Art on the streets

March 9, 2010

Despite Portland’s reputation for attracting artists, I’ve yet to encounter an abundance of street art depicting this level of flair and creativity. Maybe I don’t get around enough, but I mostly encounter incomprehensible graffiti. Much is gang messaging, a defacement uglier and longer lasting than cats peeing to mark their territory.

Some people are trying, judging from these photos. My own finds are here, including some on passing rail cars. An artist known as Cake, whose work has been featured in an Albany, New York gallery, apparently stopped in Portland and left behind two paintings.

I’m a big fan of my friend’s approach — temporary, portable, and free. In a story I wrote before we became friends, he said:

I’m letting go of dormant energy in my world and leaving it to other people to revive it if they want.