Muscle Car Memory/Carcinoma, 2010 by Sean Healy
installation view, image via
It's a couple of weeks old but Jeff Jahn at PORT published a recap of Portland's art scene, as seen through the eyes of its curators. It includes favorite shows, criticisms, complaints, advice and observations. I'm always surprised by the lack of exchange between Portland and Seattle, so it's nice to read about our friends down south. Here are some of their responses to the question, "What is your best advice for an artist?"
Meet people, volunteer for anything, and be professional and polite. Just that will get you pretty far. Oh and mostly, just keep working on your art. - Blake Shell: Archer Gallery, Clark College
Get into your studio! and get others (artists you look up to - but may not know, mentors, curators, teachers, family members, friends etc) to visit you while you are there working your butt off. - Kelly Rauer: New American Art Union
Your friends often define, limit and inspire you.... figure out who is helping and who isn't serious enough. Cut out the dead wood, determine what you really want and let everything else fade to the background. Some Portland artists just want a Pabst and an opportunity to be vaguely sarcastic while walking slowly, those people are worthless. Others simply like others who like them, which is a numbing strategy. Concentrate on making each show a quantum level better each time out and make each exhibition count (those uninterested in these ideas are probably dead wood). - Jeff Jahn, Curator/Critic