Metro Life Update
Here are some arts/entertainment/activity news items as we navigate the health economic crisis (and civil unrest):
• Murals — Muralists continue to try to beautify some of our blank building walls, and boarded-up windows, around Portland. These are organized, creative and endorsed projects, and not graffiti/vandalism.
The Portland Street Art Alliance has organized a new project for five murals in Southeast Portland — all by local female-identifying artists.
It's called "Ladies Up," and artists will be painting murals at Morrison Place, 1401 S.E. Morrison St., property owned by Killian Pacific, through June 8. It's part of a unique, donation-based community mural program, in which PSAA provides curatorial control and artists provide considerable open creative freedom in their work.
The mural nonprofit said that female/femme/non-binary artists are highly underrepresented when it comes to overall access to painting in public space. So, not all perspectives are being told in the artistic landscape; it's an art form that has been male-dominated, PSAA said.
The mural team includes Tatyana Ostepenko (born and raised in Ukraine), Salomee (Algerian/Peruvian born in Switzerland), Amaranta Colindres (Santa Ana, El Salvador), Isis Fisher (Hawaii), Kyra Watkins (Cincinnati) and Sunny Beard (Reno, Nevada).
For more: www.killianpacific.com.
In addition, the Old Town Mural Project started last week (#pdxartistsgive). Artists are giving time to add mural art to three boarded-up Old Town storefronts (at 115 N.W. First Ave., 223 S.W. Ash St. and 500 N.W. Davis St.).
Artists include Adam Brock Ciresi, Eyedrawp, Amy Ruppel, Leah Samour, Alicia Schultz (Vine & Thistle), Sophie, Consu Tolosa, Jennifer Urquhart and Arielle Zamora. Portland Art Museum donated paint; Urquhart, the coordinating artist, is a support of PAM and is married to Don Urquhart, PAM director of collections and exhibitions.
• Online lectures — The Voices Lecture Series had to cancel its remaining 2019-20 lectures, but it plans to resume lectures in spring 2021. See www.voicesinc.com for more.
In the meantime, it has launched the Voices Reunion Tour, a monthly series featuring past speakers in a Q&A format on Zoom.
June 11 — Ruth Wariner, author of "The Sound of Gravel"
July 9 — Marin Alsop, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra music director
Aug. 13 — Lisa Shannon, co-founder and CEO of Every Woman Treaty and women's rights activist and scholar
Sept. 9 — Asenath Andrews, founder of Catherine Ferguson Academy, a Detroit alternative public high school for teen mothers and education service for their children
Oct. 15 — Elaine Sciolino, a New York Times contributing writer and former Paris bureau chief
• Cool show — A Portland violinist, looper and vocalist, Joe Kye, is curating a weekly livestream on his Facebook and YouTube channels and is inviting guest artists for collaborations and conversations, performs musical improvisations, hosts a kids' corner (i.e. parental break) and instigates dance parties. It's called "Cup o' Joe," and Kye calls Fred Rogers his hero and "Mister Rogers' Neighborhood" his inspiration.
His next show features illustrator Mike Bennett, creator of "A to Zoo" public art, a playful yard display with animals beginnig with every letter of the alphabet; Bennett has gained notoriety by creating cartoon wood cutouts and placing them in Portland neighborhoods.
It was originally scheduled for June 6, but it has been postponed to June 13.
Future guests are: Ching Ching Wong, a Princess Grace-winning dancer; Andru Defeye, a Sacramento poet; Sharon Nyree Williams, a Seattle-based storyteller and arts organizer.
Kye was born in Korea and raised in Seattle.
• No summit — The 2020 Pan African Festival and Black Business Summit, scheduled for August in Portland, have been canceled. "Please know that the festival/summit 2021 will continue and we deeply hope that all of you will remain involved," a press release stated.
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