Reed Clarke, Alica Justus & Dawn Panttaja

MAIN GALLERY (July 28-August 23)
Artists Talk August 13 @2 pm

Reed Clarke "Always Ask More Questions" oil on canvas

Reed Clarke “Always Ask More Questions” oil on canvas

Reed Clark is painter and printmaker. His interest lies in the exploration of portraits and the figure, particularly in the expression of some level of human vulnerability that can only be half masked. His career spent in the field of psychology helped to focus his interest on the representation of persons as subject matter. Reed explains “I try to place subjects in the frame of a narrative arc that lead them to the moment depicted. Of course, I also want to manipulate the elements of line, color, surface texture, tone, shape, etc. for the pure enjoyment of doing so. In the end, I hope to elicit something in my work about being human that the viewer finds familiar and at the same time hard to put into words. If I’m successful, my work, like life, generates more questions than answers. Reed paints on canvas and typically starts a painting by working out much of the composition using acrylic paints to take advantage of their quick drying time. At some point in the process he shift to oil paints because he likes the way they move over the surface when painting and how they present opportunities for texture and color blending. He also works in the etching and monotype process. Each technique offers process and spontaneity, respectively.

 

 

FEATURE AREA (July 28-August 21)

Dawn Panttaja "Thee Denyce" ceramic

Dawn Panttaja “Thee Denyce” ceramic

Dawn Panttaja is a ceramic artist creating dolls/figures about the Portland cabaret scene of the early 90’s. She explains that Portland was home to a raucous, extravagantly fierce and unabashedly strange loosely knit group of musicians and performance artists. Performing every Sunday at the Satyricon, artists and audience shared nights creative chaos and sensual decadence. The only people recording these acts were the artists themselves. This show is in honor of those artists. “I hope to infuse my clay figures with the spirit of those folks who help turn Portland into a very fertile and wildly creative place. A “Paris of the ‘90s.” She works in a mid-range stoneware, using oxide washes and minimal glazes. Her use of a minimal color pallet was designed to turn her subjects into objects: icons of personalities who would have been more at home in dive bars and basement house parties than in museums. Says Dawn “Creating in clay is somewhat like performance art. You’re never quite sure how it’s all going to work out. Something can go terribly wrong… or right. Sometime what comes out of the kiln can far surpass anything I envision—or not. The ceramic artist deals in science, art and magic. The magic part is when you get lucky and everything works just the way you hoped it might.”

Alicia Justus "Buster and Anita" pencil & gouache

Alicia Justus “Buster and Anita” pencil & gouache

 

Alicia Justus primary medium is watercolor & gouache, but she enjoys sometimes using found mixed media, doing assemblages, and working with collage. Alicia is inspired by images from the past. She has “tried to give my pictures the look of an autochrome. First by drawing them out in pencil, and then coloring them in with gouache. I am a self taught artist who has been living in Portland for the last 20 years. I have written, illustrated, and self published tiny books during this time under the name of Red Star Art. I also have just had my first book professionally published recently through Show and Tell Press, a coloring book of silent film stars titled “Illuminating The Stars”. People are drawn in by the incredible detail and colors. Her work stirs emotions and calls to mind characters from the past, fairy tales, witches, and foreign places; they have a mysterious, dark, ethereal feel.