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Daily Art Moment: Edward Penfield

Congratulations to the Class of 2021! This charming poster, advertising the June edition of Harper’s Magazine, gives a nod to the graduates of 1895. Artist Edward Penfield is credited with inventing the American publishing poster, a boom that thrived in the 1890s. Each month, Penfield created a lithograph to promote the magazine. He drew on…  Read more

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Daily Art Moment: Samantha Wall

“The shadow is both a part of our identity and apart from it. It is our counterpart and sometimes the truer part.” —Samantha Wall, 2021 Flayed is a drawing from Samantha Wall’s series titled, Shame on Me, hauntingly rendered as a self-portrait silhouette and shadow. Though much of the figure’s details are unknown, Wall beautifully…  Read more

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Daily Art Moment: Minami Keiko

Minami Keiko’s etchings offer the magic of fairy tale-like, narrative settings. Her fine touches on the printing plate and understated colors result in delicate, sometimes whimsical scenes. For me, she is often sweet without being cloying. Yet some prints hint at a deeper and more mysterious sense of ennui, loneliness, or alienation. Minami was orphaned…  Read more

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Daily Art Moment: Peri Schwartz

I was saddened to learn of the death of artist Peri Schwartz on May 7. I first met Ms. Schwartz in 2016, and was captivated by her paintings and prints that focused on the studio life. She took the humble material around her—stretched canvases, paint brushes, and jars of paint and ink—as the starting point…  Read more

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Write Around PAM: Romare Bearden

As we celebrate Mother’s Day this Sunday, we invite you to think of a person who has been a strong maternal presence in your life. It could be your mother, grandmother, auntie, close friend, teacher or other care provider, another parent, guardian, or person close to you. Someone who embodies the care and love and…  Read more

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Daily Art Moment: Derrick Adams

As warmer weather approaches, we are all dreaming of lazy summer days. This recent acquisition by Derrick Adams captures the pleasures and poignancy of timeless summer afternoons. Using 68 puzzle-cut woodblocks, seven runs of screenprint, and fabric collage, Adams depicts a young boy resting on a gigantic inflatable swan in an expanse of blue water.…  Read more

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Daily Art Moment: Barbara Earl Thomas

“I think about salvation and redemption, where in the world it might come from. Who and what in the end will save us from ourselves. One can only imagine what shape any God might take.” —Barbara Earl Thomas With this work and related pieces, Barbara Earl Thomas explored humanity’s relationship with nature. Depictions of the…  Read more

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Daily Art Moment: Diego Rivera

Today we celebrate Mexican-American civil rights leader, Cesar Estrada Chavez, a former migrant worker who co-founded the UFW (United Farm Workers) with fellow activist, Dolores Huerta, which fought for unionization for laborers. Chavez, influenced by the non-violent tactics of Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr., used strikes, boycotts, and picketing to achieve equity for these…  Read more

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Daily Art Moment: M.C. Escher

As we move into spring from winter, I am reminded of M.C. Escher’s woodcut Day & Night, which captures another transition. In this engaging yet perplexing image, white and black birds appear above the checkered fields below, marking the switch from the nocturnal to the diurnal. Escher plays with negative and positive space, light and…  Read more

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Daily Art Moment: Félix Vallotton

In 1896–97, Félix Vallotton captured the private joy and solace of music played only for oneself. In Musical Instruments,” a suite of six woodblock prints, he used the sparest means to depict solitary musicians in comfortable, domestic settings. The Portland Art Museum recently acquired two prints from this series: one depicting a cellist in his…  Read more