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Every city or town is formed, in part, by the industries which develop it. People create
a community and sense of place based on shared goals and experiences. Over time
these features develop a history, a legacy, and a heritage.

Kenton is no exception. The story of Kenton mirrors that of the entire Northwest
through it’s connection with ports, timber, and agriculture. A unique combination of
location and industry has crafted the story of Kenton. The people of Kenton have lived
and guided its path. This heritage is still with us today in the feeling of community, the
sense of history, the architecture, and the routes we take through our day.

Recently Figure Plant joined forces with the good folks over at the Northwood Apartments to create this 8′ x 20′ art piece for their lobby, celebrating Kenton’s History.

Northwood

Probably my largest wall art to date. It was a pleasure to work with Mary Hanlon of the Northwood and, as always, the Figure Plant team. Here’s the project description on FigurePlant.com.

Historic images provided by
Old Oregon, The Art of Historic Photos
Oregon Historical Society
Oregon Digital
Oregon State University Libraries
University of Oregon Libraries
Middle Tennessee State University’s Walker Library

Special thanks to
Alta Mitchoff’s History of the Kenton Neighborhood
Portland State University
Historic Kenton, and the Kenton Neighborhood Association
PDX History, and our neighbors and friends for telling the story of Kenton’s history.

Art Director Kate Madden assigned a series of cartoon Sasquatch illustrations, a variety of more realistic animal illustrations, and a full page map of the Mount St. Helens area.  It was a lot of fun to work in different styles, and then to see them come together in such an interesting and good looking feature!

Squatch takes part in a variety of outdoor activities, navigating the area, observing and photgraphing the unique landscape, and teaching us about it’s history.

Sasquatch Portland Monthly
Animals populate the map and field guide.  You can find out what these critters are up to here: Life Goes On: Mount St. Helen’s Flora and Fauna.

WildLife Portland Monthly
If you don’t get your hands on the magazine, read the full story here: The Essential Guide to Mount St. Helens

St Helens Portland Monthly

Now that the 2014 event is creeping ever closer with more meetings, events, camp planning and the like; it’s time for the third and final post on 2013’s Burn.

Here’s a look at my honorarium art project “Matahari Riset.”  Made possible with a grant from Burning Man, and the help and patience of my partner and many dear friends.  Thanks to Additive Workshop and Figure Plant for the generous use of their fabrication facilities.

MRraver

It didn’t take long for him to go native.  If you happened to get your picture taken with him please do let me know; I’d love to see them!

Take a look at all of the 2014 Honorarium Art Installations!

The art of Burning Man has always been one of my main motivations for returning to the desert year after year.  Here’s a few of the pieces that made me glad I was there in 2013.

Claude the Dragon by Gabe Zanotto, Jim Bowersclaude544“A 22′ long incredible work of recycled art! Everything (including) the kitchen sink went into creating Claude over his 20 year existence.”

The Art Department erupted in cheers when Claude the Dragon and his crew arrived; in part because they had planned on being there days earlier (having had their share of hang-ups and breakdowns along the way), and because we already knew that Claude was rad.  I had the honor of showing these fine folks to their site.  As I led the way to Claude’s new home, Gabe was at the wheel of a dying truck with Claude on his trailer, flanked on each side by his smiling family, creators, and friends.  Looking back from my cart it was somewhere between a parade and a bomber squadron.  Their happiness was so contagious I made sure to visit them through-out the week, bringing friends to meet the crew and see Claude’s intricate detail.  It was beautiful to see them so glad to share their art with this weird new audience in this most surreal place.  I’m confident that their entire crew was transformed by their experience, and that Gabe got better schwag than you or I.

Truth is Beauty by Marco CochraneTruth572
“Truth is Beauty is the second sculpture in a three-part series featuring singer/dancer Deja Solis, the first of which was Bliss Dance (2010)… These sculptures featuring women safe in the present to express themselves, are meant to help raise consciousness around violence against women, begin a healing process to make room for women’s voices, and ultimately result in a balance of energy that will allow women and men to thrive.”

Check out The Bliss Project for more on their amazing work.

Coyote by bryan tedrick
coyote566
“Coyote is a steel sculpture standing 25′ tall by 24′ wide. The head is kinetic and can rotate 360 degrees.”

Early one pre-event morning I had the pleasure of climbing into the rotating head of this beautiful piece.  It came highly recommended by the DPW who had just climbed down.  A fellow Honorarium artist happened by and chatted about her project, the difficulties of running a piece from London, and her favorites so far.  It was the kind of quite morning I remember from my first year at the event; filled with direct experiences with other people, their art, and the desert.  I’m glad I fit it in before my work started.