Monday, June 28, 2010

Opening This Week At Waterstone Gallery ...

Sacred Moments
R Keaney Rathbun

Waterstone Gallery
6|30 - 8|1|2010

R Keaney Rathbun's compelling artwork spans an array of media and motifs from bas relief sculpture to silkscreen printing, stained glass, and needlepoint. His work leads the viewer to discover moments of sacredness in life’s experiences, from walking the dog to waking with the memory of a vivid dream fresh in our minds.

This installation promises to be a treat, transforming Waterstone Gallery into a street side chapel and inviting us to share Rathbun's rich inner world.

A cornerstone of this installation is a portfolio of Keaney's vibrant silkscreen prints. Rich and complex in subject matter, personal symbolism, and color, many are created with up to sixty silkscreened layers, giving them startling impact for works that can easily be described as miniatures.

Several in this series are framed and presented in storyboard fashion with five individual prints per panel with images reminiscent of cave-paintings and pictographs from America's southwest. Others convey a quirky medieval quality, with Rathbun’s personal religious iconography.

My favorites are Rathbun’s sculptures: engaging, playful, and symbolic, they suggest and reflect innocence, wonder, and vulnerability.

Rathbun's individual works carry familiar and enigmatic themes that bypass the intellect and go straight to the heart of the matter. They have the effect of transforming the viewer’s perceptions, effectively turning the artist into a shaman, which, I believe, is the unique role of an artist. If this is true, then R. Keaney Rathbun is a master.

I highly recommend viewing this installation at the preview reception.

Sacred Moments, R Keaney Rathbun

June 30 - August 1, 2010
Preview Reception: Wednesday, June 30, 6-9pm

Waterstone Gallery, 424 NW 12th Ave, Portland, Oregon 97209

image: The Intentions Of Others, mixed-media

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Nothing, Yet Everything, To Do With Art

There are moments when I feel literally sick to my stomach at the devastation in the Gulf of Mexico. I can only imagine how heartsick are the people who have lived there for generations.

This feels karmic. Payback for our greed and aggressive overuse of the planet's resources. We are literally being buried in oil. It's as if She's saying: "You want oil? I'll give you OIL ... . So much oil that it will wipe you out. So much oil that I will have a good excuse to start over."

Anthropomorphic personification of Mother Earth aside, cause and effect is definitely in play. The people and animals of the Gulf States are paying the price. Sacrificed in order to wake us up to our addictive and unconscious behaviors.

How does this pertain to art and artists? Simply put, artists and visionaries are now, and always have been, the hope and saviors of the human race, with the ability to see and dig deep into our collective and planetary psyche.

One such visionary artist, Kevin Costner (no matter what you think of him, at least we can give him that), has developed a siphoning system that will collect the oil and release clean water back into the gulf.

Check it out and contact your representatives. Get them on board and let's get this solved.
Watch the latest breaking news, politics, entertainment and offbeat videos everyone is talking about at Get informed now!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Art On Fire! by Jules Altfas

Tempest, Jules Altfas

I do believe that we may be witnessing a new art form in Jules Altfas' retina-searing exhibit of monotype prints, Art On Fire!

Described as a fusion of sculpture and printmaking, and formed with heat and smoke, these resin-cast monoprints embody flame, passion, color, and a courageous approach to art making that challenges our definitions of printmaking.

See the work, meet the artist, and learn about this exciting, challenging, and exacting process.

Third Thursday, 6|17, 5:30 - 8:00pm at PAN Gallery | Washington County Museum
PCC Rock Creek Campus, 17677 NW Springville Road, Portland, Oregon 97229

Opening the same evening are two new exhibits at the Washington County Museum:
Dorothea Lange In Oregon: 1939 Farm Security Administration Photos
Connections: Quilting 1930s and Today

To learn more, call us at 503.525.9259,
or email us at

Tempest, Jules Altfas
resin-cast monoprint

Random Thoughts

It's past time to update and my apologies to any who may be wondering where I've been. Keeping up with facebook and twitter, planning and coordinating new exhibitions for PAN and digging in the garden between storms have kept me thrice busy. (Now there's a word you don't see much. Is there an equivalent for 'four'?)
I'm also making way for Darling Daughter, who is moving in with Mom at the end of the month. It seems she is called to become a midwife and has begun an apprenticeship that, at the end of her 18-month program, will make her a Certified Midwife in the State of Oregon. This is my way of helping her to achieve a dream. She will move in, worm-bins and all, in a couple of weeks. I'm honored, actually, that she thinks she can live me ... .
I've moved the bulk of my office/studio into the 'great room' of my modest home. The ugly part is still left to complete: Files. Oh, bane of my existence!
My new office space is really kind of spiffy, however. Nice big sunny window with orchids and tomato starts zooming upward. (Will there even be tomatoes this year?) I enjoy watching the sky show, when there is one. Currently: partly sunny! One of the pleasures of living in the Willamette Valley, that should never be taken for granted, is the passing drama of the sky that blesses us daily. It frustrates me when I hear Matt Zaffino refer to our 'black clouds'. Anyone with half an eye can see that they're really indigo and violet with crimson auras and teal highlights.
That may be enough of the 'random thoughts'. A nice break from the business of promoting art.
God Bless Artists ... .