July 25, 2009

Stock Portland - Dinner tomorrow!

Our first STOCK dinner and artist grant event is this Sunday, July 26th. Please arrive between 6:00 & 6:30pm to be seated for dinner and begin taking part in selecting the winning artist's proposal. RSVPs encouraged.

The dinner menu comes straight from the lush local gardens and farms, all cool to beat the summer heat:

Roasted Summer Squash & Bean Caponata with Chard
Sweet Beet and Potato Salad - Pink!
Pesto Pasta
Massaged Kale Salad
Seasoned Fresh Cucumbers
Greens and Vinaigrette

+ Artisan Bread & Hibiscus Sun Tea

Just $10 for a full dinner, plus the chance to vote on which project wins the grant money. This month there are 10 proposals that will be vying for your affection. Come check them out, size them up, tell people what you think, hear what they have to say and be a part of deciding who will walk away at the end of the night with all the money.

hosted by:

Gallery Homeland
2505 SE 11th Ave.
at the corner of Division

Parking lot just south of Division on SE 11th



I'm teaching a 3D design foundations course this summer.
The students are keeping images of our projects and activities at: Summer Session
The picture above is from an activity on our first day where students worked in small groups to build the tallest structure possible using only newspaper and masking tape in a 2 hour period.


July 11, 2009

G-Rad Saturday Soup

InCUBATE lists a weekly soup delivery program in Grand Rapids, Michigan, Saturday Soup as one of their inspirations. It's somewhat humorous to me that the final post on the Saturday Soup program talks about the demise of this project. On the other hand, I think that having access to information about Sara's soup challenges is a great place to try and glean some information about what to look out for in running a soup program. The lesson: it seems that Saturday Soup was a weekly soup delivery service gone awry due to the fact that the soup maker was possibly a bit too generous in her money collection strategies. It looks like Saturday Soup was a labor of love for soups, but that maybe the love/money equation became a little off balance.

Sara lists some other inspirations:
The Soup Peddler, David Anselm in Austin, TX
and the following information:
the word soup comes from the teutonic word for suppa which refers to a medieval dish consisting of a thick stew poured over hardened peices of bread called sop. this concept of using sop is still implemented today. think french onion soup. The word restaurant was first used in France in the 16th century, to describe a highly concentrated, inexpensive soup, sold by street vendors called restaurer.

ronald reagan's favorite soup was hamburger soup.
william shatner's is carrot vichyssois.
and barbara walters likes roasted eggplant soup.


Sunday Soup User Handbook

Here are scans of the Sunday Soup User Guide created for InCUBATE by Hideous Beast.
It's meant to be printed double sided and then quarter folded.
Charlie of HB says that printable PDF format images can be found at:


Field Test + Sunday Soup Mashup

I have been thinking about Hideous Beast's project Field Test, a project wherein Josh and Charlie attempt to re-create other artists' projects and then make public the documentation of their results. It reminds me of the work I did as an Americorps Volunteer at Caldera - trying to develop and document systems for use by future volunteers and employees of the organization. In the case of a lot of socially engaged work, artists suggest new ways of interacting with the world, implying that the value of their pieces lies in their use, repetition, and modification, rather than their value coming from economic capital due to scarcity.

In preparation for the STOCK artist grant program, I decided to try and create a Field Test/SundaySoup mashup of sorts.

First, I emailed Bryce from InCUBATE to see if he could give us any more information about other Sunday Soups that he's aware of so that I could spread out my research. He responded:

"Other soups have so far taken place in: Grand Rapids, Mexico City, Newcastle, and Houston. Although I feel like I am leaving a couple places out.

Here is documentation from Newcastle: http://saturdaysoup.wordpress.com/

There is also this group that has started a similar program in Brooklyn called FEAST (Funding Emerging Art through Sustainable Tactics -- wonderful, isn't it!?) They've been doing it in a church basement (although they're on hiatus for June and July because the basement gets too hot). They have also managed to get a lot of food donated and, because it's New York, a ton of people come. Accordingly, they've been giving out big, chunky grants. I met one of their members, Jeff Hnlicka, when I was in New York for a panel on Alternative Arts Funding not too long ago. Anyway, they have a pretty nifty website built with indexhibit (free webpage building web interface thing): http://www.feastinbklyn.org/

I think it would be great if ya'll started a Sunday Soup (or whatever else you wanted to call it) in Portland! Field Testing it via Josh and Charlie is like the butter on top! ...Did you see the handbook they made for Soup that's in their little library boxes?"

I emailed Josh and Charlie and got the following response from Josh:

"Your inquiry about the field test 'process' points to something we've been itching to formalize but haven't really done yet. the basics (and if i miss anything i'm sure charlie will chime in) are to 1. find an instruction set 2. contact the authors if possible and chat with them about the project 3. use the instructions and any info gathered from the authors to do the project 4. document the results, noting how shifts in context, audience, resources, etc. affect the outcome 5. we also make a 're-manual' where the original instructions are included with our notes and documentation.

the part we haven't really worked out is the 'evaluation' implied by the title, 'field test' -- to me, the evaluation takes place in noting contextual differences and other possible applications. it's not so much about a measurable effectiveness - though maybe it should be?

open to any thoughts - this one has been somewhat dormant for a bit, so we'd love the opportunity to spark it up again."

So here goes...the beginning of an attempt to recreate the works of other artists and document how it goes. In the meantime, if anyone out there has ideas on how to evaluate the program, let me know.


July 6, 2009

Next up: Stock

I'm working with Ariana Jacob and Amber Bell on an artist granting program called Stock.

We have a call for proposals out right now at: www.portlandstock.blogspot.com