“The curation of local artists for this exhibition was really fun! The array of styles, processes and design separate each artist from one another in so many ways, but all in the name of art.
The majority of these artists you can see street side or within a gallery setting across Portland and beyond.
This exhibition has a wide selection of artwork styles which will consist of but not be limited to illustration, abstract, stencil, print making, screen printing, mixed media etc… all focusing on each artists specialty craft and medium of choice.” -Mad One, Curator
Please join us for a night of poetry, art, food and drink as Ellen Petruzzella and Lindsay Martin show their work in the exhibition: The Habitual and The Novel: Magic, at the Ford Gallery on Saturday, January 26 from 6 pm to 9 pm. Poetry Reading begins at 7 p.m. Please find more details below.
Opening Reception Saturday January 26th, 6 – 9 PM Poetry Reading at 7 PM
Gather. Retain. Modulate. Materialize. Share. The Habitual and The Novel: Magic showcases Ellen Petruzzella and Lindsay Martin’s thesis bodies of work created at Oregon College of Art and Craft. Both revel in sensory experience, image, and poetic memoir. Their practices focus on transforming the everyday into the extraordinary with material and perception. This work exists in partnership with the fated and coincidental alignment of material and time, of body and spirit.
Ellen Petruzzella focuses on building relationships and understanding through material and sensory encounters. Lindsay Martin uses painting to create a poem via imagery, searching for a new visual language from place and experience. She grapples with place, pulling it apart and putting back together to form new potentials, the casual and the wonderful, in the present. Inspired by Virginia Woolf’s To The Lighthouse, this show seeks to share stories via poetry, object and image to create something new and thus, creating something magical.
Ellen Petruzzella My interdisciplinary work explores intimacy and knowledge, provoking curiosity regarding the unity of mind, body, and environment. I explore exchanges of understanding and trust through perception, corporal comprehension, and intuition. Investigations of the senses and habitual patterns allow for a vivid experience of the present and a connection of people and place through discovery and attention. I design sensory experiences, which promote slowness, require physical presence, explore preferences and aversions, and question what is biological instinct and what is cultural construct. Through conscious experience of physical self, we access the unconscious space between the known and the felt.
Lindsay Martin I want to map out the world through painting by turning. The turn is not transformation, yet. By turning, one is slowly changing a situation, viewing a slightly altered perspective. A transformation happens after many turns; when I arrive at a location, my place transforms from home to beach. My work focuses on the wonderful subtle movement, the leap before home to car, car to gas station, gas station to highway, exit 5, rest stop, diner, beach. Place is both general and detailed, it is permanent and temporary; place is a fluid illusion. Painting emerges as material algomation of the body’s translations of memory. I am curious about comparing the psychological perspective of interior, exterior imagery and the symbolism of architecture. These challenges are met with the language of painting and ideas of expansion in painting through material. Paintings are poetic anecdotes, an escape window, a doorway to the past, a barrier between interior and exterior.
Ford Gallery celebrates our beloved Ford Building artists and makers this December!
Join us Saturday, Dec 8th for an opening celebration and mixer,
featuring the artists and makers who call Ford Building their home!
Opening Reception & Mixer!
Saturday December 8th
Be a Subject in a Neuroscience Study at the Opening Reception
This one-of-a-kind installation reveals paintings designed both as a coherent body of artwork and as scientific stimuli. When you enter, you become part of an experiment.
Saturday, October 27, 2018
INTO A STUDY is both an art installation and a carefully planned neuroscience study. It began in early 2017 when painter Paul Rutz called neuroscientist Amanda Hampton Wray with a question about how to study the ways people view new paintings. After more than a year spent debating, compromising, fundraising and building a stellar team, that question has blossomed into an immersive exhibit using state-of-the-art research technology to transform the gallery experience.
At the opening—one night only—visitors to Ford Gallery will become subjects in a special data collection event. Many will be fitted with biometric equipment, and all will be shown a series of precisely crafted paintings designed both as a coherent body of art and as stimuli for a neuroscience study.
This is not art inspired by science or vice versa. The exhibit practices both art and science together, which is no small feat! Merging the two cultures has been a difficult yet rewarding process, a dialogue full of give and take—and learning—on both sides. This is a growing niche for art, not only as a site for the artist’s self expression, but, importantly, as a guide for how to engage with the world differently.
Immediately after participating in the study, viewers can enjoy a Q and A with the collaborators and see behind-the-scenes video of how it all came together. Next year the exhibit will be tweaked before it travels to Purdue University and beyond.
A Note on the Subject Matter by Paul X. Rutz
Our symbols for “female” and “male” come from the ancient Romans, but they don’t reference the level-headed Minerva and Apollo, the gods of wisdom, art and self control. Instead they refer to Venus and Mars, the gods of sex and war. The “female” symbol depicts the handheld mirror of Venus, while the “male” circle with arrow represents the shield and spear of the war god.
Looking at those symbols on bathroom doors got me curious about our culture’s parallels to Rome beyond the political and military similarities. A quick online search shows that ancient Rome celebrated some surprisingly complicated and flexible images of femininity and masculinity, much like we do today. It turns out that Venus, the goddess of erotic desire, and Mars, the rampaging, pillaging war god, were just two of many forms of these gods. Romans kept making up new versions of them over the centuries, establishing new names, rituals and temples. Soldiers of the Roman Empire sacrificed to Mars Gradivus—the marching god, god of good combat—but when Rome was not yet so big and powerful many people worshipped the agricultural god Mars Silvanus. He gave farmers good harvests and made them into good fathers. As guarantor of treaties, Mars Quirinus precariously held on to peace. Venus Obsequens—Indulgent Venus—was the ancient Romans’ image of the perfect wife, while Venus Genetrix, the pure feminine parent, brought out the best qualities of motherhood in her people. (Julius Caesar’s clan, the Julii, claimed this version of the goddess as their ancestor.) Some ancient writers say the city also worshipped Venus Calva—Bald Venus—for motivating Roman women to sacrifice their hair for the common good, such as during a siege of the city when women cut off their hair and wove the strands into bowstrings to fight off the invaders.
The ancient Romans believed the gods drove people’s behavior. Personified in statues, paintings, prayer and ritual, Venus Obsequens was healthy erotic desire. When you felt it, you knew she had found her way inside you. The paintings in this exhibit show these versions of Venus and Mars as I found them living in us today.
Paul X. Rutz paints pictures in oil on canvas and carved panel. A former Naval Officer and ballet dancer, he holds a Ph.D. in visual culture. His exhibitions include solo shows at the Oregon Military Museum and several academic galleries, as well as group shows at Mark Woolley Gallery and the Smithsonian Institution. A former reporter for the Pentagon’s press service, he has contributed to HuffPost, Modern Fiction Studies, The Smart Set, and Cincinnati Review, among others, and he writes features for Military History and Vietnam magazines.
Amanda Hampton Wray, Ph.D., CCC-SLP, is an Assistant Professor of Communicative Sciences & Disorders and director of the Brain Systems for Language Lab at Michigan State University. Her research program examines relationships between cognitive and linguistic proficiencies and life experiences. Her work employs measures of brain functions mediating language and attention processes in order to understand the development of these skills in populations with typical and disordered developmental trajectories, including children who stutter and those with SLI.
Ford Gallery, Portland, OR
Jason Babcock of Positive Science, LLC
Laura Annalora and Queens’ Suite
Brian J. Clark Productions
Dar Meshi, Ph.D., and Courtney Venker, Ph.D., of Michigan State University
Megan Heiy, Esq.
A series of large scale paintings created in relation to healing from post trauma dissociation.
Saturday, September 29th
6 – 9 PM
Journal entry…on painting 2015
Songs to myself…another chapter of work. All paintings in progress. All writing in progress. The end is nowhere in sight. The fundamental organ. Can’t separate the organ from the bone. There is no story. Color, line movement are all without thought..I find you in everything. I write to myself and I am writing to you. Now I feel hunger. I am your second half, third , and fourth. There is no whole.” six rivers the ocean…”my only hope is that if I keep creating looser, bigger, more, that the understanding will reveal itself without interpretation. My painting will become more real, more full for its lack of interpretation.
Songs for my child. Songs for myself is a body of work created during the last 15 years as a study of self. When I started these paintings and stretched the first large canvases I wasn’t cognizant of what there was to uncover. It’s been an unexpected journey. I knew I was lost and I understood wanting to use my painting practice to build a deeper relationship with self. But what I didn’t realize was how seperated I was from my actual body. Repeated rape, torture, and abuse experiences as a small child had really left me divorced from myself physically and emotionally.
My painting practice required hours of daily meditation in order to find the willingness to show up. Nausea and migraines became daily studio routines. I’ve laid on the floor and tried to surrender to the feelings of grief, pain and betrayal at least hundreds maybe a thousand times.
And I’m still not finished. I’ve done much of this on my own, and I’ve had help along the way. Talented therapists, acupuncturists, and body workers have patiently tried to help me untie these knots. Loving friends and family have reached out and supported me when possible.
I share this work and my process, because it’s important.
Everyday I struggle. Each of us does in their own way. I’m grateful for the time, space, and courage to find myself. And if sharing my process helps even just one other person in the way that it has helped me, then the pain of sharing this experience was worth it. Being alive is beautiful. Part of being a painter is knowing when to stop. There is always more to say, and there’s other paintings to be made.There is blank canvas there to hold my space. I think of these paintings as my pretty monsters. They aren’t about being raped. They’re essentially about who I’m becoming and what I experienced after, and some days in the best of moments, I hope my painting describes the peace of one single lovely instance of being alive.
Journal entry…on being a girl child 2018
Here the air is warm and thick. I walk around and feel like a fissure. A not there. I know at any moment someone could grab and press in to me. And the groups of people are always pressing.
-side note. To feel like a little girl is to be a walking vagina. To be pressed into. Grabbed at any moment and taken. But maybe that would be ok if I could be warm and loved. Not locked in this cold cellar feeling less than. Crumby, not clean, in dirty clothes and worn out shoes, and at least today I have my clothes. Even my bones are cracked because of this stupidness. The shame of knowing that I’m less than. Especially in my vagina…which is no longer the same…and despite my constitutional quiet. Everyone will know and see that something was very wrong. Not with what happened to me. But with who I truly am.
Jolyn Fry was born in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. She graduated with honors from Pennsylvania School of Art and Design in 1996. Since moving to Portland, Oregon, the following year, she has exhibited her continually evolving body of work in many group and solo shows. Whether depicting literal, physical landscapes or abstractions of a more personal, emotional nature, Jolyn says, ‘Surrendering to my artistic process grants me the kindest perspective of myself and the life that moves around me.’ Jolyn is a mother, maker, teacher who works as an Art Educator at Radius Community Art Studio in SE Portland.
On the day I was raped I was not alone. I became one with my sisters, my ancestors. I became nothing and whole at the same time. I became hate. In losing myself I became something I never was before. In losing myself in surrendering I became hate, I became animal, I became sex and rage in my very vulnerability I became humane. I was a child human. Human. Small and insignificant. And it wasn’t until today that I knew as I paint these paintings these pieces of myself, of women, these stories they become me and they become above and below and around me. It was yesterday that I was so sm…small so insignificant. as I am today, but I am all of these things at once small and big. Pain and joy. And I live. I will live. Everything up until this moment has been past. An unfathomable past and I live as life is meant to be for today for a moment with utter knowingness, and a trust that I have never understood before and today becomes a day just like any other day in any other lifetime and that is what makes me rise and fall. That is why I breathe and laugh and cry because of the insignificance of it all.
Featuring works by
Nanette Wallace, Karen Wippich, Benz & Chang
Saturday August 25th
6 – 9 PM
Exquisite corpse is a collaborative drawing approach first used by surrealist artists to create bizarre and intuitive drawings. Each collaborator adds to a composition only being allowed to see the end points of what the previous artist contributed.
All 3 artists, Nanette, Karen and Benz, are inspired by vintage figurative photography. While their imagery choices can be very similar, their approach is quite varied. It’s as if they could be playing a game of exquisite corpse where one can see the connecting narrative in different stories.
Join us for a special closing night event at Ford Gallery!
Artists Nanette Wallace, Karen Wippich and Benz & Chang will be there to share their unique insights and answer questions about their processes and how they came to collaborate on this month’s intriguing show!
Wednesday, September 26 at 7 PM – 9 PM
Nanette’s work is gestural and energetic with a tendency toward emotive motion. A large component for the inspiration in her work is derived from vintage photographs from the early 1900s through the 1960s. While her work has a loose and lyrical quality to it, she is most interested in the viewer identifying their own story in her work.
Karen’s work is a compilation of vintage photos, acrylic paint and unknown origins. She works without thinking, channeling the art through her. The paintings tell their own story, often interpreted by the viewer. She believes that by the time someone is viewing the work it is no longer hers.
At first glance, the haunting paintings of Benz and Chang appear to be vintage sepia photographs. Upon closer examination, they reveal themselves to be walnut ink drawings rendered by hand on watercolor paper. The figurative paintings portray mysterious narratives that are largely left to the imagination of the viewer.
While the show primarily features each individual artists work, in the spirit of the title Exquisite Corpse, the artists have chosen to participate in their own version of the game. Each artist created work on a panel without knowing what the other artists had done; only the connection points between the panels were revealed to one another. Nanette, Karen and Benz have created a couple of Corpses for this show. The outcome is surprising and exquisite, and not to be missed.
by Nanette Wallace, Karen Wippich, Benz & Chang, mixed media on panel
Picasso in Paris
by Karen Wippich, Acrylic Mixed Media, 48” x 30”
Pink Pants in the Park
by Nanette Wallace, Acrylic on Paper, 22” x 30”
Second Heart, 1912
by Benz and Chang, Walnut ink on watercolor paper, 14.5” x 11.5”
by Nanette Wallace, Karen Wippich, Benz & Chang, mixed media on panel
Join us for a new show featuring the striking works of two Portland artists, each exploring the limits of their chosen medium: Karl Kaiser & Justin Auld.
Saturday July 28th
6 pm to 9 pm
Though Karl & Justin may work in different mediums, there is an unmistakable kinship in their striking use of color and dimensionality. Both draw inspiration from the patterns and textures of nature, and push their medium to the limits in their unique explorations of perception and form.
The tendency to perceive a specific, often meaningful image in a random or ambiguous visual pattern. The scientific explanation for some people is pareidolia, or the human ability to see shapes or make pictures out of randomness. Think of the Rorschach inkblot test.
My work explores the phenomenon of pareidolia. The link between what the eyes deliver and what the brain constructs is a loose connection; we perceive images, intent, and patterns where none exist. The brain’s ability to see what is not there yields a fundamental connection to the unknown, and touches the edge of what is possible in our perception. Pareidolia therefore raises doubts on all that we encounter visually. By emphasizing selected forms within random images, my work asks viewers to contend with the thin veil overlaying their understanding of what is real, and invites them to balance on the edge of where visual reality is formed by the mind.
“When you look at a wall spotted with stains, or with a mixture of stones … you may discover a resemblance to various landscapes … or, again, you may see battles and figures in action, or strange faces and costumes, or an endless variety of objects, which you could reduce to complete and well-drawn forms. And these appear on such walls promiscuously, like the sounds of bells in whose jangle you may find any name or word you choose to imagine.” – Leonardo da Vinci
I consider encaustic to be my primary medium because of the unique depth and texture it brings to my subjects. I manipulate the wax through scraping, using impressions and smoothing techniques to evoke the complicated but perfect natural world around me that I find through my camera lens. My signature technique is carving into deep multi-colored layers bringing a richness and complexity to the work. It has been described as sculptural and I continue to push the boundaries in that direction. I am drawn to linear abstract themes and carving back through layers of color feeds that inspiration. During my early career, I created series of abstract leaves, petals, and trees using this technique. As my work shows, I am drawn to color (blues, oranges, yellows, reds). I use pigments to make my own paints encompassing the entire color spectrum.
A new path I am taking with my encaustic is creating spherical abstracts. This came as a complete accident. A client came to my studio and saw my working table top with colored wax spilled over it. It looked like one big spherical abstract painting and she wanted it for her home. This caused me to explore this idea more and has brought about a new direction for me that compliments my landscapes in color and organic form.
I am also creating a new collection of acrylic paintings that use the same premise of my encaustic technique of layering.
Please join Ford Gallery for a group show presenting a stylistic variety of papercut work by several gifted Pacific Northwest artists.
6 – 9 PM
Long regarded a traditional, illustrative craft, papercutting is increasingly recognized by the fine art world as a technically impressive medium capable of conveying a wide range of concepts. The works in Papercut! range from expressions of ephemeral fragility, to subversive and nostalgic references to folklore, to emotionally intuitive abstract pieces.
Ford Gallery is proud to host the Recycled Rain Project’s 2018 Exhibition.
6 PM – 9 PM
The Recycled Rain Project is a Pacific NW based invitational art show creating original works using rainwater to raise awareness of water issues. Since its founding in 2011, The Recycled Rain Project has been dedicated to its mission to increase awareness of local artists and to engage and educate the community on water issues.
A portion of the sale of all works from RR2018 will be donated to Columbia Riverkeeper. For 30 years, Columbia Riverkeeper’s mission is to protect and restore the water quality of the Columbia River and all life connected to it, from the headwaters to the Pacific Ocean.Our strategy for protecting the Columbia includes working in river communities and protecting the people, fish and wildlife that depend on the Columbia River.
Join us for food, drink & art works from a bevy of talented local artists, all created using recycled rain water!
Enjoy the RAINDROPS GALLERY painted by kids at Sellwood Community Center,
and make your own raindrop at our Recycled Rain Painting Station!
PLUS new works by our veteran Recycled Rain Artists!
Amy Ponteri, Candace Primack, Di Pinsonault, Jane Levy Campbell, Jennifer Feeny, Jesse Nearns, Jody Katopothis, Jon Wippich, Karen Wippich, Karl Kaiser, Kia Metzger, Kindra Crick, Kristen Hamilton, Laura Weigle, Nanette Wallis, Nate Ethington, Quin Sweetman, Rio Wrenn, Roberta Aylward, Sara Sjol, Shawn Demarest, Theresa Andreas-O’Leary, Zeratha Young