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Remembering, in papier-mâché

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Monday, January 10, 2011

TomProchaska_Art1-smYou see it every day: Passers-by hold up a cellphone and snap a digital shot of something they want to remember—a dress in a storefront window, a just-delivered plate at a spendy restaurant or a too-cute pug puppy. Then there’s mixed-media artist Tom Prochaska. Relying only on his memory, he perfectly renders 20-inch-tall by 7-inch-wide papier-mâché figures that bring to life people he last cast his eyes on fortysomething years ago.

 

Greetings from Transluscentville

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Monday, January 10, 2011

LaureneHowell_Art2-smIf the harvest moon wanted its luminosity perfectly captured, it would seek out glass artist Laurene Howell to cast its portrait.

Born in Idaho and raised in Portland, Howell, 64, was a dental hygienist for six years before she decided to go to medical school at age 29 and become an ear, nose and throat surgeon. “I’ve been interested in art since grade school, but I didn’t start taking art classes until 15 years ago,” she says. “I took a watercolor class that took me to the Greek island of Mykonos, where I discovered watercolor wasn’t my medium. Then I lasted a day and a half in a three-day painting class. I’d play with collage and embellishments from time to time. I’ve always been fascinated with glass art, but when I was practicing medicine, I couldn’t do anything with glass because I couldn’t risk cutting my hands.”

 

Playing with wood in a modern yet primal way

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Monday, January 10, 2011

TotemShriver_Art1-smNative peoples living on the islands in the South Pacific would recognize a kindred artist if they saw the bas-relief works of Ballston, Ore., woodcarver Totem Shriver.

He takes hand tools to thick planks of Oregon big leaf maple, ash, spruce, cedar, black walnut and Oregon white oak to create neo-primitive woodcarvings.

 

Silver-and-felt “topiaries” for non-wallflowers

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Monday, January 10, 2011

SarahFox_Art1-smIf you like to pop an all-black outfit with one crazy piece of jewelry, you’ll love the attention-getting rings, earrings, cuffs, brooches and necklaces that Sarah Fox fabricates.

 

A Painter “Journals” with Found Materials

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Tuesday, November 09, 2010

portfolio-4Turning 50 this spring was more than a daylong celebration for mixed-media artist Katherine Mead. To commemorate her milestone birthday, the Lake Oswego, Ore., artist spent the previous year creating 50 new works of art, which she unveiled at a show she called “50 at 50” in the gallery space of a Northwest Portland architecture firm in August.

 

Anthropomorphic Vessels from an Architect

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Tuesday, November 09, 2010

portfolio-3David Piper is a man of many identities.

By day, as an associate at SRG Partnership Inc. in Portland, the architect juggles the design and building of commercial structures such as a hospital in Honolulu. By evening, he is husband to his architect-wife, a daddy to their 3½-year-old son and, once he heads down to his basement studio, the potter behind David N. Piper Ceramics.

 

Zen and the Art of Quilting

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Tuesday, November 09, 2010

portfolio-2In the mid-1980s, a corporate downsizing at U.S. Bank and a diagnosis that one of her three daughters had Rett Syndrome, a degenerative neurological disorder, led Sally Sellers to leave behind computer programming work and take up quilting contemporary textiles.

 

Playing with Fire

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Tuesday, November 09, 2010

portfolio-1Forget finding a hot date via the ads in the back of your favorite magazine: Dean Mook found a profession he’s still crazy about—blacksmithing—while perusing the ads in the back of Mother Earth 35 years ago.

 

Dress-Making with Paint and Canvas

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Tuesday, September 21, 2010

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Most couture designers end up with a garment only after months of sketching, pattern-making, fabric-cutting, sewing, fitting and embellishing with ribbons and beads. Not painter Sue Lau. She takes brushes loaded with thinned-down acrylics to canvases topped with archival tissue paper to create her dresses, each of which captures the essence of a place such as Paris or Barcelona.

 

Vessels with a Certain Glow

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Tuesday, September 21, 2010

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Luminosity is a hallmark of the pieces that husband-and-wife glass artists Heather and John Fields produce as Fields & Fields Blown Glass in Portland.

 

Cut. Place. Assess. Tweak. Repeat.

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Tuesday, September 21, 2010

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Denise Sirchie has a passion for making mosaics, one hand-cut piece at a time. Her sculptures and panels begin with the selection of a form (think vintage mannequin, gazelle-shaped knickknack or Plain Jane frame gleaned from a thrift shop or estate sale) and the gathering of materials—mostly recycled items such as jewelry, china, stained glass, marbles, tile and slingshot pellets—from different shelves in her studio, a former detached garage behind her Multnomah Village-area home that her contractor-husband transformed into a cozy mosaic-making place.

 
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