The Art and Craft of Serena Blossom Appel

Posts tagged “People’s Art of Portland

10th Anniversary Big 500 Show 2017

The Big 500 Show is back in Portland, Oregon, and it’s their anniversary! I’m excited to see the show back at the Pioneer Place Mall, former home of Peoples’ Art Of Portland Gallery. Clearly the artists rock so hard that they got invited back for another appearance!


For my pieces this year, I am exploring more in-depth the fusion of a variety of mixed media materials, techniques, and processes:

It’s been a bit heinous getting ready for the show, after getting my own place, moving my household across the state in September, setting up my art studio in a whole new building, work transitions, health transitions, and so on. So I hadn’t had as much time or brain power as I’d like to be able to focus on what I wanted to do.

Yet, I’d wanted to give more time and opportunity to the part of me that loves to feel things, to play with materials and enjoy the colors and textures, to go with an intuitive vision. So I started with a mere flash of an idea- working with metal foil and making lantern-style light “boxes.” Add to that some cool finds in my materials stash that I hadn’t seen in years, and some beachcombed treasures, and I was off and running.

I’m excited about the possibilities with the light boxes, as it provides a sustainable way to light up a space that can last for a long time, has replaceable components, and uses minimal power. Also blurring the lines between art and functionality; pieces that are paintings or sculptures by day, can take on an added dimension by night.

I will be at the opening (get there by 2pm for a PARADE!) so I hope you can make it out! If not opening night, the show will be up through Christmas for all of your holiday shopping needs.




People’s Art of Portland: Closing Show April 16

It’s sad, but true: People’s Art of Portland will be closing its doors at the end of the month.

The gallery, and associated OneDer Gallery and Air Gallery, as well as the Mark Wooley Gallery, have been asked to vacate in order to make way for investors that have agreed to contract the space on the top floor of Pioneer Place Mall.

“This was always the agreement”, is the comment from arts curator, Chris Haberman. The gallery had originally moved into a vacated toy store, a number of years ago, and provided mall traffic, interest and cultural tourism in exchange for being hosted by the mall and its property managers, General Growth Properties.

The gallery will be open regular hours until this weekend, when there will be a closing show Saturday, April 16th, 5-9pm, to commemorate People’s and celebrate the lives and work of its artists. Expect a LOT of artwork, as all of the pieces from OneDer will be consolidated back into the original People’s gallery space. This will be your chance to pick up a piece or two from artists you may have seen and admired at the Gallery- including EMEK, Gary Houston, Mona Superhero, Chris Haberman himself.. And of course, yours truly 🙂

Don’t miss this one-of-a-kind opportunity!

Read the Facebook info about the gallery closing and show details

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Showin’ Up Around Town


I currently have about eight pieces up at the People of People’s show. It’s somewhat of a retrospective for me, that highlights the evolution of my “style” and interests over time, especially as they relate to experimentation in fiber arts, painting and mixed media.

POP’s is the annual staff/volunteer show for People’s Art of Portland, and I have to honestly say that I work with a remarkably talented bunch of co-artists at the gallery, because every single piece in this year’s exhibit is inspiring… intriguing… amazing. I was having a hard time focusing on conversations during the opening, because I kept getting distracted by other people’s work. How cool is that?

people of peoples flyerThe show will be up until sometime around February 10th, when the gallery will turn over in preparation for the annual LOVE SHOW (Hint/Rumor: This opening, unlike our usual 3rd Sat, will be timed to coincide with Valentine’s Day Weekend- stay tuned for more details on that one!) – make sure to catch it before it’s gone, as some of the pieces I have up have never been on exhibit anywhere before- and may or may not be again!

AND ALSO, upcoming THIS THURSDAY evening at the Goodfoot on Stark St. in Portland, is the opening night for the New Brow of Portland, co-presented by Chris Haberman and Jason Brown. I will also have one piece in this show. It’s an exhibit that features current “signature” pieces from over 50 artists around the Portland/Oregon region. This is sure to be a lively and mind-expanding event. Don’t miss out!

New Brow Show 2016.jpg


Big 500 Opening This Saturday!


Come down to the People’s Art of Portland Gallery this Saturday, from 2-9pm, for the grand opening of the Big 500 show 2015! Bring a can of food for the food drive.

I will have five panels in the show. You can’t miss them as they are all super-3D, and they light up with portable color changing LED’s! I think of them as “abstract deep paintings with light”, but a standalone idea would be light boxes. If this goes over well, I might be convinced to make actual wireless light box sculptures that can stand on their own.


The show is pretty simple: 500 artists have created a multitude of panels for the show (some do up to 20 at a time!) and they are all for sale, cash/credit & carry, at $40 each. The panels are displayed salon style, so that all you see is the art- although the artist’s name is on the back of the panel. The overall effect means you have a chance to experience a whole range of works at once, and find those that really speak to you. It’s one of the biggest- and funnest- shows at People’s all year!

You can visit People’s on the 3rd floor of Pioneer Place Mall, in the West wing. Typically the other galleries- Mark Wooley, AIR and OneDer, should also be open for your gallery opening and shopping needs.

I will be volunteering as a gallery “floater” during the opening, so I hope to see you there and say hi!



Volunteering at Peoples!

I am proud to announce that I have taken on a part time volunteer position at Peoples Art of Portland Gallery!

Curated by local art rock star Chris Haberman, and co-managed by Jason Brown of Po’ Boy Art, the gallery is located on the top floor of the Pioneer Place Mall in downtown Portland. Since its debut, they have had many wonderful shows, with fun and lively opening nights typically on the third Saturday of the month. There are now several more galleries open next door, including the relocatedMark Wooley Gallery, putting P-town on the map for having a mall with its very own independent art scene!

The current show up at People’s is an EMEK one-man rock n’ roll poster & graphics exhibit, complete with special viewing rooms for some of the more unusual items. This exhibit will change over in October to a new seasonally themed show, so make sure to catch a view of EMEK before he goes away.

You can see the upcoming events schedule for People’s Art on the gallery website, here, or on the Facebook page, here.

I hope to have some work up in the gallery in at least some of the upcoming October-December shows, and to have some additional small pieces on sale in the “merchandise” area.

I will tenatively be at the gallery on a few Thursday afternoons per month, and some Saturdays-definitely plan to attend opening nights where I can. Come by and say hello- and help spread the word about supporting local Portland art!

Guess Who’s In the Big 500 Show?

Big 500 Poster

…That’s right- This gal!

This year’s show, held at the Pioneer Place Mall in the heart of downtown Portland, will be bigger than ever- over 500 artists with scadillions of works available, created exclusively for this event. If you’ve never been to a “Big 100 (now 500)” show, it is truly a sight to behold. All works will be for sale at $40 each. It’s an invitation only show, and I am honored to be able to participate alongside a great cross section of works that include some of Portland’s already well known and loved artists, as well as local creativity enthusiasts from all walks of life. The pieces are shown without any notations, other than identifying names on the back of the work- so you can browse the collection exclusively on each piece’s own appeal and merits.

I will have 5 panels up- I won’t spoil the surprise yet, but I am thinking they will be based on circular/mandala themes I have going for another painting in the works… Come say hello at the opening on December 13th and I just might point them out for you…


A Clarification

It was recently brought to my attention that my emphasis on the controversy related to Place Gallery’s closure, earlier this year, may have implied bias or partisanship on my part.

So, I am here clarifying that I support all of the gallery efforts at Pioneer Place Mall, and generally, most all of the art activities offered in Portland. I don’t typically get into politics about whose approach or style or efforts are better or worse, who was right or wrong, whose drama was about who said what to whom, etc. If you want to know more about my personal biases and views (yes I do have some, as do all of us), contact me! Maybe we can get to know one another better, and we can each learn something and share something.

We have a beautiful, supportive, inclusive, diverse, and vibrant creative scene here that has grown and sustained itself really successfully over time. It is a special thing that has thus far outlasted outside attempts at categorization, exploitation, or explanation. Having come from a background of the “formal art” world (academic instruction, conservative gallery representation or juried art competitions = the only route to success, having to “make it” in NYC or LA before people take you seriously as a “real” artist, etc.), I have been amazed and delighted to be a part of the progressive art scene of Portland. There is room enough here for everyone’s viewpoint, room enough for even controversy to fuel productive thinking, debate, discussion and problem solving towards furthering our collective goals. It is truly like no other place, and I support efforts to keep it that way. It works best when we all work together to keep it going.