Monday, March 03, 2008



Sometimes art can become separate from life. Put on a pedestal. Something to be viewed at a museum. Something from the past. But it doesn't have to be that way and this last weekend's SE Artwalk was proof that art is about life, everyday life and everybody can enjoy it.

The 5th Annual S.E. Area ARTwalk included the work of over 90 artists in 52 different locations in Southeast Portland between Hawthorne Street and Powell Boulevard. Giving Portlanders a wide range of businesses and studios to walk, bike, eat, and explore art. The K & F Coffee served great espresso and tea as well as the wonderful felted creations of Bonita Davis and architectural glass of Donald Leedy. Cadenza Academy featured the abstract figurative works of Joel Barber. Annie Meyer's studio showed ceramic tile paintings and monotype prints. Palio Dessert and Espresso featured the work of Abernethy Elementary School students. New Horizons Hair Design showed the art clay silver pieces of Cheryl Cook. And Metalurges featured three sculptural artists, Susan Levine, Robert McWilliams and Rabun Thompson. Just to name a few of the many art stops along the route.

The largest art gathering was at Fire and Earth featuring over 30 sculptors. Members of Pacific northwest Sculptors Guild held a group show that stimulated the imagination and tickled the creative tastebuds of artwalkers of all ages. On display were crayon-colored sculpted fish, penguins and geese. Graceful abstract steel figures. Beautiful bronze figures. Kinetic clocks. Mosiac pillows. Clay figures and reliefs. Carved wood pieces. Copper repousse'. Bronze animals, dragons, and fish.

In addition to the art, the artists were on hand to answer questions about the techniques and process that goes into to creating the works of art. And there were artists doing demos that included clay figures and a large sand sculpture to the delight of all the artwalkers.

So much to see and two whole days to take it all in. And take it in, many Portlanders did. Despite rain, hail and sunshine, the artwalkers just kept streaming into the PNWS exhibit. After all, what's a little rain in portland, the liquid sunshine city anyway? Sun or not, what really shined was the art.

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