By Joseph Gallivan
DIANA PALERMO: SUBLIMATION
Fuller Rosen Gallery, Portland. To May 17
This solo show by Diana Palermo is grounded in the way people repress their dark-side instincts to appear civilized. Growing up queer in a Catholic household, Palermo has plenty of material to tease out the subject, whose technical name is sublimation, not repression. The artist’s photo collages of ambiguous body parts, often arranged in angular spirals or mechanical patterns, flood the amygdala and torque the optic nerve, but the overall e ect is one of trance-like release.
BLACKFISH ARTISTS: 40TH YEAR CELEBRATION
Blackfish Gallery, Portland. Apr 2 – 27
The venerable Portland artist cooperative gallery is rolling back the years with a group show of dozens of past and current members. Blackfi sh was a force for passionate independent artists in Portland’s Pearl District when it was train tracks and warehouses. In April they will also celebrate the Wong family, their landlords who give them a good deal on rent. Keep an ear out for the specially commissioned folk-blues oratorio, with a libretto based on 40 years of gallery logbook entries. Performed free to the public on April 13 (7 pm) and April 14 (3 pm).
WILLIAM PARK, RUTH ROSS AND POCA KIM: BEAUTY
Gallery 114, Portland. Apr 4 – 27
Three artists focus on a slippery concept in art: beauty, the “invisible dragon” of art critic Dave Hickey’s essay with the same title. Mixed-media artist Ruth Ross prints on aprons a symbol of domestic godlessness. Painter William Park zooms in on everyday objects. Poca Kim hauls gender identity over the coals with her paintings of androgynous figures. Note the panel discussion, Beauty in Contemporary Art, on April 13.
NOAH ADDIS: FUTURE CITIES
Blue Sky Gallery, Portland. Apr 4 – 28
April is Portland Photo Month, with multiple galleries going lens-shaped for the occasion. There’s also the Photolucida Portfolio Reviews event April 25-28. Don’t miss Noah Addis’ exploration of the slums of the world: the desperate conditions of people crammed together in makeshift homes of tin, wood, cloth and plastic, and the giant vistas they occupy. He also focuses on strange new developments, odd boxes in the desert and cubes in the hills. But it’s the shantytowns that are astonishing.
DEB STONER: GARDEN STUDIES
Imogen Gallery, Astoria. Apr 13 – Jun 4
A photographer who is also a researcher and gardener, Deb Stoner uses texture and highlight in a way that recalls the masters of Dutch still life painting. Usually we see flowers growing in earth or cut and arranged in bouquets, so seeing them casually laid out like samples is refreshing. She also works as a jeweler, which shows in her attention to layout and the intersection of stems and petals.