Spring 2018 Arts & Events

Posted on 03/19/2018
Extracted from Pearl Magazine

Hippity Hop Bunny Hop in the Pearl

The Easter Bunny will be spreading gladness and glee in Jamison Square Park the Saturday before Easter. Venture out with your friends and family—especially youngsters—for pictures, hugs, an egg hunt, music, art projects, a raffle, and sweet treats with this charming cotton-tailed friend to all. Mar 31, 10:30 a.m.–2 p.m.

Portland Center Stage

Where: Gerding Theater at the Armory, 128 NW 11th Ave,

When: Kodachrome, Feb 3–Mar 18; The Magic Play, Mar 3–Apr 1; And So We Walked, Mar 31–May 18; Major Barbara, Apr 14–May 13; Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar and Grill, May 26–July 1

The spring season brings a mix of classic and contemporary fare, from George Bernard Shaw’s witty Major Barbara to Lady Day, a poignant “all-access pass to Billie Holiday’s final concert.” And in a new work, The Magic Play explores how a young magician grapples with how his skillful on-stage trickery can’t compensate for personal relationship challenges.

Rachel Escoe at J. Pepin Art Gallery

After studying for seven years at Alberta College of Art and Design, Rachel Escoe returned home to Portland to pursue her love of glass work. The April show “Outlook” showcases Escoe’s latest pieces and represents her outlook on life, “including the things she has experienced through bonding with people and nature,” says the gallery. J. Pepin Art Gallery, 319 NW 9th Ave, 503-274-9614, jpepinartgallery.comApril 3–28

Alison Eriksen at Backspace Gallery

This music-related show, focusing on notation, composition, counterpoint, or polyphony, features a mix of sculptures and monotypes by Alison Eriksen. Also check out works by Basic Space’s newest artists, including acrylic painter Liz Thoresen, ceramic sculptor and encaustic painter Deborah Bridges, and Portland encaustic painter Dianne Jean Eickson. Basic Space Gallery, 327 NW 9th Ave,
971-319-0441, Throughout May

Field Guide

Posted on 03/9/2018
by Ellee Thalheimer
Extracted from Pearl Magazine
The neighborhood’s largest green space is more than just a lush, verdant lawn. See all that the Fields Park has to offer.

It’s easy to see why The Fields Park is such a beloved hangout. Couples lollygag around the park’s perimeter, frisbee tossers flock to the large oval lawn, children dangle from the playground’s cargo nets, and French bulldogs and Labradoodles romp in the enclosed off-leash area.

With a riverfront view from its northern end and several eye-catching public artworks and sculptures, the park feels like an intentional space and a hub for the neighborhood. Sleek condos, such as The Encore, overlook the park and lend a community vibe. Ovation Coffee sits on the periphery, dispensing creamy lattes for sipping on park benches. In the stunning Cosmopolitan Tower on the park’s southern edge, you’ll find a few more choice options for snacking. A Pizzicato slice can quickly warm up a drizzly day, or try the hand-picked matcha from Tea Bar. The Cosmopolitan also houses the fantastic Catalan restaurant Can Font. Here you can end your park wanderings with a memorable full meal, or even just a glass of Cava and a plate of cured meats and Catalan bread at the scene-y bar.

If this eclectic mix sounds intentional, it’s because it is: The park’s success is rooted in a dynamic collaboration between the city, neighborhood residents, and commercial investors.

In the early aughts, rapid residential growth loomed. So Prosper Portland (formerly the Portland Development Commission) and commercial property owners collaborated to create The Fields, Tanner Springs, and Jamison Square parks to help continue Portland’s legacy of desirable green spaces.

“The parks are the Pearl’s river-centric spin on downtown’s Park Blocks concept,” says Anne Mangan of Prosper Portland. “There’s a clear link between investing in green space and economic development. Healthy, connected communities attract people and business.”

“There’s a clear link between investing in green space and economic development. Healthy, connected communities attract people and business.”

The Fields Park is the newest of the Pearl’s green spaces, and its architects leaned heavily on community input. In 2007, a group of landscape designers huddled with dozens of Pearl residents in a deserted office building for a daylong charrette (a term used for the intense effort of architectural students collectively solving a design problem).

During the charrette, designers and residents clustered into working groups. Kids chimed in with ideas. Participants walked the wide pedestrian boardwalk on Northwest 10th that connects all three Pearl parks with the Willamette River.

“In the end, we used lots of bits and pieces from the charrette,” say George Lozovoy, landscape architect and project manager at Portland Parks and Recreation. “The shape of the lawn—an ellipse—is the central organizing form, with the sidewalks and other features spiraling off like a river eddy.”

Check it out for yourself. And don’t forget your frisbee.  – Ellee Thalheimer