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 Back  Vignettes | Oregon | September – October 2015

By Allyn Cantor

RAE MAHAFFEY: SO-AND-SO Laura Russo Gallery, Portland, Sep 3-26 Rae Mahaffey investigates the possibilities of colour, pattern and repetition in vibrant and stimulating oil paintings created on woodgrain panels. The artist is most concerned with formal considerations, which she calls the “semantics and syntax of visual art.” Her fresh contemporary works utilize systematic compositions and layers of organic and geometric motifs rendered through a saturated palette. Drama and luminosity result from the push and pull between structured forms and chromic textures that echo the woodgrain of her panels.

HEATHER WATKINS: THIS IS THE ONLY ONE PDX Contemporary Art, Portland, Sep 1-26 Portland artist Heather Watkins uses experimental forms of drawing, printmaking, book arts, installation and sculpture in her studio practice. Her new exhibit includes interrelated bodies of work that are primarily concerned with their own making over any singular images. One series begins with the same gesture for each work, created with vibrant blue ink on linen; the totality is a meditation on variation and movement. In other pieces, Watkins’s ink drawings are records of touch and transmission, describing objects that are no longer there.

EYEBEAM IN OBJECTS Upfor, Portland, Sep 3-Oct 10 Eyebeam is a New York-based nonprofit that promotes and supports the creative use of new technologies and provides exposure for engaging new media projects. For this exhibition, director and curator Roddy Schrock asked alumni of Eyebeam’s residency program, who work in a myriad of tech-related forms, to render their work into objects. The exhibit features Chloë Bass, Zach Blas, James Bridle, Heather Dewey-Hagborg, Zach Gage, Brian House and Addie Wagenknecht, some of Eyebeam’s most forward-looking and adventurous artists.

STILLEVEN: CONTEMPORARY STILL LIFE Hallie Ford Museum of Art, Salem, Sep 12-Dec 20 This exhibit brings together 27 artists from Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Montana and British Columbia who work in both traditional and challenging notions of still life. Stilleven: Contemporary Still Life highlights works that range from explorations of atmosphere and light to wildly fanciful and improbable compositions to those that express social, political or environmental considerations. Noteworthy artists include Henk Pander, Norman Lundin, Sherrie Wolf, Katherine Ace and Whiting Tennis.

SEEING NATURE: LANDSCAPE MASTERWORKS FROM THE PAUL G. ALLEN FAMILY COLLECTION Portland Art Museum, Portland, Oct 10-Jan 10 This major exhibition presents five centuries of masterworks that trace the evolution of European and American landscape painting. Never before exhibited together, exquisite pieces by William Turner and Paul Cézanne provide glimpses into some of the genre’s innovators, while paintings by Thomas Moran, Edward Hopper and Georgia O’Keeffe provide an American perspective. A rare Gustav Klimt landscape and five canvases by French Impressionist Claude Monet are highlights of this exhibit, which will travel after its première at PAM.

Rae Mahaffey
Rae Mahaffey

Heather Watkins
Heather Watkins

Addie Wagenknacht
Addie Wagenknacht

Katherine Ace
Katherine Ace

Edouard Manet
Edouard Manet

 Mon, Sep 7, 2015