Thursday, January 31, 2008

February 20 Abandoned Mill as Urban Laboratory?

Portland is a river town. The Columbia River reaches deep into Canamerica's grain lands as does active rail. That grain is exported by ship to China, with a waystop in grain elevators on the Willamette. Daily you may see them in operation adjacent to the Steel and Broadway bridges.

Centennial Mills is a grain mill hulk north of the Broadway bridge. It sits adjacent to both the River and unending residential development in inner NW. The Portland Development Commission has received 3 proposals for transforming the mill into a park+offices+businesses. You can see the proposals at a public meeting at PNCA tonight.

More interesting is the proposal from LAB Holding of Costa Mesa. The LAB is known for their famous AntiMall which is so Costa Mesa. (The AntiMall also had free WiFi way before it was common, especially in SoCal) As LA grew with good jobs, its families moved to the 'burbs. First building out the Valley, North. When the valley was filled, family suburb seekers turned South to Orange County and Costa Mesa. When those kids grew up, they spawned an expanding surf and skate culture. Costa Mesa is filled today with companies small and large in that space.

LAB Holdings has continued to create space locally adapted to creative culture, folding in green building. That is their proposal for making the River accessible and recycling the parts of the old mill that are not falling down.

Given Portland's talent why is there not a LAB-style developer based here?

You can get a flavor of the LAB and the other conventional style proposals at a public meeting at PNCA. It's a PDC public meeting, usually not exciting, but that is how the City works, and they are interested in your comments and insights. NW Johnson at 13th 6-9PM Free

February 18 Center for Land Use Interpetation Talk

The Center for Land Use Interpretation could have only emerged in our West. Here human changes in the landscape are often dwarfed by the grand scale of our mountains, canyons, deserts and coastlines. The changes are recent too. The Center hosts very smart people to research, classify, extrapolate our use and abuse of the landscape. They publish the results and put on documentary exhibits. Ever seeking new insight, they operate an artists residency at a partially abandoned military base in remote Utah, where pilots trained to drop the first atomic bomb on Japan. It is adjacent to an active bombing range, filled with uncountable unexploded bombs. They have an outpost in the Mojave for researchers and occasional exhibitions and a new East Coast outpost in Troy. The Center's Culver City office hosts exhibitions, a library and geographic databases. Their varied projects have included the Greenland, Antarctic stations, wireless towers, atmospheric nuclear tests, mining, sewer pipes, videos made by cameras attached to livestock and a myriad of other fascinating and obscure meditations. The Center for Land Use Interpretation's founder Matthew Coolidge speaks at the PSU art lecture series tonight, 5th Ave Cinemas 510 SW Hall Room 92 7:30PM (The earlier you arrive the less chance to sit on he floor) Free

February 11 Pecha Kucha #2 and Drawing

Drawing has undergone a resurgence. From the mundane to the profound. Emily Prince spans both in a good way. "Familiar" are drawings of objects from Prince's living space, grouped. Sadly profound are Prince's "Memorial Drawings", drawings of each soldier killed in Iraq, mapped by hometown. Memorial Drawings was selected for the Venice Biennale. Prince speaks at the PSU artist lecture series. Early arrival suggested as it's been SRO. At the 5th Ave Cinemas 510 SW Hall Room 92 7:30PM Free

Pecha-Kucha emerged in the creative community in Japan to present primarily visual material influencing designers and artists across language boundaries. Thanks Teruo Kurosaki and John Jay for cluing us in. Its Portland instantiation is organized by urban design architecture house Works Partnership. So far it has hewed to the urban design theme, physical, political and social. Tonight's organizing thought is "Hidden and Apparent Constructs". The first one was packed as has been a similar program Ignite, emerging from the software book publishing and open source community, albeit with a more random focus. Tonight's Pecha-Kucha is at Imago Theater 17 SE 8th 7:20PM by donation

February 9 Hip Hop is Life not A Genuine Imitation

And we are living it. It is a powerful organizing force for identity and one of its threads has always been positive political change. This event brings it home. The Portland Black Intelligencer and the Hip Hop Congress are organizing "It’s Bigger than HIP HOP", the community's 2nd Annual Youth Summit. Longtime local hip hop activist Mic Crenshaw teams with Seattle's very active Hip Hop Congress for a day of workshops and an address by elder statesman Professor Griff. Later in the evening there is a performance by local artists. For more information call (503) 781-5313 or email pbitruth @ yahoo . com.

Genuine Imitation, one of the Everett Station's more active galleries has graduated. They have moved to St Johns' Northern frontier. To celebrate, they present "Lost and Found: A Show About Love". A second copywriting award this month is deserved: "Our lovely artists include Ashley Armbruster, whose work emphasizes the importance of things we hold dear like our hearts, our trinkets and our friends, illustrated with chubby cheeks and cupcakes; Kimmie Hutchins, whose paintings feature playful monsters dancing with robots in the sky, and children frolicking with oversized bumble bees on a hillside; Kendra Binney, who illustrates a world draped in memories, remorse, and fragile realities, evoking both nostalgia and contempt; and Kara Burke, whose work features a cast of big-eyed characters tackling misadventures". Also showing are Tom Luedecke, Ashley G, Not Too Pink, Ubiki, Chris Brindley, Creative Thursday, Brownington Forest, LilyMoon, Jun seo Hahm, and Joom. 8926 N. Lombard 5PM-9 Free

February 7 Art Openings Westside +

Portland's bike culture is varied and likely you are part of it. We have bikes who can haul heavy loads, even moving people from one apartment to another, a dynamic oh so sought messenger group that holds bike polo in the mud and mad alley cats, Zoobomber gravity players, fixie aficionados, velodrome and Fairmount-Skyline spandex racers, safe routes to schools advocates, tall bikers, the baby trailers, custom frame wranglers; more for sure. Documentation of this becomes a show, Teams of Portland, at the local ad agency. Four days only. W+K 224 NW 13th Thurs 6PM-9, Fri 10AM-6PM, Sat/Sun 12Noon-6 Free

Portland painter Molly Vidor is a master of lush still life and abstract work. Past work has spanned the tonal range, often with black backgrounds, fierce highlights and a sensual clear glaze over the finished work. This show, Destroyer, is a continuation, more abstract, and sometimes adding the suggestion of figurative observer. The work has a dreamlike emotion that some may enter and others may not register. Also in the PDX Window Project, a large display window viewable 24x7, is Artocracy, project by Portland artist Megan Murphy, to sell prints online at a great price and with maximum proceeds to the artists. A virtuous cycle. At PDX Contemporary Art 925 NW Flanders Closes early, 8PM

Paul Missal has trained generations of Portland painters at PNCA, that is 25 year's worth. Yale schooled, he founded the Blackfish Gallery coop in 1978 when the Portland's slim contemporary art world comprised the Portland Art Museum, PNCA, OCAC and Arlene Schnitzer's Fountain Gallery (-1986), later subsumed by Fountain gallerist Laura Russo into the Laura Russo Gallery. At Blackfish, Paul Missal shows his own work tonight. Though Missal paints still lifes and landscapes, he is primarily known for sensitive portraits. See and meet the master. At Blackfish Gallery 420 NW 9th

I like minimalism and conceptual work as well as the next, arguably more. Nonetheless unique figurative work that touches is a love too. I dig the energy of Superflat, no apologies, and collect it. One such figurative artist is Kendra Binney who shows "in better light" at Compound/Just Be Toys this month. Pacific Rim Binney is tapped into the kawaii-style, her figures have preternaturally large eyes. This is perfect fit for the illustration-style work so successively championed by Compound. Binney shows worldwide, from originals to very reasonably priced prints. At Compound-Just Be Toys 107 NW 5th Avenue

Artist Gretchen Vaudt shows drawings at Valentines. Til 9, lights on, after Vaudt spins and Al James, aka The Un-phased, from Delorian plays. 232 SW Ankeny lateish

Stumptown has distinct curators for its downtown, Division and Belmont instantiations; resulting in distinct vibes at each - see yourself. This month the show downtown is Sacred Pop: Exploring Text Through Collaborative Processes. 3 collaborations share walls: Todd + Craft show oil paintings of landscapes, painted under the McLuhanesque tutelage of painting 1.5 phenom Bob Ross; Gary Weseman and Amy Steel show "A Penny For Your Thoughts" which includes and audio piece; Philip Cheaney and Laura Aiken show "You Are What You Sing" portraits of pop singers in Dymo lettering tape. 128 SW 3rd

This is too good to not note. Artists are the canaries in the coal mine of culture. Forever they have been critics-commentators on the leading edge of culture as noted by MacArthur winner Dave Hickey. Picasso was an early innovator and critic. The issue in his time was the Spanish Civil War. It is argued that the first world war, WWI, marked the transition to modern war, targeting civilians, aka people. So sad. (note my home was built in 1918 by a Spanish Civil War volunteer and a relative served in WWI, surviving it; many of his colleagues, sadly, did not) Artist Picasso, modded earlier work into the mural Guernica. This artwork is a touchpoint into the horror of total war, targeting civilians, to this day. To see it full scale pierces the heart. Portland State shows the preliminaries - Picasso's artist studies, which resulted in the final work. It is so apropos in the time of war and saber rattling. PSI shows 42 reproduction sketches for Guernica. At the PSU Littman Gallery in Smith Center. Free

Always recommended are the DeSoto Block and the Everett Block. The DeSoto Block encompasses the Contemporary Crafts Museum, always free; Blue Sky / Nines Gallery- for conceptual work, Augen and the Charles Hartman Gallery. It is easy to see it all on opening night and through the month.

The Everett Block is bounded by NW Everett, Flanders, Broadway and 6th. Most of the live-work space are open first Thursday only. So see it until about 10PM.

Each venue, for visual arts, and for music, has its vibe. Brand. One of Holocene's vibes has been Portland's art community. Tonight they tap that with an art show by Cory Smith, Sarah Gottesdiener, Olivia Edith, Chloe Richard, Wesley Younie, Bradley Royce, Kjerstin Rossi and Hooliganship. That is accompanied by a fashion show by Denwave, Luxury Jones and Stand Up Comedy. (!) Musical contributions by Glass Candy, Fleshtone (!!!), and a myriad of DJ's. 9PM-late $8

February 5 Lucy Orta Speaks at Reed

Fashion communicates a complex message at a distance. So too does the best art. Lucy Orta studied fashion, expanding into artwork, architecture, installation and sculpture. All focused on social issues, such as sustainability, human rights, living standards, nationality, social connection and exclusion. She works solo and with her partner Jorge Orta, showing extensively, worldwide and teaching at a top school, the London University of the Arts in a very progressive College of Fashion.

Early works were experiments in clothing which were later echoed in the work of Kosuke Tsumura's Final Home, (.) and Mary Mattingly (.) and Seattle's Susan Robb (.). Orta is more explicitly political.

Later work includes interconnected garments, machines, political work referencing the Iraq war, and a series of fabric igloo tents installed in Antarctica, where countries collaborate on science research, including on climate and fundamental physics.

Food+Water are social art works. One food project collected fresh fruits and vegetables discarded as overripe or with cosmetic defects by sellers at the greenmarkets of Paris. The produce was transformed into a communal meal by top chef volunteers. The project was repeated in a depressed farm town in the French countryside. Water is life, so necessary. Plants are brilliant, absorbing any old water and purifying it. Humans are the reverse. We are so lucky here with pretty pure water on tap. Not so in many parts of the world. Orta developed a sculptural small scale water purification system. Installed in a museum in Venice, it piped water from the very dank Grand Canal and transformed it into drinking water. Orta is working on incorporating the project sensitively into the real lives of villagers in Burkina Faso; approaching relevance from the art direction, compared to approaching it from the technology direction as does Amy Smith.

Orta speaks at Reed College in the Vollum Lecture Hall 7PM Free

February 4 Mundane Journeys May Be Not So Mundane Plus a Talk on Nothing

San Francisco artist Kate Pocrass is a social practice artist and photographer. Pocrass leads viewers on self guided tours, dubbed "Mundane Journeys", perhaps similar to the work of Janet Cardiff and George Bures Miller. Cardiff-Millers work I think of as documentary, while Pocrass places more emphasis on self selected viewer-participants finding direct experience. Maybe the PSU social practice students will show her their Portland world. Pocrass speaks at the PSU art lecture series, 5th Ave Cinemas 510 SW Hall Room 92 7:30PM (The earlier you arrive the less chance to sit on he floor) Free

Earlier in the day, Molly Dilworth discusses Nothing and wins the copywriting award of the month:

""Photos’re better than nothing, but things’re better than photos ‘cause the things themselves were part of what was there.
–David Mitchell, Black Swan Green

What are we looking for and what are we doing here? If you scratch the surface of most artists’ writings, the answer is always the same: we are trying to feel, to move and be moved; to find a way to transcend this life, this body, this mind. Neil Young said “everybody knows this is nowhere”—we’re in a limbo, a center point from which we send sorties to find that something which surrounds—something other than this nowhere.

The subject of the lecture is nothing: what it means—in a world full of too much, all the time—to make nothing. How does one turn something into nothing—or nothing into something—an important question since this alchemy is the essence of creating. Dilworth looks at a variety of models—from Emma Kunz to Brian Eno, Alex Katz to Martin Creed—to think through what we are doing when we make things.

In the modern world we live in air-conditioned suburbs where history and ritual are jettisoned, we have no spirit quest or sweat lodge. The context has changed but the search–and the tools–have not.

Molly Dilworth is an artist and curator who lives and works in Brooklyn, New York. Dilworth has exhibited nationally and internationally including, Deitch Projects, Participant, Inc., Exit Art, X-Girl and Artists Space in New York and BM Suma Contemporary Art Center, Istanbul, Turkey, and the Melbourne Art Center. In 2006 Dilworth curated the interactive exhibition “The Great American Store(age)” at Spring Gallery in DUMBO and “The Searchers”, a show with performances and catalog for the Elizabeth Foundation Gallery in NYC.

Dilworth will return to PNCA along with Amoreen Armetta to curate the group show, The Searchers in the Feldman Gallery + Project Space April 3 – May 24. “The Searchers” uses the construct of a first time eBay seller to explore the way that people connect, or don’t connect, through technology—websites, email, letters, newspaper, books, iPods…""

At PNCA Room 201 4PM Free

February 2 Group Show Limelight

Local curator Jeff Jahn shows artists Philippe Blanc, Marne Lucas and Salvatore Reda. Reda samples pop culture figure Dean Martin. Blanc is known for sculpture installations and for this show has constructed an outhouse as part of an exploration of what is quintessentially French. Lucas' dramatic self portraits are often social comments. All at the Clackamas Community College Alexander Gallery • 19600 Molalla Avenue, Oregon City. Opens 4PM-6. Free

February 1 Wild West We are in It

Are you a native? Me, I'm a Midwest migrant, attracted by the West's mystical mountains, oceans and hot springs, to say nothing of its political independence and progressiveness. So region is special. Psychographic. Psychic even.

Tapping that, Gallery Homeland presents a show of photography, curated by Todd Johnson, Wild Wild West. Post the Civil War, the DC government sent war-trained photographers West, accompanying survey teams. Rousseau's transcendental philosophy's is represented in their work. It was thought that at, the time, that the West's sublime landscapes were proof positive of a god. So ironic that we have tried our best, in the mode of Walter Prescott Webb's thesis' to destroy it.

In Homeland's show, artists and their themes include: Mark Hooper who reenacts Lewis and Clark expedition scenes; Timothy Hursley imaging brothels of Nevada; Ethan Jackson: spaghetti Western, signs, symbols, and symptoms; David Levinthal: wild West, toy cowboys deconstructed historic icons; Marne Lucas: logging pin-up photographs; Richard Misrach: shows a photo of a military officer on a desert campout; Pipo Nguyen-duy: from Vietnam, now here, reprises formal portraits of 19th century Chinese immigrants who worked to construct Oregon's railroads, now himself the subject; Lori Nix: disaster photographs, blending truth and illusion; Shawn Records: ironic and anecdotal photographs of the suburbs; German Berthold Steinhilber shows cinematicly-lit nightime ghost towns.

So this is a show you should see, on its frontier opening. Gallery Homeland Check their website for the showings until March. 2505 SE 11th x Division. 6PM-9. Free

Friday, January 25, 2008

January 31 Altman Way Back Films Meet Globetrekker as Art

Director Robert Altman is known for ensemble casts and on-set improvisation. That is a lot of risk, and the magic, if it works, is in edit. Maybe like real myspace life? Isn't that what writers do too? Thus inspired, writer Jon Raymond hosts a Robert Altman double feature. The films California Split and Popeye are 80's, coke addled in their making, relics of a period, when free trade ment free trade in psychobiopharmaceuticals from Southern neighbors. We have gone so far since then? Raymond is cofounder of Plazm Magazine and author of quintessentially NW literature. This is an intimate event in Small A Projects back gallery, repleate with popcorn and refreshments. Meet other creatives over films curated by artists, free. At Small A Projects 1430 SE 3rd 7PM Free

Rerarato is a private home. DIY-style, they host art shows and experimental music in their front room sometimes. Just inviting some friends over to talk and share culture. So it is unfortunate that Rererato finds itself under scrutiny by the City for being a business, which their profit and loss deny so severely. So visit, but be a friend, not a statistic. If autoparking, do it on on 42nd, don't bug the neighbors, whisper and don't drop any random litter. Let's make their-our-your home sustainable.

Tonight Rererato has invited friend-photographer Michael Cogliantry. He traveled in India by rickshaw and other locally optimized transport, over 2000km, photo documenting his experience meeting India's ancient-modern culture. Cogliantry represents the new admixture of commercial and creative projects as personal brand for hire. So, though India is far from Africa, Cogliantry brands this project as Hearts [sic] of Darkness meets Borat". In this series, his trademark white attire is so apropos. In dusty poor countries, clean white clothes represent luxury, provided by legion subworkers, as were the pyramids, art too today.

At Rererato 5135 NE 42nd x Sumner 7PM Free

January 30 Fashion Show Inspired by a Museum

Portland's fashion world plays well with our creative art, music and design worlds. The fashion ecosystem here enfolds thrifty reconstructors, original-small run makers, mid-small size labels that sell far beyond Portland, venture backed brands hoping for sustainable growth, the industrial giants, sustainable fabric suppliers, small shops, academic programs, knitters and crafters. Fashion shows are part of that ecosystem too. They are labor intensive to produce, but can draw paying crowds of a thousand. The beauty of a fashion show is that the audience is encouraged to be on its best behavior, ideally in clothing by local designers. A virtuous cycle.

Tonight, the Museum of Contemporary Craft hosts a fashion show organized by Lisa Radon. Radon blogs daily on Portland fashion, design and culture at her site UltraPDX. For Action/Re-Action local designers have made work inspired by items in the Museum's collection. It's a good complement to the current jewelery show and an opportunity for the Museum's dynamic curator Namita Wiggers to engage another facet of the Portland creative community.

The space is not too large, so reservations at 503-223-2654 are recommended. At the Museum of Contemporary Craft 725 NW Davis x Park $10 7PM

January 28 State of the Union Sellout Organizing

You have some great choices this Monday (!)

The Bus Project is a group of people interested enough in politics to work at it. A non profit, they register voters statewide, host educational lectures and train the next generation of political activists to become staffers and (gasp) politicians. Really great smart people. They like fun and tonight have organized a game of bingo around the State of the Union address by George Bush. The address always has its formulaic aspects, aka traditions: seating arrayed by party, who claps when, the acknowledgment of heroes, a generally upbeat tone and the launch of new initiatives. The Bus Project has organized the search for formula, by the audience, you, into a bingo game. If you would like to participate, come by early to get your card and the rules. At Roots organic brewery 1520 SE 7th 5:45PM rules and get your bingo card, 6:00 State of the Union Speech Free

I have mixed thoughts on labor unions. In history they have produced great change. Yet in many industries their formation is a sad signifier of a lack of communication and respect, a spirit of working together to accommodate rapid changes for the customer. Nonetheless, one of the "new unions" is SEIU. Their dynamic president, Andy Stern speaks tonight. It is at the First Congregational Church 1126 SW Park, 7:30PM Free union members, non profit employees, students. $5.15 for everyone else RSVP

The PSU lecture series hosts impresario Andrew Dickson tonight. Artist Dickson performs his life with the assistance of PowerPoint, instructing acolytes on how to become an EBay Power seller or how to sell out. Dickson is always entertaining and insightful, you will not be bored. Arrive early for a seat. 5th Ave Cinemas 510 SW Hall Room 92 7:30PM Free

January 26 Psychoanalysis Skinner Box Rocks

Artist provocateur Patrick Rock has converted his Interstate house-storefront into an itinerant gallery; always challenging work and tonight is no exception. Austrian artist Johann Neumeister, member of the arts group Bad Beuys, interacts with you tonight in Psychopsychoanalysis. No guarantees of a cure though. At ROCKSBOX 6540 N Interstate x Rosa Parks Way-Portland Blvd. 7PM on Free

January 25 Tilt is Two

I usually do not report in detail Everett Station Loft openings because it is easier to just go see them. Many are only open First Thursday. Tilt is open weekends and by appointment consistently, and consistently shows critically curated work, often hard to sell sculpture installation. Tonight they celebrate two years of presenting challenging shows. Stop by. Tilt Gallery Everett side 7-11PM Free

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

January 24 Trends in Designing Elizabeth Taylor

Small A Projects continues its free film series as imagined by artists. Last week experimental musics accompanied Fantasia live. Tonight artist Storm Tharp has edited together intense scenes from little known Elizabeth Taylor films Boom, Suddenly Last Summer, and A Place in the Sun and offers his thoughts on Taylor's "crazed" acting and "badness". Meow! Popcorn and refreshments. At Small A Projects 1430 SE 3rd 7PM Free

Sole exponent of modern design on crafty outsider style Alberta, Office PDX hosts irregular design talk gettogethers. As collaboration and community are Portland's currency, that is a great thing! Tonight they host a discussion "5 Top Design Trends for 2008". Panelists Michael DiTullo, Core 77 contributor and Converse basketball design director; Rebecca Huston, director of design strategy for Twenty Four Seven; Lisa Radon, editor and creator of Ultra PDX; and David Hawkins, VP of brand-creative strategies for Umpqua Bank provide their views. RSVP required to At Office PDX 2204 NE Alberta 6PM-8 Free

January 23 Film and Politics

We are in the political season, or as they call it, the season of change. In Portland we have public financing for elections in which the city matches candidate contributions from small individual donations. One candidate sponsored a hip hop dance battle. Tonight city hall candidate John Branam raises money by donation at an otherwise free film showing.

The film is the Academy Award nominated documentary Street Fight. It is the true story of African American Cory Booker, educated at Stanford, Yale and Oxford who returns home to run for mayor of a depressed Newark. Disproving the sentiments expressed by a soulful Lou Rawls in his song "You Can't Go Home No More", Booker settled into the projects to live and campaigned with all his heart.

You can see the film at Mississippi Studios, 3939 N. Mississippi (21+) 7PM Free

Thursday, January 17, 2008

January 18 WAR Themed Art

Jim Riswold is not a stranger to politically infused art. He is a communicator provocateur with a background in advertising at W+K. Maybe a character from the advertising themed novel Palladio. So he's the perfect curator for a group show themed WAR. Artists include Susan Seubert, Eva Lake, Michael Spafford, David Levinthal, John Wesley, William Anthony and Riswold himself. The show is in North Portland's Guestroom Gallery 4114 N Vancouver 6PM-9 Free

January 17 Live Fantasia

An established gallerist recently told me that the only art that sells in Portland is narrative or pictorial. Thus, that Small A Projects has consistently shown challenging work by local and international artists is bold. The gallery primarily sells its work outside Portland. Small A has also compiled a library of video work, viewable by appointment. The gallery has hosted some great events, such as a showing of Velvet Goldmine, with the director in attendance. They are beginning a new film series this evening with Fantasia. It is fluid old school hand drawn animation. The original orchestral soundtrack by the Philadelphia Orchestra under the direction of Leopold Sowkowski was stunning, though the recording technology in 1940 primitive. No matter, because tonight the score will be provided live by
Danny Sasaki and Waren Lee (Problems), Kelvin Pittman, Tara Jane O’Neil, Liz Harris (Grouper), Micheal Whittaker (Lemon Bear) and Brian Mumford (Dragging an Ox through Water). Thanks to artist Dana Dart-McLean for producing tonight's event! At Small A Projects 1430 SE 3rd 7PM Free

Friday, January 11, 2008

January 14 PSU Lecture Amy Franceschini

Art, design and social change form a continuum today. Some artists are comfortable navigating the whole space and Amy Franceschini is one. Futurefarmers is one of her projects in which she and collaborators explore issues in the environment, energy, urban architecture and play through residencies, sculpture, installation and intervention. Some projects have had a mad scientist aesthetic with a message, such as Gameboys powered by lemon trees or homebrew hydrogen energy generators powered by photosynthesis. Others package information in beautiful design like their local farm project F.R.U.I.T.. Fingerprint Maze personalizes gaming, adds a social element, while making a comment on identity and security. Design oriented companies hire them from time to time to do projects too. So artists can be paid to change the world through play and beauty. Yes! Franceschini speaks at the PSU art lecture series, 5th Ave Cinemas 510 SW Hall Room 92 7:30PM Free

January 12 Homeland Music Videos

Karl Lund has been producing a series of film and video showings: Odds and Ends. This one is of music videos made by and of Portlanders. It is reported that the inspiration for MTV was founder Bob Pittman's thesis that a sequence of seemingly unrelated images could form a poetic emotional field when coupled with pop music. 25 years later, the result is history. Music videos quickly became an experimental cinema genre and training ground for image makers with modest budgets and musicians unafraid of cinematic creative risk. Lund has pulled together local imagemakers including Autumn Andel, John Bacone, Chris Bennett, Uli Beutter, Kara Blake, Melanie Brown, Grace Carter, Allen Cordell, Ali Cotterill, Nate Goodman, Ron Gassaway, Gretchen Hogue, Whitey McConnaughey, Matt McCormick, Mike Mudd, Chioke Nassor, Tyrone Olsen, Ted Passon, Vanessa Renwick, Cat Tyc and Adam Long, and Rob Tyler. All at Gallery Homeland. At 2505 SE 11th Avenue x Division Doors 7, vids 8, $7

January 11 Back Room Quality Thrift

Brilliant company, edifying speakers, tasty music and fine food have been the hallmarks of The Back Room series. The Back Room is now a seamless collaboration between Mathew Stadler, writing in sunny Mexico, and Reed Gallery director Stephanie Snyder. Most events sell out, including this one, but keep an eye on the Backroom website or sign up for future mailings. Tonight guests are the principals of Plazm. Joshua Berger, designer, founder and creative director of the Plazm protoplasm, Jon Raymond, writer, founder and coeditor, Tiffany Lee Brown, writer, producer and co-editrix, all speak of the Plazm process and their inspiration. At Podkrepa Hall 2116 N Killingsworth 6:30. $48 (sold out)

Chicago photographer Brian Ulrich opens Thrift in person at Quality Pictures this evening. Ulrich's Thrift documents scenes familiar to denizens of the bins, the Portland Goodwill outlet store, where excess consumption is recycled into excess consumption. Thrift is part of the artist's larger series on shopping entitled Copia. Ulrich is a mashup of Gursky's 99 Cent and Chris Jordan's Intolerable Beauty. Tonight you may bring a piece of clothing to donate, its fate unknown. Refreshments. At Quality Pictures 916 NW Hoyt 6-9PM Free

Friday, January 04, 2008

January 7 Rauschenberg Rephotographs Atget's Paris

I have never visited Paris, but I am digging lately the film Paris, je t'aimie, love stories and observations on the human condition shot in every neighborhood of the City of Light. (Someone should do the same for Portland!) Studying historic photography, I came across the documentary photography Eugène Atget who photographed Paris from 1888 to 1927, continuing the work of photographic pioneer Felix Nadar. Christopher Rauschenberg has visited Paris, often, photographing back streets, flea markets and landscapes. He has for some time also rephotographed Atget's Paris, same place, different time. Tonight he speaks of the experience and signs a book on Atget's Paris, rephotographed. Rauschenberg's book is Paris Changing, Princeton University Press. Perhaps in 100 years we will find the same fascination in rephotographs of Portland's Grid Project, founded by Rauschenberg, also a founder of the Blue Sky Gallery. At Powells City of Books 10th and W. Burnside 7:30PM Free

January 7 PSU Lecture Series - Temporary Services

There is an interchange of artists and inspiration between Portland and Chicago. Many Portland artists were schooled there and social performance groups M.O.S.T and Red 76 have connections there. Thus it is apropos that the PSU Art Department Lecture Series, under the direction of Harrell Fletcher, a social artist himself, has invited Marc Fisher, a cofounder of Chicago's Temporary Services to speak tonight. They have many awesome projects documented on their website. Take a look, if it interests you, hear the talk. At the 5th Ave Cinemas 510 SW Hall Room 92 7:30PM Free

January 5-6 Children of the Revolution - Art and Bands

Art, music, beer (and conversation) would sum up this annual festival at Audiocinema. That is a good thing, and really the basis for art events from lowbrow to the Museum. It's the conversation that matters, and as noted by Dave Hickey, conversation advances art's aesthetics faster than society advances. That is the power of art. "Art, music, beer" was also the motto the Blue Gallery which showed Portland artists and alongside bands. Continuing this Portland creative tradition, curators Cassandra Adams and Holly Johnson have put together an art show by E«ROCK, SOHALE DAROUIAN, DAN ANDERSON , CHRIS JOHANSON, TARA JANE ONEIL, SARA ROBBIN, WILLIAM WACKER, LIZ HALEY, CHRIS HELD, KRISTIE LOUDERBOUGH, REBECCA SHELLY, COREY SMITH, YONI KIFLE, LAWRENCE ROBBIN, JHORDAN DAHL, JO JACKSON, BRIAN PIETROWSKI, MATT MCCORMICK, MIDORI HIROSE, CHRIS RIDER, ROXANNE JACKSON, JENEVIVE TATIANA, SARA GOTTESDIENER, ANDREW ELLIS, MAURA ARRAJ, JOSHUA KERMIET, MORGAN ALEXANDER RITTER, ANGELA WILLS, ARYA BENNER, EMILY PLEWS, ADAM BAZ, RYAN JACOB SMITH, KYLA CECH, PETE CHALEK, BIRCH COOPER, IAN HAWK, TARYN TOMASELLO, and BRAD ADKINS. Some of these are new Renaissance creatives who operate in the visual art, music, film and writing worlds altogether. There are art workshops 2:30PM-5:30. Many bands playing from about 6PM to late each day with the art on view. There is also an artists reception 1-2:30PM Saturday. All details At Audiocinema 226 SE Madison 5:30PM-Late each day, Advance tickets at Jackpot or at the door. $12, or $20 both days.

January 4 Eastside Art Openings

In the 811 Block

Photographer Alicia J. Rose presents Fairytales, inspired by select stories of the brothers Grimm. Hansel and Gretel, Little Red Riding Hood, Snow White. Someday perhaps the underlying basis in brain science for myth's appeal will be discovered. Until then we are left with our individual relationships with childhood myths and fairy tales. Rose writes "Once upon a time, long, long ago, a little girl lost the ability to remember her dreams. In picture books, and aging tomes she took shelter in the grandiose images they generated in her imagination. The girl grew up, making music with an accordion that she always described as "soundtracks to films in her head." Eventually the pictures she was making music for became larger than her music could properly accompany or her small head could possibly contain. The girl then took up another instrument, a camera, that allowed her the proper sight necessary to capture the stories that had been running amok in her skull for years, and share them with other sets of eyes everywhere." Rose, an accomplished musician, is a chemistry-based photographer. She has photographed many musicians in trademark style, saturated color and cinematic lighting. This work continues that.

At Grass Hut Gallery

Pepe Moscoso shows collage and diorama documenting "life's everyday dramas". Redux is the queen of reuse, transforming valuable materials, normally discarded into crafty objects, one of sustainability's vectors. The art shown there is often based on this idea too. At Redux

The curator at Moshi-Moshi is now at Compound and Moshi-Moshi plans to relocate into a space adjacent to Billy Galaxy possibly continuing art under a new curator.

All at 811 E Burnside

Hiroshi Watanabe shows photographs from the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, that would be the North, perhaps one of the few places left on the planet lonely of trekkers. "Ideology in Paradise" depicts a little of that closed land that now is opening up with limited visitations by families separated over 50 years ago.

At Newspace Photo 1632 SE 10th

Well known lowbrow artist Charlie Alan Kraft shows paintings and prints at The Destroy Store. Music and beer. At The Destroy Store 1712 E Burnside

Artspace 2000 SE 7th is back in external operation with a group show by its artists. Now dubbed Bite Studio it is open 6-9ish.

And Westside, Tilt Project Space, known for consistently challenging installation work opens a Jesse Hayward show. Biennial slectee Hayward is not shy about bright work, a welcome brightening flav in Portland's dark winter! At Tilt Gallery and Project Space 625 NW Everett #106 7PM-10

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

January 3 Westside Art Openings

The Everett Station lofts, and diametric coanchors Ogle and Rake, occupy the block bounded by NW Everett and Flanders, Broadway and 6th. The lofts' individualistic galleries represent the explorations of residents in their social-artistic sphere - it is arts' evolutionary edge. A worthwhile stop this evening as few are open the rest of the month.

The DeSoto block is bounded by NW Davis, Park and Broadway. The galleries there, including the Contemporary Craft Museum, are long time sustainable galleries and always worth stopping to see, and open throughout the month.

Quality Pictures continues "It's Kind of Endless", Portland artists previously noted. 916 NW Hoyt

Hap Tivey is a longtime Portland light artist. Portland sees little of this medium, ditto video. Both share challenges to conserve. Lighting technology is changing as Edison's tungsten filament vacuum glass gives way to light emitting diodes. Although Tivey is no Dan Flavin, James Turrell or Robert Irwin, his work is welcome in dark Portland, and, for this show, his work incorporates LED's with their 10,000 hour lifetime! For local artists to advance, and bring collectors, seeing more light art her would be better. At Elizabeth Leach Gallery 417 NW 9th

Kristin Timken explores the limits of landscape photography, at Pulliam Deffenbaugh 929 NW Flanders

Two longtime Portland artists, JD Perkin and Henk Pender show at Laura Russo. Perkins is known for sculptural multiples and the trailer in the woods tableau at the Portland Art Center. Pender paints in oil and watercolor with a individualistic, maybe a little dark style and has been commissioned for some large public works. At Laura Russo

Hiedi Kirkpatrick continues photographs themed on the body at Chambers Gallery. 207 SW Pine

Compound in presents a show Neulovers, presaging Valentines Day. Japan is unencumbered by some of our taboos, social pressure there substitutes for reducing antisocial behavior. More effectively. So this work is not J-taboo at all. In our, even West Coast, legal constricts, this show is open to those 18 and older. Silly. The group show artists include Ina Takayuki, Dennis Hayes IV, TRIP aka Meg Hasegawa, Tadaomi Shibuya, Kaz, Teriyaki, Kosuke Ikeda, the infinitely detailed Neri, Ippei Gyobu, ENA, Cho-Chan, Mitsuru Saigusa, Momoyon , Megumi Terada, Maya Nukumizu, Sayaka, Makiko Sugawa, Micca Icca, Yuji Moriguchi, Pomme Chan, J.W. Howard, Marguerite Sauvage, Panni Malek, Kozyndan, Yoshihisa Hakai, Edwin Ushiro, Richard Hogg, Naja Conrad, Christina Vantzou, Lydia Bradbury, Shannon McGlothin, Eveline Tarunadjaja, Peter Vattanatham. All at Compound/ Just be Toys 107 NW 5th x Davis

And on the Eastside, outsider style artist Chris Haberman shows paintings. At 23 Sandy 623 N.E. 23rd Ave x Sandy

January 3 and 10 Butoh Workshop

Portland and Arizona butoh artist Mizu Desierto [water desert] presents a strictly participatory butoh workshop two Thursday evenings. Butoh is a modern Japanese performance art form. Often improvisational, the intent is to leave behind the way we move daily and discover something new. Well done, the effect is electrifying for the viewer, but it is a rare thing and the audience specialized. Mizu has studied extensively with Kazuo Ohno and Diego Pinon, but her performance aesthetic is more similar to that of Harupin-Ha and Dairakudakan. For this workshop, the gateway to creating new movement is returning to childhood, one of Ohno's themes. More information at

At FlowForm Studio (Watershed Warehouse) 5040 SE Milwaukie Avenue 6-10PM $60 one night $110 both