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Write Around PAM: Marie Watt

Seneca artist Marie Watt created Companion Species: Ferocious Mother and Canis Familiaris with the help of over 200 people who participated in two sewing circles. These collective efforts generated a powerful piece filled with energy and hope. The holiday season can be a time of collective joy and togetherness; it can also be a painful…  Read more

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Write Around PAM: Gail Tremblay

In this piece by Onondaga and Mi’kmaq artist Gail Tremblay, 35 mm film finds new life, transformed into a woven basket. Tremblay adapts Indigenous weaving practices, traditionally used to make ash splint and sweetgrass baskets, to this new medium. She “enjoys the notion of recycling film and gaining control over a medium that had historically…  Read more

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Write Around PAM: Nan MacDonald

As we shift our clocks back to standard time this weekend and our bodies adjust to the change, it feels like just the right time to pause and reflect on all this recent season has offered. Cooler and wetter weather, colorful leaves, harvests, celebrations, even a busyness of newfound routines. Whatever fall has offered you,…  Read more

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Write Around PAM: Silas Aittauq

Spirits, by Inuit sculptor Silas Aittauq, carries an energy that seems fitting for this season of Halloween, of harvest, of Dia de Muertos, and of remembering those who have passed. We invite you to take some time today to reflect on, and then write about, your own spirit in this moment. What parts of your…  Read more

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Write Around PAM: Kuna artist

The Kuna are Indigenous people living in present-day Panama. Mola, the Kuna word meaning “to cover” are hand-sewn, embroidered blouse fronts and backs made and worn by Kuna women. Artists use a technique called reverse appliqué to create Mola, layering two to seven pieces of different-colored cloth together. The artist cuts away parts of each…  Read more

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Daily Art Moment: Nez Perce artist

With the school year beginning, I began to think about children and how objects such as dolls are so universal. This Nez Perce doll was surely made for children in the image of women in her community. The clothing is composed of the same materials her relatives wore: soft hide for the dress, leggings, and…  Read more

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Daily Art Moment: Playing Cards

The Native American art collection of the Portland Art Museum contains a number of surprising objects that have fascinating but little-known histories behind them. This set of Apache Playing Cards is a rare example of a playing card tradition among the Apache with very little published research. There is some documentation that suggests playing cards…  Read more

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Art and Writing During the Pandemic: Celebrating the Write Around Portland Partnership

It has been more than one year since Write Around Portland and the Portland Art Museum began collaborating on weekly, art-inspired writing prompts to sustain our souls and our sense of connection during the pandemic. Write Around Portland staff and writing workshop facilitators have created over 60 writing prompts inspired by works in the Portland…  Read more

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Daily Art Moment: Jingle

The jingle is a symbol of Native North American women. This blouse with matching skirt, a possible precursor to the jingle dress, is an example of the ingenuity of Native design. This type of dress adornment and dance was first developed to heal and has continued to be a symbol of healing and female empowerment.…  Read more

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Daily Art Moment: Alison Bremner

Alison Bremner’s sculptural work, Two Dollars, slyly plays on the concepts of money and exchange. This small work, only 2 × 1.5 inches, emulates the shape of large copper shields which served as status objects among the Tlingit and other Northwest coast communities, displayed during potlatches to demonstrate wealth. (View an example on our website).…  Read more