My friend Ellen calls the sort of day where you go from event to event to event without a breath a “bag day.”  Our whole week was that way last week so we booked a hotel room and headed to Portland for two nights.  We saw a lot of art, took a few naps, caught up with loved ones and enjoyed a sunny and crisp weekend in the city.  Our parking karma was excellent.

We arrived Saturday in time to hear Tom Cramer speak wittily, interestingly and with feeling about his new work up at Augen Gallery in November.  The show was dedicated to Shannon Kraft, Cramer’s long time friend who died last summer after a long illness.  She was muse, editor, critic, cheerleader and this is the last body of work she saw and contributed to.  The gallery was packed and the crowd was enthusiastic and warm…and EVERYBODY was taking pictures…

Crowd 3Crowd 2crowd 1

The work is beautiful, original, delightful in every way…I was sitting on a stool and looking up at the edge of one piece, so did a little survey of the terrific “edges”

edge 5

edge 1edge 2edge 4

In his talk Tom spoke of his philosophical ideas, his methods of working, and the difficulty or working through Shannon’s illness and death, and how that figures into the pieces.  It was fascinating and the work is…well…glowing…a perfect tribute to a lovely woman.  Go take a look in the waning days of the month.

detail Tom 2

Of course…next stop…

coffee

and then a brief detour into Waterstone Gallery where there was this giant wood face by Michael deForest…

face 1face 2

which has the most GORGEOUS interior…

inside face

and then on to the Laura Russo Gallery to see the Lucinda Parker show.  I was quite taken with Parker’s giant painting “Old Cherry”…

Lucina Parker "Old Cherry

which for me is such a great combination of color and absolutely ATHLETIC painting it seemed choreographed as much as painted…

Parker Detail 3Parker detail 2Parker detail 1

OOPS..the rest of this post got lost in the publishing…Happy Thanksgiving!