Saturday, November 29, 2014

November 29 Old Town

This is a film curiosity, not a visual art event.

Once upon a time, some of Portland's spiffaritic neighborhoods were gritty. Arrive a young filmmaker, Gus Van Sant. He made his first released feature film in those backstreets, Mala Noche.

Speed up to today. The filmmaker is loved by actors for his subliminal directing style, to the Academy, and to audiences for heart-rendering films, some difficult.

Tonight there is a showing of Mala Noche. The film was based on the autobiography of wild man poet-artist Walt Curtis, who will answer questions at the screening. One of the film's settings was the Satyricon Club in Old Town. Bruno, the long time doorman there, also will be there to relate the stories behind the film and the neighborhood.

Mala Noche, Portland history, at the PSU Fifth Avenue Cinema. 510 SW Hall 7:30PM. Free PSU community, $3 other students $4 everybody cash only

Thursday, November 27, 2014

November 28 Light

There is a closing for the Light Wash installation tonight, with performances on the installation by Jesse Mejía in collaboration with Lucy Yim, Christi Denton, Edward Sharp, Jason Plumb, Alex Norman and Charles Buckingham. At Composition 625 NW Everett #102 (6th side) 7PM-10 Free

Sunday, November 23, 2014

November 23 Blue Surface

Arielle Adkin has Blue Print Series. It resembles an archaic soft printing process, blue, on paper. One of the earliest photographic processes, invented in 1842, it was the method for reproducing architectural blueprints before pen and inkjet plotters. Also called cyanotype, it has a long history in the photographic world. Adkin makes her images with paint, many include wallpaper-like patterns in tonal blues. At Stumptown 128 SW 3rd. 4PM-6 Free

Pure Surface is a performance series combining spoken word reading, movement performance and video. Performers tonight are Kaia Sand, text; Catherine Egan, movement; and Hanna Piper Burns, film.
Pure Surface at Valentines 232 SW Ankeny. Doors 6:00PM, performance 7 sharp Free

Thursday, November 20, 2014

November 22 Bouy

FRONT is a broadsheet about contemporary dance and ideas, primarily written by dancers themselves. Today they launch their latest edition ED4:BUOY! So despite that they, to our chagrin, hew to all caps text design tactic, we recommend the event as a creative meetup, and a chance to get a copy or distribute them to your interested friends. It's free. FRONT distribution at Ristretto Roasters LoBu 555 NE Couch. 4PM-7 Free

November 21 Awaken Last Summer Sitings

Holocene has always been entwined with Portland visual and performing artists.

Tonight they host a PNCA happy hour with performances and video by PNCA staff members: Weird Fiction, Dizzynest, Fasters, a Power Girls zine reading from Kinoko Evans and video by Jason Williams, Linden How, Jodie Cavalier and Linda Kliewer. Some of these are in the PNCA staff show Last Call at the school. At Holocene 1001 SE Morrison 5PM Free

Fourteen30 Contemporary has All Summer in a Day, a group show by Matt Connors, Kristan Kennedy, Owen Kydd, Diane Simpson and Erika Verzutti. At Portland's only member of the New Art Dealers Alliance, Fourteen30 Gallery 1501 SW Market Street Map 11AM-6PM Weekends, tonight 6PM-8 Free

Nationale opens When We Dead Awaken by PNCA MFA painting grad Elizabeth Malaska. The work expresses the artist's critique of gender sociopolitics in the art world and generalized social apathy using surrealist tactics. At Nationale 3360 SE Division Map 6PM-8 Free

Disjecta opens video works Sightings by Kevin Cooley and Jessica Mallios. Cooley has Skyward, an up shot from a convertible car which is projected on the ceiling above the audience and A Thousand Miles an Hour involving synchronized sun and moon images. Mallios has Rhombus and Tower of the Americas. This is the second show by the new curator involving video, a welcome trend. At Disjecta, in the shadow of Paul Bunyan 8371 N. Interstate Map 6PM-10 Free

November 20 Thanksgiving Before Black Friday

Thanksgiving. It has resisted commercialization with a focus on family.

The first peoples of the Northwest had a similar tradition. Potlatch.

People gathered with their surplus or lack and made gifts to one another over a feast.

The Museum has a nine foot long Kwakwaka'wakw Indian Dzunk'wa Feast Dish, used in potlatches. Artist Blair Saxon-Hill has chosen this piece from all of the collection as the focus of this month's Thursday artist talk and happy hour.

Blair Saxon-Hill speaks at the Art Museum happy hour At the Portland Art Museum 1219 SW Park
6PM $5 members or regular museum admission

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

November 19 MSHR Potatoes

S1 multiplexes between a visual arts venue, a video/media art venue and a music venue. Tonight they cover all three. Hairy Food, Jessie Mejia and MSHR perform. And it's underground. At S1, formerly Multiplex, 4148 NE Hancock Map 9PM $5-7

Friday, November 14, 2014

November 15 Flood Information Space

Portland is a river town. That is why we are here. But water is a powerful force.

Once upon a time, Portland, in a state which has a history unkind to African Americans, had a neighborhood, Vanport. It was in North Portland by now Delta Park. African Americans moved to Portland to work in the Swan Island shipyards for WWII. Inexpensive apartments for many were made in Vanport. But Vanport was known to be in a flood area. On May 30, 1948, the levies were overcome and the homes of many destroyed. Here is a short documentary.

This afternoon some of the first person survivors relate their experiences for the Vanport Multimedia Project. New videos gathering their experiences will be shown. More information is at

Recommended for real Portland history we can learn from in our actions of the moment.

Vanport Multimedia Project at the Vancouver Avenue First Baptist Church, 3138 N. Vancouver 2PM Free

Portland is a paper publishing town. In that spirit, YU presents a talk by James Hoff on his project Primary Information which prints artists works, current and past. At Yu Contemporary Art 900 SE 10th 5PM

This evening is also opening for the remaining Pioneer Place Mall galleries. The Mark Woolley Gallery has Carola Penn and Diane Avo-Augee. At the Mark Woolley Gallery a gallery on the 3rd floor of the Pioneer Place Mall. If the mall appears closed, enter the film theater building adjacent, travel through the tunnel to the Place mall, and take the elevator to the 3rd floor, sometimes the bridge on the 3rd floor is open too. 700 SW Fifth 5PM-9 Free

Art is all around us. It is a niche of everyday experience with its own semiotics. But to see it in person with others seeking coreaction requires space. Space as in rent, heat, staff. So yearly one space, Disjecta, mounts an art auction. It's an opportunity to see a cross section of local art, artists, and those passionate about art. This year's participating artists may be seen on the Disjecta website.

The Disjecta art auction at Disjecta, in the shadow of Paul Bunyan 8371 N. Interstate Map 7PM-10 $25 advance $30 door

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

November 14 Grow Canaries

Recent L&C graduate Tony Chrenka brings his installations to S1 tonight. Inspired by social commentary, sustainable architecture and constructed identity he has built Slow Grow. The S1 art events are always recommended. At S1, formerly Multiplex, 4148 NE Hancock Map 6PM-9 Free

You can learn a lot about an artist-their art from a studio visit. It's a rare thing.

Artists can be the canaries in the coal mines. Sometimes they are inspired by the rivulets of culture before they coalesce into the great flood. So looking into what's going on in art school is a way of hearing some birdsongs of those canaries.

Tonight, PNCA MFA artists Amory Abbott, Sean Barnes, Rachel Brown-Smith, Rebecca Carlisle, Maggie Condit, Maria Davidoff, Liz Fuller, Alex Godbold, Anastasia Greer, Lucas Haley, Tessa Heck, Evan Isoline, Candace Jahn, Aaron Johnson, Marisa Lee, Kelly McGovern, Jung Min, Bertrand Morin, Annie Oldenburg, Nicholas Patton, Katie Piatt, Veronica Reeves, Caitlin Rooney, BriAnna Rosen, Dylan Schietinger, Micah Schmelzer, Tait Simonson, Lauren Stumpf, Jason Berlin Thomas and Nikki Vene open their studio warren to see work in progress, completed works and to chat.

Recommended. At the PNCA visual studies studios 1830 NW 19th 6PM-9 Free

Saturday, November 08, 2014

November 9 Heart of Darkness

Richard Mosse speaks today of his experience filming war in Congo.

We see with our eyes. But there are other "colors" beyond our vision. We call those ultraviolet, for light with shorter waves beyond violet, and infrared for long waves beyond red.

Mosse found an archaic infrared movie film stock made in WWII which was tuned in "color" to separate camouflaged military from plant life. The film prints the infrared reflected by natural plants as pink.

With a team of fixers, Mosse took his camera into Eastern Congo. The area is filled with warlords, remnants of the 1994 Rwanda genocide. Today they continue their dirty little war by mining minerals, like tantalum, an essential ingredient in every electronic device made today. It is smuggled to China where it sells for $400 a pound.

His resulting video work, The Enclave, has just opened at the Portland Art Museum. The work comes from the 2014 Venice Biennale.

Many people are critical of Conrad's Heart of Darkness. But they miss that it is a meditation on the experience of the narrator, and not a judgement on a continent. I've been in North Kivu, in a time of considerably less risk, though we drove by vast refugee camps and heard gunfire nearby.

Nonetheless, the 20 year war in Eastern Congo, with more than 6 million perished, is reprehensible.

The war has also decimated the endangered mountain gorilla, a sustainable source of ecotourism.

Richard Mosse speaks at the Portland Art Museum 1219 SW Park 2PM Members, free; otherwise regular admission - so you can see the show - seniors $12, else $15

November 8 Let's Get Conceptual

Late career British conceptual artist Terry Atkinson, cofounder of Art&Language opens a show recreating an earlier work using grease as the art medium. The YU website has a more detailed explanation. The artist speaks at YU on Sunday at 2PM. At Yu Contemporary Art 900 SE 10th 3PM-4

Friday, November 07, 2014

November 7 Eastside Art Openings+

Laura Hughes opens The Lines Along Which Anything Lies at the PSU Littman Gallery. Hughes is one of Portland's few light artists. The work is based on dichroic interference films which reflect color selectively based on the angle of reflection. There will also be an artist talk in the gallery November 21 at 6:30PM. At the PSU Littman Gallery in Smith Union. Littman Gallery, PSU Smith Hall, Room 250, 1825 SW Broadway 5PM-8 Free

The PSU Autzen Gallery has This is a This, returning MFA Studio Practice graduates. They are: Jea Alford, Chris Freeman, Katie Holden, Manny Layers and Pam Minty. At PSU Autzen Gallery, Neuberger Hall, 2nd Floor, Room 205, 724 SW Harrison 5PM-8 Free

Red Cloud Collective has a show of neon, Let’s Be Light, by Julia Calabrese, Derek Joyns, Adam Zeek, Daniel Long, David Wien and Perry Pfister
1454 NE Prescott 7PM-10

Worksound continues last month's show in their new compact space with a low key opening. At Worksound 820 SE Alder Map 6PM-10

Black Box has Color Space, a group show of color photography. At Black Box Gallery 811 E Burnside, Suite 212 upstairs 5PM-8 Free

Katherine Bradford and Sarah Gamble have dreamy paintings. Themes include electromagnetic fields, floating and flying. At Adams and Ollman Gallery 811 E Burnside #213 6PM-9 Free

Wednesday, November 05, 2014

November 6 Westside Art Openings+

Hellion has Dreams Within Dreams by APEK. We like, and have covered this husband and wife kwai-style illustration duo for some time. Also showing is In The Toy Box with Ikumi Nakada from Japan. Hellion is looking for a new location, ideally inner East side. They will continue in a temporary smaller space on the same floor beginning December until they find one. If you hear of something reasonable, let them know. At Hellion Gallery through the lobby of the arched brick entry, up the stairs and to the back. Very upper floor Japan-style. 19 NW 5th Suite 208. Map 7PM-10 Free

Corey Arnold is a photographer that catches fish for a living. And the reverse is true too. He spends some of the year in Portland, so he is a Portlander. Tonight he opens a new body of work, Wildlife, shot (with a camera) in Alaska. We will have to see how the Pebble Mine proposed upstream from a huge salmon fishery unfolds, or not. At Charles Hartman Fine Art 134 NW 8th

Reed professor Akihiko Miyoshi has Pigment Migrations & Suspended Refraction. They are photographs inspired by science. He is an artist and engineer. At UpFor Gallery 929 NW Flanders 6PM-9 Free

It's always educational and often pleasurable to see a greatest hits - greatest hitter show. This is one of photographic self portraits by Delaney Allen, Chuck Close, Nan Goldin, David Hilliard, Justine Kurland, Isaac Layman, Robert Lyons, Robert Mapplethorpe, Vik Muniz, Alec Soth, Arne Svenson and Carrie Mae Weems. At Elizabeth Leach Gallery 417 NW 9th Map 6PM-9

Portland artist Roger Peet has Traps, Flows, Echoes in the PNCA second floor Gallery 214. It is related to his volunteer work and family history in the Congo. Fascinating. At PNCA 1241 NW Johnson Map 6PM-9 Free

Jared Soares has Small-Town Hip Hop, his documentation of that world in Roanoke Virginia. Adriana Lopez Sanfeliu has Life on the Block, a view of families in Spanish Harlem, New York, New York. At Blue Sky Gallery map 122 NW 8th 6PM-9 Free

Abigail McNamara has a wall piece she has been installing in the gallery all month. Now it is finished! At Duplex Collective 219 NW Couch 6PM-9 Free

Everett Lofts are recommended as always. It's easier for you to see them all than for me to write suggestions. Some close as early as 9PM. At the Everett Lofts 625 NW Everett. Bounded by NW Everett, Broadway, Flanders and 6th Map closing ranges from 9PM-10:30ish

Native(X) is a contemporary visual arts and crafts show by Native Americans. It includes work by Yatika Fields,Toma Villa, Jaque Fragua, Cheyenne Randall and Sho Sho Esquiro. At Union/Pine 525 SE Pine 6PM-10 Free

Tuesday, November 04, 2014

November 5 Eyes and Ears on Synths

An infinite symphony of musicians can be made in a laptop. Digital domain.

The analog electronics maker movement is going another direction.

They have adopted the tactics of musique concrète, a room full of analog oscillators and filters, on through to a rack full of miniatures of the same, which characterized the Moog era. These analog modules have knobs, switches, sequencers and colorful patch cables, sometimes even a chromatic keyboard.

A common format for all these today is the Eurorack. There are dozens of companies all over the world making Eurorack modules, including Portland's MiniGorille.

MiniGorille has a new species of hybrid digital-analog module, the Geometry Synthesizer. It has switches, dials and patchpoints to participate with the other sound modules in the patch. But it also talks by Bluetooth to laptop software, in this case, Grasshopper and Processing, generative visualization tools.

The music from the analog synth controls the generation of the visuals in real time.

I'm sure there are hybrid analog synth-laptop synth hybrids possible with the technology too!

You can see and hear the Geometry Synthesizer tonight. Geometry Synthesizer demonstration at Control Voltage 3742 NE Mississippi 6:30PM Free

Saturday, November 01, 2014

November 1 M.A.S.S. IX

Tonight is an all souls evening of music, visuals and reading. We are not saying its dark. But we are not saying its light. Grouper, Liz Harris, performs her abstract music. White Gourd, Suzanne Stone, performs music-art-movement inspired by the death card in her tarot deck, accompanied by visuals by vVv Stardust, Vivian Hua. Tyler Brewington provides readings.

M.A.S.S. is an ongoing series of events combining visual art, performance, music, readings and projections, in a church. Your own spiritual artistic experience.

M.A.S.S. IX at Alberta Abbey 126 NE Alberta Doors 7PM, show 8 Free, donations accepted