Brigitte Dortmund, “New Paintings”
Mark Woolley, 920 N.W. Ninth Ave.
I could simply write expressionist drivel and get this quick review over with, but that would be too easy. You see, Dortmund’s work is a thick palette of dark overworked oil that manifests a vision of nature and the emotions it manifests. Her work is hyper-personal, steeped in the idioms of the past and perfect for a manufactured home in Lake Oswego. It is without character, personality or arc, it is perfect for Woolley’s Pearl clientele and frankly perfect for the Pearl District itself, which makes it, I suppose, high-priced expressionist drivel. And hell, I like Cy Twombly.
Small A Projects, 1430 S.E. Third Ave.
Allyson Vieira is one of those artists whose work is steeped deep in the mythology created by early Western civilizations. Her dissected geometric drawings and instillations, and her simple palette of reds, blues and whites investigate the simple base of ancient glory. The individual pieces manifest minimalism of Marfa magnitudes, but as a whole the tools used and described in her shattered columns and monochromatic blocks are an insight into the basic ideas from which all our pragmatic glory was born. Whoa.
“A Symphony of Prosthetic Possibilities”
Missing Link Toys, 3314 S.E. Belmont Ave.
It’s debatable who’s at fault. Transformers perhaps? Graf legends like Futura 2000? All those random Japanese toys you discovered in the discount bins as children? Whoever is to blame, it’s time to face it. You are obsessed with toys. The vinyl hipster toy market has exploded in the past decade, inundating us with overpriced collectors edition art objects in the form of overdeveloped action men. And I fucking love it. This month Missing Link features customized vinyl accompanied by traditional flat work that explores the array of hipster-designed play. With local and international artists contributing this collection of tripped and tricked-out toys, all that latchkey-kid paint huffing seems almost worthwhile.