CITIES Opening

Please join the Museum for an opening of Design with the Other 90%: CITIES in the Upper and Lower Galleries on Friday, August 17.

Design with the Other 90%: CITIES
August 17, 2012 – January 05, 2013
Design with the Other 90%: CITIES is the second in a series of exhibitions organized by the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum that demonstrate how design can be a dynamic force in transforming and, in many cases, saving lives.

Organized by Smithsonian Cooper-Hewitt and co-hosted with Mercy Corps

Posted on 08/13 at 12:14 PM

Member’s Preview

Museum members, please join us for a special rooftop reception.

Note: Due to the high temperature forecast for Thursday, the Members’ Preview reception will take place in the Lab at MoCC. The rooftop will be open and available after the program for guests to enjoy the view, but refreshments and the program will be indoors.

RSVP to or 503 821 8887. Space is limited!

Design with the Other 90%: CITIES
August 17, 2012 – January 05, 2013
Design with the Other 90%: CITIES is the second in a series of exhibitions organized by the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum that demonstrate how design can be a dynamic force in transforming and, in many cases, saving lives.

Organized by Smithsonian Cooper-Hewitt and co-hosted with Mercy Corps

Reflecting on Erik Gronborg: Selections by Jeffry Mitchell
August 17, 2012 – January 05, 2013
Erik Gronborg employs archetypes of functional ceramic traditions as conceptual vehicles to explore contemporary culture.

Posted on 08/11 at 11:45 AM

Free Admission

During the installation of Design with the Other 90%: CITIES, the Museum of Contemporary Craft is offering free admission to the Reflecting on Erik Gronborg exhibition and Oregon Potters Association: 30 Years of Best of Show.

On Friday, August 17, the Museum will resume its normal admission charge.

Posted on 08/08 at 11:36 AM

August Gallery Feature


Wednesday August 1, 2012 6pm – 8pm

Join us in the next of our series of First Wednesdays, special events for the Museum of Contemporary Craft community and patrons of The Gallery. These intimate receptions give you the chance to meet our monthly featured artists and get the very first look at their latest work. We’ll have complimentary wine and refreshments on hand, so be sure to stop in and say hello.

Raïssa Bump
San Francisco, CA

How do you layer clothing and jewelry in your daily adornment?

Fueled by the tactile contrasts between the hardness of metal and the softness of fiber, San Francisco-based Raïssa Bump’s jewelry reveals unique qualities of both materials: strength, flexibility, and color. Her pieces merge handwork, such as stitching, weaving, and knotting with industrial production techniques and materials, such as screens. When worn, her jewelry offers a layered effect that reveals the rich histories of personal adornment, which we invite you to experiment with while making your selections in the Gallery at MoCC.

Since earning her BFA from Rhode Island School of Design in 2003 and study in Florence, Italy at Alchimia School of Contemporary Jewelry with Giampaolo Babetto, Bump has built a national reputation for jewelry that combines the hardness of metal with the softness of knitwear, tapping into the human desire to adorn.

Sarah Loertscher
Seattle, Washington

How do natural forms shape an artist’s aesthetic?

Sarah Loertscher’s jewelry revolves around the hard-edged yet organic forms of crystalline growth. Her geometric aesthetic relies on simple wire shapes and a variety of techniques to explore the angles and slightly chaotic structures of these natural forms. Raised in Indiana amidst open fields of corn and sweeping skies, the Seattle-based artist credits her minimal aesthetic, in part, on the impact of this expansive yet industrial Midwestern landscape. Simple and elegant, Sarah’s work is being made available to Portland audiences for the first time.

Loertscher earned her BFA in metalsmithing from Ball State University in 2003, followed by a Core Fellowship at Penland School of Crafts in North Carolina, where she expanded her graphic and line-based work.

The Opulent Project
Portland, Oregon

How can production jewelry address conceptual questions?

Working collaboratively as The Opulent Project, Meg Drinkwater and Erin Gardner call attention to our disconnect with how things are made. In “Meet Your Makers,” the duo invites people to think about what is most important to them about jewelry: the role of the designer/maker, machine-like perfection, or visible marks of hand-making processes? Installed side-by-side across a wall, the placement of dozens of pairs of earrings across a surface reveals the productive side of imperfection in a visual display that morphs as purchases are made and spots become vacant. As you make your selections, you may see differences between the available pairs that are otherwise invisible elements of production
processes – making your selections unique, too.

The Opulent Project was founded in 2007 as Meg and Erin completed the BFA program in Jewelry and Metalsmithing at the University of Oregon. From their Old Town/Chinatown studio in Portland, the collaborators use jewelry to explore the cultural disconnect in a society that places value on the handmade object without understanding making processes at the studio or production scale.

Allison Ullmer
Portland, Oregon

How does technology inspire new forms of adornment?

Today, iPod earbuds are as visible and common as earrings. Portland-based
Allison Ullmer uses such disposable, mass-produced items as a springboard to consider new cultural forms of adornment. Rather than repurpose technological parts, Allison renders their forms through the classical, time-consuming process of stonecarving. Replacing the gemstone with a new kind of stone form, her rings merge tradition and technology, resulting in new, hybrid forms of contemporary jewelry. This body of work, available for the first time in Portland, was part of her MFA thesis.

Based in Portland, Allison Ullmer’s work has been shown nationally and internationally, most recently at the Marzee 2011 International Graduate Show in the Netherlands and the Crafts National 2012 Exhibit at the Mulvane Art Museum in Kansas. She earned her BFA from the University of Oregon, and an MFA from SUNY, New Paltz.

Stephanie Webster
Portland, Oregon

How does the way jewelry is worn relate to natural phenomena?

Focusing on Cordyceps, a form of parasitic fungus that afflicts insects, Stephanie Webster employs the way in which a brooch is worn by a “host” to expose parasitic social behavior. Using the natural world as inspiration, and social behavior as motivation, Webster creates work that reveals fractures in the social fabric, portable memorials to the effects of parasitic behaviors. The brooches, available for you to “host” for yourselves, originally comprised Stephanie’s installation titled “Ego induced fracture in the social fabric.”

She earned her BFA in Jewelry and Metal Arts at California College of the Arts after studying Metals and Painting at North Seattle Community College.

Posted on 07/30 at 03:02 PM

Music of Many Lands

In conjunction with Generations: Betty Feves, the Museum of Contemporary Craft presents a concert of classical music and new music composed in tribute to Betty Feves on Friday, July 27. This original performance remembers her not only as a visual artist but as a violinist, community activist, teacher, and mentor. Features violinist/composers Mark Menzies, Andrew McIntosh, and Melinda Rice. Organized by Julie Feves.

Music was as vital a foundation in Betty Feves’ upbringing as was art. She began music lessons at the age of six and studied classical violin all throughout high school. In some of her early sculptures, her work sometimes covered musical themes, in pieces such as Musician (1949), Two Musicians (1954), Harmonica Player (1955), and Chorus (1958).

Posted on 07/26 at 06:39 PM

Director’s Corner

July has already proven to be an exciting month here at MoCC. I am thrilled to greet you today as the newly appointed Director and Chief Curator. This institution has been a part of my life since I moved to Portland in 1997, and it is both an honor and a privilege to take on this role.

I want to introduce you to two members of the Board of Directors – Dr. Joe Bloom and Randy Higgins. They joined the board this month, and are already hard at work on projects with the Museum. If you see them in town, be sure to talk with them about MoCC.

We also bid farewell to Kathy Abraham and Linda Aleskus, who have each completed two terms on the Board. The Museum and College are deeply indebted to these committed board members for their time and guidance through the past six years.

On the staff side, Kat Perez, who has been my partner in the curatorial department for nearly 7 years, is leaving the Museum to take up residence in Denver, Colorado. Portland’s loss is definitely Denver’s gain. She will be missed.

Nicole Nathan returns to the Museum this month as the Curator of Collections and Registrar. Nicole worked for the Museum, directing the transfer of artwork from 3934 SW Corbett Ave to our present location, designing our collection storage, and handling all registrarial work until 2008. Having her back at the Museum helps us continue to work on building, researching, and sharing the collection in a number of ways. You can learn more about her on the Museum website.

Special thanks, too, to Sarah Newhall, who has served as our interim director for the past three months. She’s been a pleasure to work with, and though her work in this role is done, we have no intention of letting her get too far away from MoCC!

We also welcome Ryan King, our Windgate Intern who will be working with us for the next six weeks on several exhibitions and projects. Thanks to the Windgate Foundation, Ryan joins us from the Corcoran, where he is completing graduate studies in exhibition design.

Following on the outstanding press for Generations: Betty Feves, we anticipate great conversations to emerge from the upcoming Design with the Other 90%: CITIES exhibition, co-hosted with Mercy Corps. Do take advantage of these last few weeks to come enjoy the Betty Feves exhibition – and please mark August 16 for the Member’s Opening for Design and Reflections on Erik Gronborg: Selections by Jeffry Mitchell.

I’ve just returned from three weeks in Europe, where I spent time meeting numerous contemporary art jewelers, art historians, designers, and artists. I look forward to devising ways to bring those connections to Portland, and to sharing what Portland offers with my new colleagues.

Please come say hello if you attend the music events on July 13 and 27!

Namita Gupta Wiggers

Posted on 07/11 at 06:28 PM

Windgate Intern Announced

Earlier this year, Museum of Contemporary Craft was awarded $5,000 in direct support of a Windgate Museum Intern through the Center for Craft, Creativity, and Design. Each year, the Windgate Foundation selects four institutions for this support, and the Museum is deeply honored to be among this year’s awardees. After a competitive selection process, the Museum chose Ryan King, Master of Arts degree candidate in Exhibition Design at the Corcoran College of Art + Design, for the internship position. King joins the Museum’s curatorial staff this summer to assist with the research, planning, writing, exhibition design, and installation of upcoming exhibitions, and will be blogging about his experience on Untitled, PNCA’s online magazine.

Posted on 07/11 at 06:16 PM

Thank You

Thanks to you, the Museum of Contemporary Craft in partnership with Pacific Northwest College of Art has met the Miller Challenge. Museum members, board, and faculty, and staff from PNCA joined in to push us over the top. In the final 72 hours of the challenge period, we received over $3,000 in gifts and new memberships to help us raise more than $72,000, meeting our goal. Thanks to your generosity we will receive a matching grant of $35,000 from the James F. and Marion L. Miller Foundation to support exhibitions and programs at the Museum. Thank you!

Posted on 07/11 at 06:03 PM

Musical Performance

Chamber Music Northwest and the Museum of Contemporary Craft present an intimate evening to celebrate the special connection of music and art in the life of one of Oregon’s most influential artists, Betty Feves. Musician Julie Feves, her daughter, has performed every summer at Chamber Music Northwest since 1974. Joined by CMNW artistic director David Shifrin and two young Protégé musicians, Julie offers a tribute to the role that music played in her mother’s life.

Music was as vital a foundation in Betty Feves’ upbringing as was art. She began music lessons at the age of six and studied classical violin all throughout high school. In some of her early sculptures, her work sometimes covered musical themes, in pieces such as Musician (1949), Two Musicians (1954), Harmonica Player (1955), and Chorus (1958).

Reservations should be made through Chamber Music Northwest by calling 503-223-3202 (ask for Seth Truby) or emailing $50 per person, includes private concert, exhibition viewing, and refreshments

Ludwig van Beethoven
Duo in C Major for Clarinet and Bassoon

W. A. Mozart
Duo in G Major for Violin and Viola, K. 423

Katerina Kramarchuk
“Falling for Grace” for Violin, Viola, Clarinet and Bassoon

David Shifrin, clarinet
Julie Feves, bassoon
David Southorn, violin
Andy Lin, viola *Katerina Kramarchuk, composer, is one of the 2012 Protégé Project artists

Doors open at 6:30 for refreshments, the concert takes place at 7:00 in The Lab, and the exhibition will be open to explore until 8:30.

Posted on 07/09 at 04:01 PM

Museum Staff Grows

Nicole Nathan joins the Museum staff as Curator of Collections and Registrar. Nicole has been involved with MoCC since 2006, when she managed the move of the collection from Corbett to the Pearl District. Since then she has worked as contract registrar for a number of exhibits at MoCC including Generations: Betty Feves and 75 Gifts for 75 Years.

Previously, Nicole held the position of Director of Collections and Exhibits at Oregon Nikkei Endowment in the Old Town/Chinatown neighborhood. She was responsible for setting the overall vision and goals as well as administrative oversight responsibility for all exhibits and collections and increased the number, quality, and attendance at public and education programs 233% from 2009.

Nicole has specialized in collections management and development, as well as project management and exhibit production. Her experience with collections includes over 15 years of working with artistic, ethnographic and historical objects.

She serves as Chair of the Registrar’s Committee – Western Region, and serves on the Century of Action Board and the Multnomah County Cultural Coalition. Her position, Curator of Collections & Registrar aims to expand the Museum’s curatorial department, and increase the capacity of access to 75 years of collections.

Posted on 07/06 at 06:37 PM

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