It was the necklace made of Legos that first caught my eye. It was red (my favorite color), detailed and nostalgic. I picked it up and placed it around my neck, imagining all its little pieces separating and dropping to the floor. The piece was impressive, and thankfully sturdy, but it was not quite right on me. Next I was drawn to a large circular piece made of felted wool. Frankly, it reminded me of a flaccid hula hoop studded with an intimate male body part. I wrapped it around me, but felt it begged for a wilder girl. Thinking I?d never find a piece I connected with, I spotted something smaller, colorful, hanging low on the wall. I bent down to take a closer look. It was a necklace made of gelato spoons. Being a huge fan of gelato, I loved the piece immediately. It was me.
This was part of my experience last Sunday at the Museum of Contemporary Craft. It was my first visit. Not only did I make a love connection with the gelato spoon necklace, but also with the museum as a whole. I can?t recommend it highly enough.
They have an exhibit right now called ?Touching Warms the Art,? which features jewelry made of alternative materials, such as rubber, plastic, fiber and found objects. The museum encourages visitors to try on the art, and it was great to see both adults and kids having fun with this opportunity to play dress-up. The museum also provides a Mac computer that you can use to snap photos of your decked-out self. The photos are posted on Flickr, where you can download your images as a keepsake of your visit.
In addition to engaging exhibits, the museum frequently hosts events to bring artists and the community closer together. The Spring Guild Fair was going on during my visit. Artists from nine local groups showed their artwork, gave demonstrations and chatted with visitors. The groups included:
- Portland Bead SocietyCreative Metal Arts GuildGuild of Oregon WoodworkersOregon Potters Association
While I was there, artist Kristin Yount demonstrated her skill with the wheel. Kristin makes functional pottery like bowls and sake sets, and her designs are colorful and sassy (which I like).
The Museum of Contemporary Craft has been around for more than 70 years. Its mission is to connect the community with skilled craft artists and their work. Toward that goal, admission is free.
?Touching Warms the Art? ends on Sunday, March 23, so stop by this weekend if you can. The museum is located in a beautiful space on the North Park Blocks, near Powell?s Technical Books. Given its convenient location and free admission, there?s no reason why anyone should miss this gem.
724 Northwest Davis Street Portland Oregon 97209
Hours: Tuesday?Sunday 11 am to 6 pm, Thursday 11 am to 8 pm
Article By Amy Reyes, Around the Sun Blog