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Get on it
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Monday 04.20.15


Monday Links

Jerry Saltz on the New Whitney is today's must read, though it is kind of a rehash that uses the new building and program as a testcase. I agree, many museums have lost their way and the art (along with the serious curators that serve it) have been getting the short end of the stick for about 15 years now. The Whitney here seems to be finding a clarity of purpose through this building rather than the muddle that most recent building campaigns have produced. Going pure timeline and ism-dogma is a kind of intellectual death and the Whitney is right to avoid it. Question is if programmatically/curatorially it can utilize this new breathing space? (My forthcoming Guenther piece goes in depth into how curatorial programs have changed... yes it is still coming, likely closer to PORT's 10th anniversary on June 1 since it is kind of a retrospective on PORT as well). Basically, we live in an age that requires more incisive critical thinking precisely when it is in somewhat shorter supply than any time I can remember. Still, I like the way Saltz has focused on Weinberg here. He's a major reason this museum expansion seems less craven... somehow the Whitney now seems to be curious about itself and what it and NYC has been missing lately.

Surprising discoveries as the Glasgow's incinerated Macintosh masterpiece begins to emerge from the ashes.

I've waited to chime in on Robert Storr's pronouncements on today's art critics because I Love both Storr and Saltz... both are true critics and just like having wolves and bears in a confined space conflict is pretty much preordained. First, we are in a moment of authority bashing (any misstep and someone will call for heads) and both Saltz and Storr both being ubiquitous authorities have an impressive cache of detractors. Familiarity breeds contempt and an art market/system that would rather farm careers rather than... (more)

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Posted by Jeff Jahn on April 20, 2015 at 14:25 | Comments (0)

The Space Between


I generally don't plug shows by artists that are still in school unless it is a thesis show but this 2 day pop up exhibition titled The Space Between looks promising. It explores one of my favorite themes of symmetry/asymmetry and teaser images look like it is installed in intriguing ways. It is related to an old zen principle of breaking symmetry in order to to bring life to the space (the Japanese Garden is full of it and the implications in mathematics are vast).

Curated by two OCAC MFA's Sarah Eaton and Shiloh Gastello it features; Christiana Hedlund, Caylee Hoover, Colin Kippen, Sarah Miller, Jennifer Sindon and Emma Weber.

The Space Between | April 17 and 18
Opening Reception: Friday, April 17th, 6 - 9PM
Ash Street Project Studio, 524 SE Ash Street

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Posted by Jeff Jahn on April 17, 2015 at 13:47 | Comments (0)

Julie Alpert's Splat! at Archer Gallery

Julie Alpert

Julie Alpert is a Seattle based painter and installation artist and along with hercurrent exhibition Splat! at the Archer gallery, she is the artist in residence at Clark College. I like how the Archer has become an embassy in the Portland area for Seattle artists over the years. It would be good for everyone if there was a similarly reciprocal venue outside but still near Seattle. Then there is the difficulty of showing artists from Vancouver Canada in the States despite being so close by. Ah borders, the arts are naturally inclined to cross them, governments... not so much. Seattle and Portland's art scenes can actually learn a great deal from each other, both from their differences and similarities. Show up and compare notes at Splat!

Splat! | April 6 - May 7, 2015
Reception: April 15, 5-7PM
Artist Talk: April 15: 4:00PM Archer Gallery
1943 Fort Vancouver Way, Penguin Union Building
Vancouver Washington
Gallery Hours: Tues.-Thurs. 10AM - 7PM, Fri. and Sat. 12-5PM
Phone: 360 992 2246

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Posted by Jeff Jahn on April 13, 2015 at 20:26 | Comments (0)

Richard Mosse: Exit Interview

Installation view of Richard Mosse's The Enclave at the Portland Art Museum (photo Jeff Jahn)

Richard Mosse's The Enclave at the Portland art Museum explores the uinimaginable experiences of disruption, diaspora and genocide in the constantly conflicted region of Eastern Congo. We sat down with him for an exit interview. Earlier we published a review, which captures many of the reasons it is among the most memorable exhibitions PAM has presented in the 16 years Ive lived here.

Jeff Jahn: Let's start with your background?

Richard Mosse: Both of my parents are artists who do country pottery. I guess craftspeople. So they were very concerned that I would also be a starving artist. I was forbidden.

... (more)

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Posted by Jeff Jahn on April 12, 2015 at 12:25 | Comments (0)

Weekend Picks


Hakkodo, The Artisans of Kamakura, is the finale in a trio of of exhibitions tracing traditions in Japanese lacquer and brings 4 generations of artists (all from one town) who have for 29 generations handed down the tradition from father to son. Now a woman, Keiko Goto, is building a new tradition along with her sister Naoko, building upon the past but moving in a new direction. PORT reviewed the exquisite second in the series by Kazumi Murose, and the first Rediscovering Lacquer was our top pick of 2014's craft/design exhibitions. Definitely check it out, besides the Japanese Garden itself is sublime and a top shelf experience.

Hakkodo, The Artisans of Kamakura | April 10 - May 3
Portland Japanese Garden
611 SW Kingston Avenue

...more (Heidi Schwegler + Richard Mosse)

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Posted by Jeff Jahn on April 10, 2015 at 14:49 | Comments (0)

Amy Whitaker Lecture


There is a great deal going on midweek in Portland visual arts wise but Amy Whitaker's lecture looks promising. Whitaker is the author of Museum Legs a collection of essays on the life of museums and public art and explores the intersection of art, business, and everyday life. . She is also the president of the Professional Organization for Women in the Arts (POWarts) and a mentor for fellows of the TED Conferences as well as full-time faculty at the Sothebys Institute of Art in New York. Amy holds an MBA from Yale and an MFA in oil painting from the Slade School of Fine Art in London. Her undergraduate degree is in political science and studio art from Williams College.

Amy Whitaker | MFA AC+D Visiting Artist Lecture
Lecture: April 8, 6:30- 8:30PM
421 NE 10th Avenue

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Posted by Jeff Jahn on April 07, 2015 at 11:01 | Comments (0)

Monday Links

Brian Libby asks, can Portland contain its rising housing costs and "Grow the right way?" Generally the art scene is right on the front lines of this question as galleries and artist's apartments and studios are the canaries in the coal mine. For Portland it will basically take more property owners like David Gold, Al Solheim and Brian Wannemaker who understand that vitality in the arts can pay off in the long term in ways that aren't in the typical property asset management playbook.

Rogue sculpture seems far more edgy than Banksy with this unauthorized Edward Snowden Bust in NYC.

Edward Winkleman on the new art world buzz around transparency in markets.

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Posted by Jeff Jahn on April 06, 2015 at 11:10 | Comments (0)

First Thursday Picks April 2015

Well spring is in the air, bringing a sense of newness and renewal. Here is what should be fresh tonight:


There's nothing fresher than new BFA's (hopefully that's true). Enter PNCA's 503/971 exhibition, organized by two students, Joseph McGehee and Joseph Greer the exhibition will survey current art students from PNCA, PSU, Reed, OCAC, and Lewis & Clark. Curated by Kristan Kennedy (Portland Institute for Contemporary Art), Robert Snowden (Yale Union), Libby Werbel (Portland Museum of Modern Art) this will be the first real shakedown of the new commons space so Im extra curious how it plays out as a gallery space.

503/971 | April 1 - April 29
Opening Reception: April 2 6-9PM
511 Commons
511 NW Broadway


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Posted by Jeff Jahn on April 02, 2015 at 15:29 | Comments (0)

April 1st links and musings

Photo Jeff Jahn

Richard Speer pens the last of his articles for the WWeek with a reflection on the art scene and a list of his favorite shows. First of all it wasn't "better" it was far smaller and less academic with an odd sense that we were discovering our potential as a city (one which it had been deep denial of). Let's just say Richard has never been a lover of the academic position. Also, back then the same 50-100 people could be seen at every... (more)

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Posted by Jeff Jahn on April 01, 2015 at 12:11 | Comments (0)

Burkheimer & Antoni

Burkheimer is at Linfield

Karl Burkheimer's ambiguous architecture for "Not It" will be the final show curator Cris Moss curates for the Linfield Gallery... one of the very best spaces in the region so let's hope his replacement is up to the task (the U of O likely snagged Moss as a way to compete more effectively with PNCA, which now has a vastly enhanced profile with the 511 building). Burkheimer is at his strongest when he's more of an architectural gadfly and less sculptural, yet still not architecture( he has strayed into both areas lately so I sense this is a return to form/unform) and Linfield's soaring gallery is one of the few in the region which presents a lot of room for such fugitive interlocutionary spatial experiences. The fact that this trickster is opening this on April 1st is another good sign to go see "Not It"... both Burkheimer and Moss enjoy a smart prank and sometimes that strategy works wonders.

Not It | April 1 - May 6
Reception and Talk: Wednesday, April 1, at 5:30PM (artist talk) Delkin Recital Hall, 6:30PM reception in gallery
Linfield Gallery | Linfield College 900 SE Baker st., McMinnville, OR

Janine Antoni Ingrown, 1998

7 years ago Reed used to have the best college art programming/shows in the region... That isn't true anymore but their Ostrow lecture series remains one of the best bets. What's more, it has been over a decade since PICA was the last to bring Janine Antoni to speak to Portlanders. Antoni's work presents the body and its functions as a kind of aesthetic intelligence made manifest in the tradition of greats like Ana Mendieta, Chris Burden, Richard Long and the once great Marina Abromovic. There is a current crop of younger practitioners like Tino Seghal and Rossana Martinez (whose work I brought to PNCA in 2010) to name a few. Considering the popularity of such physical intelligence work it will be interesting what she has to say about not jumping the shark.

Janine Antoni | Ostrow Lecture Series
Artist talk: March 31 7:00PM
Reed College | Kaul Auditorium

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Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 30, 2015 at 12:09 | Comments (0)

Get on it

"Intent to apply" for RACC's career opportunity grants is April 1 (and not because they have a sense of humor). Basically, these grants are one of the best ways to help you make the most of exhibitions and opportunities outside of the area and to cover myriad opportunities locally that are not directly applied to producing a work here (those would be project grants). Deadline 4|1|15

Submit your subversive design ideas to the Jonald Dudd exhibition in NYC's LES with emphasis on objects that blur boundaries between art, design and craft (Fee is $50 if you get in but there is a Portland connection). Deadline 4|15|15

Last but not least, the Prequel juried exhibition opportunities designed for recent graduates (made possible via the innovative Precipice Fund) are worth a look. Deadline 4|6|15

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Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 26, 2015 at 19:10 | Comments (0)

Monday Links

Zumthor's latest LACMA design crystalizes into something more than a blob. I think Los Angelenos were mostly reacting to an outsider simply reiterating the stereotypes about LA being shapeless and image conscious above all else. Though true it goes over about as well as an outsider producing a building or art about Portland being rainy and quirky. Sure, but can't we dig deeper? I Love Zumthor so I have faith he will continue to refine this into something special. MoMA in NYC looks like the Mall of America in so many ways comparatively.

Richard Diebenkorn's 10 guidelines for himself in and about the studio. I like #10 best (strong artists interrogate themselves and test their assumptions). Also, I would be remiss if I didn't mention that Diebenkorn was born here in Portland Oregon. Unlike Rothko, he spent virtually no time here and had not other significant history with our fair city.

Because it is a season of bashing authority... it is now Klaus Biesenbach's turn at MOMA for the Bjork retrospective. One bad show, review etc. can't be grounds for dismissing people but it does hint that NYC is rightly concerned about losing its cultural edge and long-view relevancy/seriousness... especially at a time of tension between the haves and have nots is at a boil. There is a sense that many museums, MOMA in particular have jumped the shark by seeking short term popularity at the cost of other more crucial things (this is being played out in the rancor over MoMA's expansion designs).

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Posted by Jeff Jahn on March 23, 2015 at 22:08 | Comments (0)

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