I find the NW Art awards show to be enjoyable,and a good lesson in the diversity of NW art, although snobbish attitudes by the curator did prevail ( see D.K. Rowe's article in the OREGONIAN A&E, and KBOO interview on Art Talk last month)--it's an underfunded show, and I think the museum needs to PAY all the artists the $10,000, or whatever, but, to give one big sum and then less, seems trite and insulting. Get it together Portland Museum and raise some money for this show, or don't do it.Make all the winners equal in pay. To say that "all are winners" (as the curator said over and over in the interviews) is not convincing at all (it seems condesending and too defensive) and to use "professional" arts organizations (etc.) as a resource is so limiting and who knows who...I am sure there are many museum members who disagree with this policy of choice. This show of art was a pleasure for me, but, the issues of how they make their choices and how one out of 5 artists gets the big award, and the rest are left to wonder "why?"--get it together PAM, advertise in local publications about the show, and make it open to those artists who aren't represented by the art powers locally. As a professional artist and educator, I find of the show disturbing, not because of the art, but, because it seems like some sort of institutional "insider" vs. "outsider" (or the have's and have nots)- yeah, I'm a "have not", but, I am not whining (as the curator called those who disagreed with the process in the A&E article)-- Be more democratic PAM, and stop making excuses. Pay everybody the same. Mel Paca
Poore Artiste CoOp Atelier
Mel, your post sounds like sour grapes. If you don't like the way the CNAA is run, or the way award money is awarded; get the resources together, advertise in local publications, and start your own awards program.
Not so! I just want equality in the money, an established organization like PAM should have the resources to up the money...I doubt that I'll be starting my own awards program--why do you have to be so personal and mean spirited?
The problems were not with the art, it's about money and selection processes.
Sorry, Mel. I did not mean to be personal and don't think my comment was mean spirited.
You called the CNAA process "trite and insulting", then went further to say "I find the show disturbing..." due to the insider/outsider appearance.
So, I suggested that there is room for more than one awards show in the area and perhaps you should think about creating one which you would find more valuable.
Mel and all
Good discussion here and good points that all of you make. I had a very enjoyable time at the get together at the Lucky Lab Tuesday eve. It was great to meet Emily, Eve and others connected to the OPB team. I was however a little disappointed that many artists do not show.
I wonder here in the online discussion how many of you are artists. Have you all been though the creative process say in visual art and experienced exhibiting your work in a local gallery or online? As this was discussed in the talk show Tuesday morning.
I am not sure where I stand as an emerging artist, as a local born and raised here in Portland, yet I have possibly called into the Talk of the Nation program more than any other local Portlander- Once to Think Out Loud; and usually about the arts and my public astronomy melded to my art. My art has appeared in NASA web sites and ust last week on the Coast to Coast AM radio front page, but I see little or no money in this as a profession. It is more so a passion of mine since childhood.
I hope to see more discussion about this subject,
On the subject of "insider" vs. outsider, what is the Portland Art Museum and the NW art scene as a whole doing to make art more accessible to the public at large. This art awards show is doing a particularly good job of demonstrating just how insulated and removed from the general public the "institution" of the art world truly is. I must ask who these artists are creating their works for; because sometimes it seems like it is intended solely for other aficionados within the "inner circle," and not for humanity as a whole (which includes stay-at-home mothers, accountants, students, and the pizza delivery guy).
And why should art be for the public at large? If art is meant to appeal to the public at large, wouldn't it would make it average by definition?
There's an interesting, very personal recap of the PNAA award ceremony here:
Thanks for the plug David. This is my first time at the OPB site and I only came because my stats spiked because of your link above. Its wonderful to see people hashing it out, especially that stay-at-home mother and the pizza delivery guy. I'd be curious to see if everyone believes that accountants have trouble with Art, and whether Art should be for the Masses, or if special or elite knowledge is bad. As far as the award itself goes, Whiting was clearly uncomfortable about it. Grateful, but uncomfortable.
Where are all the comments from angry narcissistic artists? The ones who think their work should be included in everything local because it is oh so great and always pertinent. Maybe they are conceptualizing a large-scale attack?
It's quiet....too quiet... :)
Great subject for a show. I've been a successful commercial artist working all over the world for the past 25 years - living in Portland for the past 15 years. In the last few years I've been creating personal works of contemporary art and it seems almost impossible to get into any attention with the respected gallery in Portland - how can I best break-down those walls and get noticed?
One does have to wonder how modern, insightful and surprising any show can be that relies on the opinions of established others in the selection process.
great show everyone. i am curious if this will help spur more local/regional exhibits at PAM? i have always felt the museum was out of touch with the local art community, perhaps this is a big step to mend that.
Isn't the use of "highbrow" and "lowbrow" so, well, tired---that anyone who uses the terms automatically nixes their credibility?
I catch myself using them, and I scold myself.
Hope I am in time; 25 years in bcasting, incl bcast advtsing-- 5 in depth generates attn; 100 shallowly treated almost never will, unless by chance "HopefullyHelpful"
Damn, too late...... Expanding on my previous post, "Hope I am in time; 25 years in bcasting, incl bcast advtsing-- 5 in depth generates attn; 100 shallowly treated almost never will, unless by chance"............
For Jennifer's future 'defense/discussion' of the numerical part of her chosen process to generate attention about NW artists:
About me [no, not "All about me!" :-) ]
I spent 25 successfull years in b'casting
management, sales, and production,
managing, selling and producing,
television, radio, and live worldwide teleconferences--
One of the primary-- even more important than that? :-)-- mantras/principles of advertising, any advertising, is that one must "break through the clutter," i.e. get the reader's/listener's/viewer's attention JUST SO they will hopefully get to the point of making a decision?
positive OR negative?
about (in commercial broadcast/print formats, for instance)
the product the advertiser hopes to sell
(the reason he/she has invested, literally, in advertising).
Five of ANYthing, here NW artists, shown in depth, assuming an emotional response is elicited by each of their individual artistic expressions, makes a far more powerful impression than 1,000 artists presented superficially, and highly likely, with very little relative emotional impact in some cases. Why? On the receiving end, if you will, "Who has the time?!" to wade through a much larger number looking for a hint of mostly hidden substance. Conversely, we all will make time, or another way, will have our time and attention taken from us, if we are more easily 'forced' to take notice, yes? Yes. Definitely.
So, actually, choosing only five effectively will generate a great deal more interest for ALL NW artists when, to coin a phrase, "all is said and done."
Sympathetic to Artist-ville
(Sympathetic to the enormously difficult life
an artist has often chosen because of their
?self-overpowering? need to create, above all else--)
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