Friday, May 3, 2013

40 X 40: Visit Object Focus: The Bowl Exhibit

Visiting this exhibit as the Portland Museum of Contemporary Craft was a great way to start out my 40 X 40 list and get my creative juices mobilized.  This exhibit, Object Focus: The Bowl is really about trying to create a dialogue within the arts community.  They encourage you to write, draw, respond to what you see at the museum and make you reflect upon the humble bowl and how little it has changed over thousands of years.The second part of the exhibit, starting May 16th, is going to be more interactive with a bowl library and events with local chefs and the like.  I guess I will have to go back and see the exhibit again! 
 The day I went to the museum it was free to go in because they are in the middle of installing the second part of the bowl exhibit.  I bought a membership anyways because I have been wanting to support this museum for a long time.   I was the only visitor wandering around among the bowls and the docent was very enthusiastic about talking about my favorite bowl or answering any questions.

Above is a bowl made of plastic knives.  Below is a carved stone Native American mortar. 
I love all the variety of bowls but felt like they shied on the side of too few bowls and the 50's and 60's were entirely over-represented for my taste.  I would have preferred a few more made in the last year as well as some more that were over 100 years old.

The one below is a hand painted wooden bowl.  Little tiny dots.  Lovely.  The plexiglass case made it hard to get a good photo.

Scale, texture, color; when you stop to look at them abstractly, they are little tiny sculptural works of art.

Even though I like to go to this museum every year, I actually heard about the exhibit on the New York Times in a great article about the impetus to put together this show and a link to the tumblr page where you are encouraged to upload a photo of a bowl and explain why it is interesting/important to you.  You can spend a couple of hours just reading the stories and looking at all the beautiful bowls attached by readers. 

These little bowls caught my eye.

Finally, when pressed by the docent on what my favorite bowl was, I had to admit it was this little brushed silver bowl.  This surprised me a little as I came in thinking I would be drawn to an organic, hand sculpted one.  Probably made on a metal lathe, but also possibly hand forged, it is absolutely delicate and strong at the same time.  And so, so soft with that finish.  I wanted to hold it and run my hands along the inside of it.  
If you are anywhere near Portland, get thyself to the Museum of Contemporary Craft!  (But after May 16th so you can catch all the added interactive goodies!)

No comments:

Post a Comment