News Archive


GOODS is how we celebrate some of the good things members of our PNCA community are doing. This edition's highlight: the many alumni and faculty selected by Michelle Grabner for the Salon show at the Portland 2016 Biennial.

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Posted on 07/27 at 12:50 PM

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GOODS Mid-Summer Edition

Here’s another quick round-up of some of the good things members of our PNCA community are doing. Highlights include PNCA alumni and faculty in the Portland Biennial, 

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Posted on 07/07 at 03:16 PM

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GOODS | Early summer edition

Day-after-Solstice, early summer edition of GOODS wherein we round up just some of the many good things members of our PNCA community are doing out in the world. Highlights this time include community projects with our downtown neighbors, a list of alum artist-run spaces and projects, and a new partnership with Portland Community Media.

If you’ve an upcoming exhibition or residency; if you’ve received an award or been awarded a commission, please email me.

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Posted on 06/22 at 11:14 AM

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Congratulations to Scholarship Award Winners

Congratulations to all of our students who have been selected to receive Merit Scholarships. These students are selected by faculty and department chairs for their exceptional promise. 

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Posted on 06/03 at 04:17 PM

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BLIGHT Issue 05 Launches

Issue 05 of BLIGHT, an annual magazine published by PNCA's MFA in Collaborative Design program is now available. 

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Posted on 05/19 at 01:37 PM

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Rose Bond Awarded Oregon Media Arts Fellowship

Congratulations to Rose Bond, Lead Faculty in Animated Arts on her 2016 Oregon Media Arts Fellowship in support of her upcoming collaboration with the Oregon Symphony on the December 2016 performance of the Turangalîla-Symphonie by French composer Olivier Messiaen.

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Posted on 05/18 at 12:45 PM

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Students Create Transitions Projects Murals

Jack Graydon

PNCA students in Professor Linda Kliewer’s Off Site Projects class have worked with clients at Transition Projects in the Bud Clark Commons Day Center to create bright murals on some of the doors in the Day Center, across NW Broadway from PNCA.

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Posted on 05/06 at 04:22 PM

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Scholarships and Awards 2016

PNCA today announced the recipients of the array of scholarships and awards the College offers to exceptional students. Congratulations to all.

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Posted on 05/06 at 03:35 PM

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Faculty Emeriti Win SCGI Awards

Christy Wyckoff receiving SGCI Excellence in Teaching Award. photo: Deann Orr

The biggest congratulations to faculty emeriti Tom Prochaska and Christy Wyckoff who each received the SGCI Excellence in Teaching Award when the annual conference was held in Portland. 

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Posted on 05/03 at 11:05 AM

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A periodic round-up of some of the good things members of our PNCA community are doing. 

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Posted on 04/29 at 09:43 AM

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Faculty Members Receive RACC Fellowship Awards for Excellence in Visual Arts

Faculty members Ellen Lesperance and David Eckard have received 2015 Fellowship Awards from the Regional Arts and Culture Council (RACC). The award comes with a cash grant of $20,000.

RACC notes, “Ellen Lesperance creates art in various media but often employs the visual language of knitting, having once worked for Vogue Knitting as a pattern knitter. Her work is socially responsible and poignant yet inclusive – for example, she has created memorial paintings (“death shrouds”) for young women activists who have died while fighting for “causes greater than themselves.”  The RACC Fellowship will help Lesperance take a semester off from teaching to commit solely to a full-time studio practice. She will also attend two residency programs: the MacDowell Colony, and the American Academy in Rome’s Visiting Artist Program. She will also use some of the funds for materials for upcoming shows.”

In 2014 Lesperance received an Art Matters and Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant; in 2012, she was awarded a Hallie Ford Fellowship; in 2010 she received The Betty Bowen Award and was a MacDowell Colony Artist-in-Residence.

And, “David Eckard was selected for a RACC Fellowship on the strength of his personal studio work, public performances and his dedication to the arts community both at PNCA and in his activism on behalf of artists. … He will use fellowship funds (and take a sabbatical from PNCA) to research, design and begin implementing plans for a “creative compound” on his property, which will be populated with exhibitions, screenings, conferences, neighborhood events, workshops, residencies and mentoring opportunities.”

Eckard, Lead Faculty in Sculpture, was awarded the Bonnie Bronson Fellowship for 2010, was one of the inaugural recipients of the Hallie Ford Fellowship in Visual Arts for 2010, and was a Juror’s Award recipient at the 2006 Oregon Biennial.

PNCA celebrates these accomplished artists, their works and achievements, as well as their contributions to the PNCA community.

Posted on 10/06 at 11:07 AM

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PNCA Alumni Selected for Rainmaker Artist Residency

Congratulations to the PNCA alumni selected for the Rainmaker Artist Residency, a 12-month program that provides studio space and professional development to support recent MFA recipients from Oregon colleges and universities. The Residency was founded by Jane Schiffhauer, who received her MFA from PNCA.

Jonathan Gann is an interdisciplinary artist and musician living and working in Portland, Oregon. He received his BFA from the University of Alabama at Birmingham in 2012 and his MFA in Visual Studies from Pacific Northwest College of Art in 2014. Jonathan has shown internationally and is currently a lead coordinator in No Laws No Fear of Death (NLNFOD) and Take Down Your Art (TDYA).

Michael Horwitz is an artist based in Portland, Oregon. He received his BFA in Film and Television from NYU’s Tisch School for the Arts and his MFA in Visual Studies from Pacific Northwest College of Art. His work has been featured in the Time Based Arts Festival, the Portland Art Museum, the Museum of Contemporary Craft, PDX Contemporary Art, Disjecta, ‘Mo-Wave Queer Arts Festival, the Independent Print Resource Center, and The Projects PDX.

Leif J. Lee is a multi-disciplinary queer feminist artist born in the Pacific Northwest. She received BA from the Evergreen State College and her MFA from Pacific Northwest College of Art in 2014. Her studio practice includes creating hand drawn patterns in ink on fabrics that are then hand dyed for custom clothing, soft sculpture and wall hangings. Her collaborative performances have shown at multiple events including the Time Based Art festival and PICA’s Resource Room Residency.

Kaila Farrell-Smith is a Klamath/Modoc visual artist based in Portland, Oregon. Kaila Farrell-Smith received a B.F.A. from Pacific Northwest College of Art in 2004 and a MFA in Contemporary Art Practices Studio from Portland State University in 2014. She works as a mentor and art instructor for Journey’s in Creativity, a pre-college Native/Indigenous art camp via OCAC, is an adjunct professor of art at Portland Community College, and the Development Coordinator for the artist residency program, Signal Fire.

Posted on 10/05 at 09:55 AM

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Oregon Art Education Association Honors Alumni

Congratulations are in order for two distinguished alumni. Margaret Synan-Russell ‘89 and Arvie Smith ‘85 will receive professional awards from the Oregon Art Education Association. Synan-Russell has been selected as the 2015 Oregon Primary Art Educator of the the Year and Smith is receiving a Distinguished Service award.

Synan-Russell is Chair of the Visual and Performing Arts at Oregon Episcopal School and Smith is Professor Emeritus at PNCA.

The awardees were nominated by their colleagues, and their nomination materials were rated through a process of blind adjudication according to specific rubrics from the National Art Education Association. The Oregon Art Education Association will honor Synan-Russell, Smith, and five other art educators at an awards breakfast on Saturday, October 10 at Southern Oregon University in Ashland, as part of its annual two-day professional conference.

Posted on 09/22 at 09:50 AM

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Lou Watson ‘15 Betty Bowen Finalist

Lou Watson, who received her BFA in 2015 in Media Arts with a concentration in Intermedia is one of five finalists for the Betty Bowen Award. Administered by the Seattle Art Museum, the annual Betty Bowen Award honors a Northwest artist for their original, exceptional, and compelling work. The winner is awarded an unrestricted cash prize of $15,000, and a selection of his or her works is shown at the Seattle Art Museum in the fall of 2015. Watson recently took her thesis project, an experimental concert the subject of which was NE Sandy Boulevard to the Hollywood Theatre on Sandy, and Esme Hogeveen MA ‘15 wrote about it for UNTITLED.

Posted on 09/03 at 03:52 PM

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Alum Molly Mendoza Tapped for $5000 Rockstar Games Award

PNCA alumna Molly Mendoza‘s image “My Line Our Vibe!” has been awarded the $5000 Rockstar Games Award. Mendoza was one of three PNCA students whose work was selected for the 2015 Society of Illustrators Student Scholarship Competition in New York. The others were Alyssa Van Hulle and Cate Andrews. Mendoza also had work selected for the 2014 Society of Illustrators Student Scholarship Competition.

Mendoza completed her studies in the fall of 2014. She was a Lemelson Scholar, recipient of a prestigious scholarship. She has already created work for Adobe, Nautilus, and the NYTimes, and has had her work highlighted by the influential blog The Fox is Black.

This is the second time in three years a PNCA Illustration student has received one of the select awards; Samantha Mash received it in 2012-13.

Read this longer story from 2014 about Mendoza on UNTITLED.

Posted on 05/05 at 10:29 AM

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PNCA Students in Society of Illustrators Student Scholarship Competition

Molly Mendoza,

Works by three PNCA students were selected for the 2015 Society of Illustrators Student Scholarship Competition in New York.

Molly Mendoza’s works “Saturn” and “My Line Our Vibe”  (ink and digital color), Alyssa Van Hulle’s “Sami School” (ink and digital color) and Cate Andrews’ “Cover Redesign for ‘Gathering Blue’” (ink and digital manipulation).

Every year since 1981 the Society has held the Student Scholarship Competition. Approximately three hundred works are chosen from more than 9,000 entries submitted by illustration professors nationwide. A jury of professional peers, including illustrators and art directors, selects the most outstanding works created throughout the year. Pieces are accepted based on the quality of technique, concept, and skill of medium used. From the Society’s endowment, and through generous contributions from private and corporate donors, scholarship awards are granted to about 25 students. In the last 30 years, the Society has awarded over $1,500,000 to deserving students in this unique competition.

Scholarship awards will be announced in the coming weeks, with the opening reception taking place at the Gallery of American Illustration in NYC in May. The show will be on display through the beginning of June.

Posted on 03/11 at 03:14 PM

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Alum Criss Moss new Director of U of O White Box Gallery

PNCA alumnus Cris Moss ‘99 has been appointed Director of White Box gallery programs at the Portland location of the School of Architecture and Allied Arts at University of Oregon. Associate Dean and Director of the School of Architecture and Allied Arts, Kate Wagle, says, “We look forward to seeing his experience, leadership and vision build on the established reputation of White Box as a laboratory for speculation and experiment in art, architecture and design. With his direction,White Box will continue to evolve and grow as a premier Northwest art venue, and as an important research and outreach location for the University of Oregon and the School of Architecture and Allied Arts.”

Cris Moss received an MFA from New York University in 2003 and has been curating “with an entrepreneurial spirit” since 2000, including creation of the Donut Shop, a rotating gallery space that defined the leading edge of a Portland DIY gallery movement, and curating the multi-venue Portland 2010 Biennial (for which White Box was one site).

For the last ten years Cris has served as director and curator of the Linfield College Gallery, where he presented exhibitions of work by Daniel Heyman, Waffa Bilal, Suzanne Opton, and Peter Campus among others. At Linfield Moss taught courses ranging from studio foundations, to digital video and photography, gallery management and curatorial practice. Other teaching and review experience includes Clark College, Maine College of Art, and Pacific Northwest College of Art. He has consulted and worked with the National Alliance for Media Arts and Culture, Oregon Arts Commission, The Ford Family Foundation and Regional Arts and Culture Council among many others.

Posted on 01/27 at 02:46 PM

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Classes Start Feb 2 at New Campus

Classes start Monday, February 2, 2015 in the newly renovated Arlene and Harold Schnitzer Center for Art and Design. The culmination of eight years of behind the scenes work and a $15 million capital campaign, construction on the renovation of the historic Federal Building with a contemporary design by Brad Cloepfil of Allied Works Architecture took just a little over a year.

While students have been on Winter break, construction has continued at a brisk pace. These photos of the building from December 30 show how the new design brings so much light into the building—by opening the tops of the ground floor arched windows, uncovering expansive skylights, and installing a ceiling of glass in the new atrium with its new cable-hung mezzanine. 

Students will walk hundred-year-old marble-lined halls on the way to classes in double-height painting and drawing studios, wired classrooms with internet speeds ten times faster than the current campus, new recording booths, animation labs, and green screen studios. They’ll attend visiting artist lectures in the Mediatheque black box theater, gather in the new Albert Solheim Library, the second-floor New Commons under original sawtooth skylights, and in the 2.5 story Atrium with its Grand Cru cafe. Students will be able to show work in a number of project spaces, galleries, and critique spaces throughout the building.

PNCA’s new North Park Blocks Campus includes the Arlene and Harold Schnitzer Center for Art and Design, at 511 NW Broadway, Museum of Contemporary Craft at 724 NW Davis Street, and ArtHouse student housing at 33 NW Park.

And PNCA will welcome the greater Portland community to our new home on March 5, 2015 for our first First Thursday celebration in the new building, opening a new exhibition, Justseeds, in our new 511 Gallery.

Posted on 01/12 at 03:49 PM

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Illuminating Zena Zezza’s past

Laura Heit, faculty member, was commissioned to create work illuminating Zena Zezza’s history in The Hallock and McMillan building residing in Old Town. Heit’s main focal point was the Great Flood that hit Portland. Entitled, 1857 Project , in partnernship with the Oregon Historical Society, is currently showing at Zena Zezza and is composed of an animation of cool toned rains being projected onto a photograph of the flood, which shows Portlanders gliding through the streets in boats. Another work by Heit is made of fir floorboards from the building, which creates a ramp that participants can walk up and experience more imagery of past Portlanders enduring the circumstances caused by the flood in almost the same type of ramp structures.

View more photos of this exhibition taken by Mario Gallucci (MFA VS ’14) here.

Posted on 12/22 at 02:38 PM

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Lesperance receives Art Matters Foundation grant

Ellen Lesperance, faculty member, has received a grant from the Art Matters Foundation. This grant will be funding Lesperance’s research at the Greenham Commons Women’s Peace Camp archives in London. Lesperance explains her work and what she will be doing with the grant funding on the Art Matters Foundation website: “I create paintings and textiles based off of archival images of female activists. This grant will support research and new work about the anti-nuke protest site, Greenham Commons, whose partial archive exists at the Women’s Library at the British Library of Political and Economic Science in London.” Lesperance has exhibited in venues across the nation including The Seattle Art Museum and The Brooklyn Museum along with her work appearing in multiple publications such as The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, and Art Monthly.


Posted on 12/19 at 02:41 PM

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