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GLEAN Artist-in-Residence explores trash as art in symbolic exhibit at North View Gallery
Photos and Story by Celina Baguiao
The Sylvania Campus North View Gallery will present a series of artwork created from discarded material curated by artist Brenda Mallory in her exhibition “A Further Gleaning.”
Mallory’s artwork comes as a result from her 2015 GLEAN Artist-in-Residence, an arts and environmental education program started in 2011 that addresses the area’s excessive waste generation by harnessing available artistic energy to prompt people to think about their consumption habits, inspire creative reuse and initiate larger conversations about the waste we generate. GLEAN is a collaboration between Metro and Recology, an employee-owned company that manages resource recovery facilities, and Cracked Pots, an environmental arts organization.
“Historically Brenda has always been engaged with repurposing materials,” said North View Gallery Director Mark Smith. “She is always finding something and reusing it and turning it into art and providing a positive outlook on finding new life for things people have discarded.”
The residency allows five selected artists access, for five months, to glean the array of discarded materials and junk in the massive Metro Central Transfer Station in Northwest Portland.
“Her work will get people to think about potential reuse for discarded items and the impact that our ‘trash’ has on our culture,” Smith noted. “It gets you thinking about former lives that materials have had and how they are transformed. There is a shock when you see something familiar in her artwork but you aren’t quite sure what it is. Suddenly, there is a recognition, ‘That’s a firehose!’”
Mallory is a veteran in the Pacific Northwest art scene since 2002. Her work ranges from individual wall hangings and sculptures to large-scale installations. Mallory works with mixed media and organic materials, creating multiple forms that are joined with crude hardware or mechanical devices in ways that imply tenuous connections and aberrations.
The exhibition “A Further Gleaning” runs through Saturday, March 19.
An artist reception will take place 2-5 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 27.
The North View Gallery is open 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, and noon to 4 p.m., on Saturday.