Richard Swift’s art has a place in an American lineage of primal, urgent outsider art that can be traced from Walt Whitman to Kerouac, from Bo Diddley to Captain Beefheart, from Bill Traylor to Royal Robertson. It is the kind of art that can only come to pass when the rest of the world is deep into REM and old death comes creeping in at a man from the shadows. (more…)
Please join us January 17 at the Downtown Cafe as we collaborate with Nationale to host a reading by three rising stars of the Portland writing community. Joseph Mains, Zachary Schomburg and Drew Scott Swenhaugen will all read from recent works.
One of the most moving experiences we can have as human beings is that of mystery.
We fall in love and suddenly our insides become outer space. We are in Portland and dreaming of Austin or we are in Virginia and dreaming of Tennessee. It’s the profound experience of the “other”. There’s a statement I have often overheard in galleries and museums that tie up this experience in a perfect colloquial bow: I don’t get it but I love it, or any hundreds of derivations: I don’t get it but it feels good, I don’t get it but…wow!
This reaction is a human reaction and often experienced, or vocalized, in our relationship with music, dance, film, and visual art. So it seems strange to me that we do not allow ourselves this same sort of ecstatic experience with the reading of poetry. With poetry the above declarations too often end with I don’t get it. There seems to be an expectation that poetry should be, if at first a kind of puzzle, something that is, in the end, figured out; an art form that is best experienced via autopsy. The body of the poem is placed in front of us and we are to cut it open and “figure” it out— when was it born? What was its meaning in life? How did it die?
I would like to argue for the embrace of a more mysterious, inexplicable, and unsolved experience of poetry. Let’s be in love!
January 17 at 7pm
Stumptown Downtown, 128 SW 3rd Ave, Portland, OR
Embroidered and cut fabric works
In these pieces of freehand embroidery on tulle and linen, Emily explores images from her dreams. The fabric forms assume shapes of pillows, wrappings, and coverings, but with their sheer quality, expose what is underneath. The layers of stitching overlap, and in the right light cast shadows on the wall and on itself.
In these pieces she also experiments with cutting out shapes and forms, faces, and hands. Cutting them out of the bigger picture and displacing them. Sometimes dreams feel that way, you are in one place and it is beautiful, and then immediately you are somewhere else, with no explanation.
Opening Reception 4-6pm Sunday, January 20th.
4525 SE Division Street
Portland, OR 97206
In this collection of portraits Caleb Walter Reed has been inspired by his partner’s Christian faith. The work is a dialogue between his less spiritual experience of the world and his partner’s connection to religious tradition. Most of the models for these portraits have been reinvented as saints, particularly beheaded martyrs, and therefore become less about the actual portrait and more about these individuals as just heads.
Opening Reception is 4-6pm Sunday, January 13th with music by The Strangled Darlings.
3356 SE Belmont St.
Portland, OR 97214
“I started this work two years ago when I first moved to Portland. For the first year I mostly painted patterns and mandalas with india ink. I started using a compass to make my circles more balanced and would often grid my compositions with a ruler. Last summer I started trying to incorporate gauche and watercolor. I have been using lacquer-based inks for my outline and detail areas. Lately with the newest stuff I have been combining the patterns with figures. I like the effect and am really enjoying the process. I hope you enjoy it too.” – Zachary Marvick
How to Make Millions While You Sleep runs through the end of the month at the Belmont cafe.