrowing and hopeless National Archive, v. 1 and Bill Daniel’s Selective Service System Story, which revisits a filmmaker who shot himself in the foot on film to make a statement against the Vietnam War and to get out of the draft. The evening commences with Wilkerson’s Superior Elegy, a portrait of a 25 hour-long improvisational concert held in Duluth, Minnesota in honor of a murdered friend. Despite being scheduled for the weekend following September 11, 2001, the event’s organizers chose to perform as planned. In so doing, the event acquired an unintended poignancy. The resulting film reads almost like a prayer: quiet, formal, and full of inexplicable power."

8-9PM at Audio Cinema as part of TBA

226 SE Madison

8 PICA Members, 12 General, Free pass holders...

September 13

Mexican Butoh

Butoh is a strange and delicate thing. It is a modern dance form from Japan unlike any other movement art you have seen. It is improvised, sometimes based on images from nature. The site, though outdated, is valuable. First created in 1959 amidst the post WW2 Japanese nationalist cultural movement, of which author Mishima was a leader, butoh was wild. Now it is unknown by many Japanese, while taking root worldwide. Diego Pinion is its Mexican instance. Pinion is known for his intense workshops in which psychodrama is the entry point for creating new movement. If you are a movement artist, or curious, if you can leave aside narrative and judgement and enter a dream state of pure body imagination, this will be a worthwhile performance. If you desire more, consider seeing Sanki Juku in Seattle November 21 - they are a sublime performance group and one of the preeminent butoh performance groups in the world.

7-midnight Someday Lounge (Backspace) 125 NW 5th $10

September 14

Art @ Local.35 Store

Clothing store Local.35 shows "Seneca" - work by Erik Railton, Molly Quon and Justin Hawkins. 7-9pm.
Music by DJ Entropy.

3556 SE Hawthorne Blv

September 16

Surreal Dog Walk @ NW Portland

Whether dividing the world is useful, I've my doubts. It can be argued though that there are dog people and cat people. I fall on the dog side. I'm more interested in the medium to larger size, but I've many friends who prefer medium to small. One breed falling into this category is the west highland terrier. Yearly Portland westie guardians mount a surealistic visual conspiracy and walk their dogs en masse. The sight of a few hundred identical dogs at walk is not an hallucination. They wander NW Portland in pack - details at Begins 10AM at NW 20th and Raliegh. Free to watch

Sustainable Building Tour @ Portland

Portland's Office of Sustainable Development (that combination of words is so beautiful and sensible) sponsors "Build it Green" a tour of 19 homes, a high rise and three communiy buildings selected for their innovation in construction, materials, habitat restoration and neogemutlichkeit. The cost is $15, but $10 for people who use public transport or bikes for the tour. Details at 11AM-5PM. See the link for the solar homes tour and sustainable materials information fair which is free.

Art Crimes of Ron English @ Missing Link

Ron English is an agitprop artist. I find clowns disturbing and he does not. His work is internationally known, the subject of a documentary, we are lucky to see the work in situ. I think the value is where his career arc meets his psyche - who among our friends have the same potential?

I am not damning with faint praise here. This is solid lowbrow work. The Missing Link openings are an undiscovered great thing, bring your friends, go!

The Missing Link 3314 SE Belmont 7PM free

Indian Music @ Lewis and Clark College

We are surrounded by music. Sometimes it is deeper into a genre that we desire to explore and sometimes it is broader. Tonight you may hear North Indian classical music should you desire on sarod, a stringed instrument, and the saxophone, accompanied by tabla. The concert is sponsored by Kalakendra at Lewis and Clark College in the Evans Auditorium. $15 advance/20 door, or consider a season ticket. 7:30PM Details at and

Fetish Butoh Performance @ Someday Lounge

Butoh, the modern dance form, is not by nature dark. Often it is sublime and beautiful. Improvised, it is inspired by images. One of the founding artists, now 99 years of age, is working entirely with images of his mother, birth, and flowers.

In Portland though, the dark disturbing branch of butoh has drawn adherents. Tonight you may see a butoh fetish hybrid. Societas Insomnia performs a nightmare in which a child dreams the terror of an evil circuis master, fire performers, ritual suspension by flesh hooks and much writhing. Interestingly some of the performers embrace the dark side, and some are the sweetest people you could meet. The chorus is the butoh, the fetish performers, just themselves.

Performers include Soriah, Mizu Desierto, Malice Munz, Balance Suspension, The Fireninja, Ivizia Dakini, Cherry, Peach, Noah Mickens, Micah Perry, Synchronicity Frequency, Llewyn Máire, Lisa Newman, Germany, Pandora, Lana Guerra, Fredrick Zahl, Edifice Flesh, Yoshi Ironskin, Domina Betka Schpitz.

You may say echt, but if you are interested in today's boundaries of performance, this one may be worth your experience. Do not judge all butoh by this one though.

Someday Lounge (Backspace) 125 NW 5th
10PM-Midnight $13

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Westside Art in September

Tonight's moon approaches earth at its closest in the year's cycle. What this all means, I have no idea.

Consider opening your evening with a free performance by Three Leg Torso the gypsy chamber ensemble. They play at 6 in the Jameson Square Park at the corner of NW Johnson and 11th.

PICA's TBA festival opens with a performance at 8 by Brede Rørstad's Music Population Orchestra followed by Small Sails at 9 at Audio Cinema SE 3rd and Madison. 21 and over unfortunately, free fortunately.

Now for the visuals:

Valentines shows "Split Cities", photography by Portland and Brooklyn photographers Mikael Kennedy, Mike Powsner at, Oriana Lewton-Leopold, Sarah Meadows, Brian Slaughter at .
, Shayla Hason and Yoni Kifle collaborating with E*Rock Music by Ryan Boyle as DJ Pogostick Yankovich.
Art 6-9, open late, but bring a flashlight for arting after 9 232 SE Ankeny

Ogle shows photographs by Chelsea Mosher. Her earlier work reminds me of that of Liz Haley in that it can capture an enigmatic solo or group moment. In this work, Mosher collages her photos into perhaps surealistic compositions, rephotographed. Also showing is Philip Iosca. Both are part of the Portland Modern #4 group. 310 NW Broadway, doors close at 9.

PNCA hosts a long traveling group exhibition "Illegal Art" themed on copyright and other intellectual property issues. Sampling pop culture provides a ready emotional ingredient to new work. The question is who owns that effect? The original creator? Or is it really a phenomena in each of our psyches?
PNCA graduate Heidi Cody's "American Alphabet" was used to form the group's logotype. Portland filmmaker Todd Haynes is also part of the illegal art group on the basis of his 1987 film Superstar, exploring pop singer Karen Carpenter's fatal struggle with anorexia. The film is stop action animated with BarbieTM/KenTM dolls as the actors. When art is outlawed, only the outlaws will have art...
until 9:30 PNCA 1241 NW Johnson

Leach Gallery shows "Supernormal" sculpture and relief forks by Sean Healy. Supernormal is themed upon high school social power dynamics which are thankfully discarded by most people by age 18 at the latest.
Until 9 417 NW 9th

The Portland Art Center mega complex presents video loops accompanied by live improvisation l by Paint and Copter. Listen to soundscapes by Seth Neihil in collaboration with dancer Linda Austin.
See "The Inside Game", selections from the personal collections of Elizabeth Leach, Joel Leib, Rod Pulliam, Justin Oswald and Jeffrey Thomas, all collectors and gallerists. The artists in the collections include: David Altmejd, Chandra Bocci, James Bolton, Claire Corey, Russell Crotty, Roe Ethridge, Harrell Fletcher, Harry Fritzius, Nick Di Genova, William Kentridge, Dinh Q. Le, Frank Magnotta, Roy McMakin, Lari Pittman, Rob Pruitt, Nick & Sheila Pye, Halsey Rodman, Will Rogan, TM Sisters, Dash Snow and Pinar Yolcan. Finally, perhaps because of our damp cool winters, Portland has become somewhat of a center for encaustic painting using wax pigments that must be melted on a hotplate to use. Tonight see a show juried by Elise Wagner, Jeff Gunn and SparkPlugArt of 32 encaustic artists. 32 NW 5th

Rake Art shows work by Skyler McCaughey, Grace Luebke, April Alden. I am feeling particularly lazy so from the gallery press release:
" Skyler McCaughey's body of work, The Business of Sweetness is an exploration of what it really means to work and what work is in relation to our lives. She investigates the idea that not only do we work to make a living, but in turn the lives we lead can be defined by the way we work. She suggests that questions about goals and work performance should not be confined to the workplace, but should be asked for every aspect of our lives. This exploration of what one could call a life's work has culminated in an investigation into the lives of insects. Skyler considers insects, bees especially, as totems of industry, having an innate and insatiable work ethic. These are the icons of her work. Using constructed light boxes, etched glass, stainless steel, copper, and brass, she constructs a view into the lives of insects. Her interest in what happens when an unstoppable worker becomes exhausted is evident in the both the frenzied activity of "Punching In" and the fossilized amber stasis of "Work Environs". In these works, Skyler explores the sensations of feeling exhausted, yet simultaneously feeling capable of doing more. This is what she refers to as the work of our living: the alchemical transformation of pollen to honey.
Grace Luebke's 3-D installation/ performance art "Ephemeral Matter" is a conceptual design, symbiotically integrating form and dance in the site specific space of Rake Art Gallery. An installation of 200 yards of silacoat screen mimics the movement of shifting, slipping, and speeding momentum contained within an axis while coinciding with a butoh dance performance. Grace finds inspiration for her designs in butoh, an improvisational dance movement founded by Tatsumi Hijikata and Kazou Ohno. The performance begins slowly, and gradually picks up to a fast, edgy pace. The combination of installation with live dance performance enforces a connection between spatial design and the body. This inevitably creates an interactive connection between viewer and installation once the dance performance has ended.
April Alden's work, consists of found materials from the natural environment applied to wood or canvas by means of gesso and encaustic wax. She draws her inspiration from the found materials which then dictate her organic and geometric arrangements. This process oriented work allows her to express a childhood reminiscence of collecting plant materials and obsessively manipulating them into various shapes and patterns." 325 NW 6th

As usual the other Everett lofts are recommended.

Pulliam Deffenbaugh presents abstract contemporary baroque paintings by Brenden Clenaghen. Clenaghen adds unique icepick prick textures to his work. I like it.

Until 9 929 NW Flanders

A side trip sometime in the month is called for to see the work of mid career artist and Reed professor Geraldine Ondrizek. She samples nature and science producing large scale sculptures. This show is entitled "M168: Tracing the Y Chromosome"
Oregon College of Art & Craft, 8245 S.W. Barnes Road

Ringler's Annex is not the greatest venue for art viewing, particularly their subterranean space. But this month it is well worth the visit to see paintings by Brett and Whitney Superstar. Their styles partner well, maintaining their individuality; their subject matter is often schematic plants and animals.
1223 S.W. Stark St.