“Do you see the big Costco sign?” asked Gabriel Weiss over the phone, trying to explain the location of his gallery that had eluded me twice. Part martial arts and meditation center, language school, art gallery and acrobatic training studio, the Bamboo Grove Salon is a learning and exhibition space of Weiss’s own design-one that provides a physical representation of Weiss’s frenetic interests.
“James Fredrick Boo Dog Jackson is a Gemini,” reads a painted sign on the left wall of the MK Gallery. Next to the sign, a painting of an expectant brown dog, with its tongue hanging out and a tennis ball nearby, draws the eyes of art students, teachers and passers-by. But the woman asking them if they want pancakes from inside the gallery may be more distracting.
When Janice White and Patti Hyder were approached last year about showing their art in Portland State’s Littman Gallery, they were thrilled. After almost 20 years of honing their craft, the two longtime friends were ready to display their complex work in their first real gallery show. Their art? Quilts. It’s not exactly the usual gallery fare.
“I hated the cold,” said Darryl Gilbert about his hometown in the suburbs of Chicago. “As soon as I could get out of here, I did.” Yet, after having lived in San Francisco for most of his adult life (along with stints in Los Angeles and Ashland), Gilbert has returned to his hometown with a new eye for compressed beauty and distinct scenes.
The Autzen Gallery is housing a strange noise this month, a rasping breath somewhere in between the lull of machines and the drum of indistinguishable voices. It seems reasonable enough that the noise could be the different parts of the installation talking to one another.
The Portland Art Museum is generally seen as a large, yet small-town museum with an excellent local collection. But the museum has also hosted a series of traveling sideshows, which lend to its “internationally recognized” status.
Portland may be known for its beer theaters, but what about beer operas? With a movie, too? Carmen, at the Someday Lounge, is a little bit of everything: part musical review, part opera, part silent movie screening and part old-fashioned Cabaret Voltaire-style performance art, with a little bit of Portland’s trademark overeducated and unemployed attitude thrown in for good measure.
“This is our future, huh?” “This is it. A one-room flat, downtown someplace and a social security check coming in.” These, along with other touching comments such as, “It reminds me of my dead mother,” were among the reactions heard in the lobby of the Portland Building in response to Becca Bernstein’s new art installation that opened there last Wednesday.
Spend some cash in Lincoln Hall this week, and you’ll see muscular dancers pushing and throwing each other in a seemingly endless web of violence, recovery and restraint. The performers grit their teeth in tension as they struggle through the barriers of their own and each others’ bodies. In the process, they lash out at the open space with power and strength, sweating through their street clothes and trying to relive every forgotten embarrassment, rage and thrill.
Walk into the back of Blue Sky Gallery, in the handsome DeSoto Building in the North Park Blocks, and you will find yourself facing three scenes of extended time. And trees.
So far, PiP Gallery has had a quick path to success.