August is American Artist Appreciation Month. Some may celebrate it by focusing on the classics, such as Norman Rockwell, Georgia O’Keeffe, and Andy Warhol. Others may take it as an opportunity to teach their children about art and artists, and others may take advantage of museums in their area to appreciate wide ranges of art or learn more about the history of art in America. At Overcup Press, we’d like to especially appreciate American artists featured in The Tall Trees of Portland, who help make Portland such a unique, colorful, and beautiful city.
Josh Keyes, mural at SE Morrison - Source
Have you ever seen this rhino mural on SE Morrison? This was done by local artist Josh Keyes during 2015’s Forest for the Trees Festival. Josh’s work often features animals in urban areas, and brings to mind the issue of urban sprawl and humans’ effect on nature, as shown in this mural and another painting below.
Josh Keyes, "Stampede" - Source
Another mural you may have seen around SE Portland is this one:
David Rice & Blaine Fontana, mural at SE 11th Ave - Source
This mural was also created for the 2015 Forest For the Trees as a dual project between Portland artists David Rice and Blaine Fontana. Blaine’s work, as you can see below, is full of symbols and PNW imagery, while David’s tend to feature geometric shapes and realistic animals.
Blaine Fontana, mural at 21st & Alberta - Source
David Rice, "Corrected Course" - Source
But there are many other Portland artists who work in mediums other than painting and murals, such as AJ Fosik’s vivid wood sculptures, Cole Gerst’s dynamic designs, Maryanna Hoggatt’s adorable illustrations, Ren Sakurai’s amazingly detailed tattoos, and even Sam Huff’s leather goods; all pictured below.
AJ Fosik, "The Abyss Stares Back" - Source
Cole Gerst, "We Buy Junk" - Source
Maryanna Hoggatt, "Hearts + Stars" - Source
Ren Sakurai - Source
Sam Huff of Tanner Goods - Source
Many of these artists’ galleries and shops can be found throughout Portland, so this American Artist Appreciation Month, shop local; places like Hellion Gallery, Crafty Wonderland, and Antler Gallery are a great place to start! Also, look here for information on this year’s Forest For the Trees Festival, which will be held August 23rd-29th and feature, among others, Portland artists Blaine Fontana, Souther Salazar, and Martin Ontiveros.
The Tall Trees of Portland features over 40 artists based in Portland, and also includes their personal recommendations for places to eat, shop, and drink in the city.