Things to do in Portland this weekend: (05/18/12 – 05/20/12) “Thesis Exhibition opening reception at the Ten Four gallery & Annual Spring Art Sale at OCAC & Oregon College of Art and Craft Graduation Commencement”


The Oregon College of Art and Craft (OCAC) Thesis students are putting on a group show of their own in downtown Portland, Oregon(Friday, May 18, 2012 from 6-10 pm on the corner of NW10th Avenue and Hoyt in the Pearl District).

This is a very important event for our students. Each thesis student has spent the past year creating a body of work, and this final exit show is an opportunity to display their work as an entire group, and, to a broader group visitors. You can show your support by visiting the following site (which has more details and examples of the students’ work):

More information here:

Where:  Ten Four (formerly the Attic Gallery) | NW 10th Ave. and Hoyt

When:   May 18th, 6 – 10pm. Runs through May 31st (11am – 7pm, Tuesday – Sunday).

Phone: 503 297-5544



Buy local and support Portland’s emerging artists at the annual Oregon College of Art and Craft Spring Art Sale. Explore the functional, inventive and sculptural ceramic, book arts and fibers pieces, as well as the affordable, limited edition original jewelry created by OCAC students.

Organized by faculty, students and alumni, the sale proceeds fund the participating student artists, visiting artists, and the purchase of studio equipment.

Admission is free and open to the public.

Where: Oregon College of Art and Craft | 8245 SW Barnes Rd.

When:   Saturday and Sunday, May 19th  and May 20th.

Phone: 503 297-5544




Public Reception 2:30pm-4:30pm

The Board of Trustees of Oregon College of Art and Craft is pleased to announce commencement exercises for the graduating class of 2012 at the Jean Vollum Drawing, Painting and Photography Building on the OCAC campus.

Johanna Branson | Commencement Speaker

Johanna Branson was graduated fromWellesleyCollegewith a B.A. in art history; she received a PhD in the same field from Brown University in 1976.

Dr. Branson has published widely on modern and contemporary art. Special projects have included Seeing Through “Paradise”: Artists and the Terezin Concentration Camp, an international exhibition and catalogue; Homeland: Use and Desire, an exhibition of contemporary art from the American southwest; and essays on topics ranging from Kara Walker to Huynh Phuong Dong, a Vietcong artist and soldier.

Dr. Branson spent her professional career at the Massachusetts College of Art, first as Professor of Art History, and then as the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs.

Dr. Branson is currently a Fellow of the National Association of Schools of Art and Design, and continues to serve as an accreditation team chair. She is also a consultant and speaker on various topics in higher education, art, and design.

Where: Oregon College of Art and Craft, Jean Vollum Drawing, Painting and Photography Building | 8245 SW Barnes Rd.

When: Saturday, May 19th, 12pm (invitation only) 2:30 – 4:30 Public Reception | Free!

Phone: 503 297-5544




Wendy Landry quote on Pamela Ritchie’s jewelry: “for the viewer, the question arises …”

“[F]or the viewer the question arises as to whether the wearer of a Ritchie ornament is being adorned and their personality expressed, or instead, whether the wearer’s body operates as a mobile gallery, showcasing Richie’s expressive material poetry, inviting approach and contemplation. Paradoxically, like much fine craft today, Ritchie’s work is more often seen in a pristine gallery setting or published photograph, without the modifying effects of wearer, garments, or other objects, or particular social contexts of use. While the gallery setting focuses the viewer’s attention on the works, it does not indicate the idiosyncratic and complex manner in which the jewelry will be incorporated into socia life.” (26)

Landry, Wendy. “Pamela Ritchie: Nova Scotia’s Intellectual Gem.” Metalsmith. Vol.32, No.2, 2012. pg 22-31

57. “The Eccentric Teapot: four hundred years of invention” by Garth Clark.

This Friday, May 18 OCAC Metals Department will be hosting their Annual Tea Party featuring teapots handcrafted by the 3rd year students from the Metals Department. In the 3rd Year Teapot Class, students design and create – through raising and forming, large scale soldering and fitting processes – a functional, sterling silver teapot in this intensive course. They make decisions about construction methods and design, choose materials for handles, and study historical and contemporary examples of teapots and other hollowware. The course, essential to the vocabulary of a metalsmith, has traditions dating back to ancient history that are still practiced today. Techniques associated with creating a hand-made teapot give students the opportunity to leave OCAC and make a living through creation of utilitarian objects.  They also come away understanding design and function and how to balance these two components.

image: Lizzy Gladstone, 2011

To celebrate this annual event and possibly entice readers interested in the subject to explore more about teapots and teapot making, the library has selected Garth Clark’s amazing book on the subject, The Eccentric Teapot: four hundred years of invention. As the stated in the book cover, this book “introduces us to some of the most sublime, outrageous, and exotic teapots ever to grace a Mad Hatter’s tea party”! There are portrait teapots of Oscar Wilde, Brooke Shields, and Queen Elizabeth. Teapots that resemble lions, tigers, and bears–Oh My! And teapots that are “so far removed from the concerns of function that they resemble nothing so much as drawings of teapots”! The result is a fun and exhilarating romp through a colorful gallery of idiosyncratic designs that begin to boggle the imagination and stretch one’s notion of the relationship between form and function! Also the concept of beauty – or what is beautiful – since many (at least IMHO) of the results are profoundly ugly but always always always provocative and thought-provoking!


Check it out!

Support the OCAC Thesis Students’ Exit Show!!

The Oregon College of Art and Craft (OCAC) Thesis students are putting on a group show of their own in downtown Portland, Oregon (Friday, May 18, 2012 from 6-10 pm on the corner of NW 10th Avenue and Hoyt in the Pearl District)… and they need our help!

This is a very important event for our students. Each thesis student has spent the past year creating a body of work, and this final exit show is an opportunity to display their work as an entire group, and, to a broader group visitors. You can show your support by visiting the following site (which has more details):

49. “Abstracting craft : the practiced digital hand” by Malcolm McCulloughby

Metals studio manager, Jennifer Wall will be giving a lecture entitled Craft in the Digital Age in the Centrum Studio at the OCAC campus today (Monday, March 19th) at 12:45 pm.

The talk will discuss her work as well as historic and contemporary precedents for using technology in the craft realm (and vice versa).

More information about Jennifer Wall and her work can be found here:

Inspired by Wall’s lecture topic, the library has selected the following title for this week’s library pick: Abstracting craft : the practiced digital hand by Malcolm McCulloughby.

The publisher provides a rather thorough summary of this work:

“The love of making things need not be confined to the physical world – electronic form giving can also be a rewarding hands-on experience. In this investigation of the possibility of craft in the digital realm, Malcolm McCullough observes that the emergence of computation as a medium, rather than just a set of tools, suggests a growing correspondence between digital work and traditional craft. Chapter by chapter, McCullough builds a case for upholding humane traits and values during the formative stages of new practices in digital media. He covers the nature of hand-eye coordination, the working context of the image culture, aspects of tool usage and medium appreciation, uses and limitations of symbolic methods, issues in human-computer interaction, geometric constructions and abstract methods in design, the necessity of improvisation, and the personal worth of work. For those new to computing, McCullough offers an inside view of what the technology is like, what the important technical issues are, and how creative computing fits within a larger intellectual history.” –from the publisher.

This is a most intriguing book and one that is somewhat difficult to keep on our shelves. While some of what the author discusses occasionally feels a little dated, most of the discussion has held up well over the last 15 years.

It will be interesting to see how Jennifer Wall’s lecture might pick up where this book has left off. Come check out her lecture, and, if you can find a copy, check out this book too!


Judy Arginteanu quotes Doug Meyer: “He also welcomes …”

He [Doug Meyer] also welcomes the patina old metal has. “I’m working with material that might have been used for maybe 40, 50 years, and it bears the distress of what it’s gone through. That’s nothing you can make happen–it’s something you have to let happen” (019).

Arginteanu, Judy. “Product Placement : Necessity, Mother of Cool Furniture.” American Craft. October/November 2011. pgs 018 – 019.

30. “Content as Character: the Sculptures of Christine Clark 1995 – 1998” by Kate Bonansinga from Metalsmith, Spring 1999.

In the Centrum Studio at OCAC today, Christine Clark will be giving a Lunch-time lecture about her work. Clarkreceived her M.F.A. from the Rochester Institute of Technology in 1983, and she has been on faculty since 1984. While she teaches traditional metalsmithing techniques and jewelry courses, her personal work tends to be more abstract and sculptural, mixing a variety of materials. She is also a member of the Nine Gallery in Portland. Don’t miss her talk today! More information can be found here.

For this week’s library pick and in honor of today’s lecture, we’ve decided to take a glimpse into Christine Clark’s past work and selected an article from Metalsmith, a journal published by the Society of North American Goldsmiths (SNAG), that showcases and looks critically at Clark’s work from 1994 through 1998. At the timeClark was working with woven forms of steel wire filled with organic matter, forms that “resemble a corseted female form, an allusion to subservience and Victorianism” (Bonansinga, 30). Yet the more recent work at the time, as Kate Bonansinga notes, had left “the Victorian references behind” and “Forms that were once constricted, bound, and pierced now seem to be moving through their pain and looking toward a brighter horizon marked by curiosity and growth” (30).

Come down to the library and check out the rest of the article or other issues of Metalsmith (our backfile goes all the way back to its first issue in 1975 and continues to the present). My apologies for the pun, but there are a lot of great gems from that magazine and we’re proud to be able to its entire magazine run for perusal.

Hope to see you at the lecture! It will interesting to see how Christine Clark’s “curiosity and growth” have developed in her more recent work and making process.

Bonansinga, Kate. “Content as character: the sculptures of Christine Clark 1995 1998.” Metalsmith 19.2 (1999): 30-7. Art Full Text. Web. 7 Nov. 2011.