eva lake

Riding the musical merry-go-round

ArtsWatch Weekly: Thanks and farewell to David Shifrin, music virtual & live, news briefs, a gallery sampler, saving public art, left turns

IN A WORLD SO VOLATILE AND ABSURD that the president of the United States declares war on the post office (!), it might seem difficult to find a solid rock of stability, something to cling to with assurance and trust through snow or rain or heat or gloom of night. Yet for forty years David Shifrin has been just such a rock in Oregon: a musical anchor, guiding and safekeeping the estimable Chamber Music Northwest to a creative blend of traditional and contemporary music-making through a combination of grace, good humor, generosity, vision, variety, and a positively swinging clarinet.

David Shifrin, after forty years still caught up in the music. Photo courtesy Chamber Music Northwest

With the wrapping-up of the chamber festival’s virtual summer season, which drew 50,000 listeners worldwide for its 18 streamed concerts, Shifrin is finally passing the torch. Though he’ll continue to perform with Chamber Music Northwest on occasion, he’s passing the festival’s artistic leadership to the married team of pianist Gloria Chien and violinist Soovin Kim. In A hearty encore for David Shifrin, Angela Allen takes a look at Shifrin’s four decades of leadership and talks with several of the musicians who know him best, and to a person admire him. The reviews are in, and from his colleagues as well as the festival’s many fans, they are glowing.

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Crow’s Shadow’s art of the land

The Hallie Ford Museum's generous retrospective of 25 years at the innovative eastern Oregon print center reveals a vital sense of place

Ghost Camp, a four-piece suite of lithographs by James Lavadour from 2002, all but jumps off the wall as you wander through the generous new exhibit Crow’s Shadow Institute of the Arts at 25 at the Hallie Ford Museum of Art in Salem. Lavadour prints and paintings have a way of leaping like that: they have what curators and dealers like to call “wall power.”

But something else is going on in this suite, too. In that familiar Lavadour way Ghost Camp is partly abstract and partly taken from the spacious hilly land of eastern Oregon and Washington near Pendleton, where he lives. A scrawl of lines seems almost arbitrary until you look a little closer and realize they are deft intimations of shapes on the horizon or buildings breaking up the open spaces. Searing streaks of color suggest trees, red and glowing and perhaps – who knows, in a runaway fire season like this one? – on the way to being charred.

James Lavadour (Walla Walla, b. 1951), “Ghost Camp,” 2002, ed. 16, suite of four, four-color lithographs with graphite pencil on Arches 88 white paper, 34 1/4 x 43 3/4 inches overall, CSP 02-114 a, b, c, d. Photo: Dale Peterson

Oh: and, sticking up from the top right print like a towering forest snag, the jagged teeth of a giant crosscut logging blade grind relentlessly at the sky. The suite is inspired by Lavadour’s memories of a forest he used to wander as a child – a forest that’s since been clear-cut, and essentially no longer exists. The lithographs are at once an honoring of the past, a preservation of history, a documentation of a present state of mind, an act of beauty, and a lament. The more you look the more you see; the more you see the more you feel.

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Tempus Incognitus

photo from Brad Carlile's Tempus Incognitus. photo courtesy The Independent

 

The Independent is Eva Lake’s new pop-up gallery in the Pearl. You know Eva is an artist (who currently has work in the group show reCover at Frosch & Portmann Gallery in New York and is represented by Augen Gallery in Portland), a longtime gallerist, writer, and host of the Art Focus show on KBOO. The Independent opens First Thursday with Tempus Incognitus, photographs by Brad Carlile.

Here’s more on the show from Eva:

Carlile was one of the winners of the 2009 Hearst 8×10 Photography Biennial, an international competition for emerging photographers. The Hearst Biennial judges Peter Lindbergh, Mary Ellen Mark, Steve McCurry, Timothy Greenfield-Sanders, & John A. Bennette, III. chose 8 photographers from over 1,000 entries. Works from Carlile’s Tempus Incognitus series will be on view from July 7th through August 7th.

Empty hotel rooms from all over the world form the basis of these works, all shot in multiple exposures over time in slide film, with no post-exposure or digital manipulation. The rooms are electric with acidic color, yet spare and detached by virtue of their transient energy and occupation. The perimeters of shifted space and time are blurred, giving a result both classic and contemporary. Reception for the artist is July 7th, 6 – 9PM. Gallery hours are Friday through Sunday 12 – 6PM and by appointment. The Independent is located in the Pearl at 530 NW 12th in Portland, Oregon.