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Portland Photo Month

April is Portland Photo Month, an event which is not a product of any one organization, but rather a collaboration of art galleries, nonprofits and individual artists. Portland, Oregon is a city of artists and art enthusiasts and accordingly is home to a multitude of artists who express themselves through the medium of photography.

Numerous Portland art galleries specialize in photography. Among these are Black Box Gallery, Blue Sky Gallery, Camerawork Gallery, i witness gallery, Newspace Center for Photography, and Pushdot Studio. During Portland Photo Month, many of the other art galleries have centered their exhibits around photography as well.

The 23 Sandy Gallery features four photographers using books as a vehicle for their images.  Annie Meyer Artwork Gallery presents a body of work by Jennifer Zika, created during a sojourn in the Eastern European city of Bratislava, Slovakia. Black Box Gallery offers a themed exhibition, “Technology: High and Low.”

Blue Sky Gallery has a double-header; photographer John Faier’s series from the Queen of Heaven Indoor Mausoleum in Chicago, and a documentary-style exhibit by Nigel Dickinson focusing on the Smokey Mountain rubbish dump in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. Dickenson received the prestigious Critical Mass 2011 Solo Exhibition Award from Portland-based nonprofit Photolucida.

The Northwest Center for Photography’s i witness gallery explores works by Susan de Witt using photographic images produced by lith printing. Oregon history buffs will appreciate The Photography of Ralph Eddy exhibit at the Museum of the Oregon Territory, a rarely-seen archive of early 20th-century photos of Oregon City, the Columbia River Gorge, Oregon Coast and Mount Hood. The Newspace Center for Photography is hosting an exhibit of selected images from finalists among the Critical Mass 2011 submissions.

The Portland Art Museum (PAM) is now showing “Emerging: New Photography Acquisitions;” over 50 works selected by curator Julia Dolan from the more than 500 photographs added to the Museum’s collection over the past few years. Also on display at PAM through May 6th is “Through the Looking Glass, Photography’s Use of Windows, Doorways, and Mirrors.” Pushdot Studio has extended its exhibition of portraits by Tatiana Wills through April 27th.

In addition to these and other exhibits, there are numerous artists’ receptions, lectures and other events scheduled during Portland Photo Month. “Then. Now. Here.” is a slideshow of both historic and contemporary images of Portland which is being screened at locations around town. You can catch it on Friday, April 20th at Beam & Anchor (2710 N Interstate Ave., Portland). However, if you miss that showing, there is a continuous showing throughout the month on a television screen in the window at Blue Sky Galley (122 NW 8th, Portland).

Even though April is half over, there is still time to get out and enjoy the 2nd annual Portland Photo Month and the dozens of events and exhibits focused on the art form of photography.

Ralph Eddy_ Evening on Broadway_ Portland OR 1935. Courtesy Clackamas County Historical Society_ Ralph Eddy Collection

Thom Greifenstein _Portland Wept_2012