Lucinda Parker: “Knowledge is Not Our Enemy”

Until December 2nd you have a chance to see Lucinda Parker’s new paintings at the Russo Lee Gallery (805 NW 21st Street in Portland)…most done in the last three months.  The show is entitled “Knowledge is Not Our Enemy” which sounds possibly political, but isn’t.  It’s about mountains…most specifically our own MT. Hood.

This morning Lucinda Parker spoke to a large group at the gallery about painting, ideas, process, and the thinking that goes into art making…in an energetic and articulate way…the same way she paints.  We learned about scree, we learned there is a volatile air draft just above Mt. Hood that draws the clouds there (as we often notice) we learned how she mixes colors and how she thinks about the things she paints.

You may have noticed that I’ve been writing quite a bit about Parker’s work lately (here, here and here, for instance) and there is a reason beyond just that the work is so good.  Roger Hull is curating a retrospective of Lucinda Parker’s work at the Hallie Ford Museum of Art in Salem for 2019 (January to March), and has been working on a monograph on Lucinda for the last year (which she has seen and annotated…), working title “Lucinda Parker: Force Fields”…which means a lot of looking and talking about this work at our house.

Earlier this week (in preparation for hearing the talk) we went up to the mountain cabin she and her husband have had for 20 years…a cabin with a drop-dead view of the mountain from the kitchen table.  The day we went…snow-fog-snow…no mountain.

No worries though, as the show has several of these views for us…

An interesting thing for an innocent bystander (me) watching the books and the pile of work grow is that Lucinda Parker and Roger Hull share a few qualities.  Neither is a native Oregonian, both have spent most of their adult life here and both do work that is as good as anything painted or written in our country.  And BOTH choose to see the strengths of “regionalism” beyond that label.

Today Lucinda shared with the audience some of her sources, which for the artists in the crowd was terrific…the front of the Hood River telephone book (mountain) and a postcard from a Caravaggio show she saw in Rome (clouds)

and then this happened…

so really, go take a look as these beautiful and energetic paintings of WHERE YOU LIVE.  And while you are there check out Roll Hardy’s detailed and beautiful landscapes of industrial places and spaces…they are lovely and deserve an entire post, but I only have so much energy…  Here is one of Roll Hardy’s pieces called “The Ancient Order”…

We went on to an invitational drawing show at Gallery 114 (100 NW Glisan ST in Portland…in the basement, entrance off Glisan) curated by artist Mark Andres…it was a varied group of drawings by a wide variety of Portland artists and quite a delightful show…especially as drawings are not shown much these days….go take a look at these…no discourse here except to say that coming straight from Lucinda’s show, two drawings jumped out…

then Louis Mateo’s drawing in walnut ink

George Johanson’s immediate drawings in ballpoint pen (a medium I’m liking lately)

a delicate and sort of poignant Tom Prochaska line drawing…

and an energetic Harry Widman “Image Invention” pencil drawing…

William Garnett using a phone book…

and best of all…there’s a catalog…very little is published about Northwest Art so it’s always nice to see something in print…(with William Garnett’s “After Masaccio’s Expulsion” on the cover)

this show is worth seeing.  Our first visit to Galleryy 114.





  1. Wow – what a wonderful piece. Thank you!
    Thank you for showing so many of Lucinda Parker’s paintings, and sharing a conversation about what she thinks she is doing – the Caravaggio thing is out of this world – thank you for the showing the knockout work by Roll Hardy, and thanks for the rest. A lovely outpost this morning.

    1. Thanks How…I should go back and do Roll Hardy’s paintings as they are wonderful. The one pictured is what is happening (again, like the 1960’s when Heaney was painting the tear-downs)…I think every artist has a bulletin board or taped pictures they use in painting and I really liked seeing Lucinda’s ideas…ideas can be plucked out of the air, or in this case put into the air!

  2. the BEST publication of news that comes into our email! and you appear to be the only one who noticed that a big fish swam by the window. we haven’t been to portland for awhile, but we’re going to have to take the time and see these two shows. lucinda can PAINT…she is a maestro of PAINT. we can hardly wait for the show at hallie ford accompanied by another of roger’s riveting (& illuminating) monographs.

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