Snap Snap!

Posted in Uncategorized on September 29, 2011 by ocacadmissions

It’s back to the grindstone this fall at OCAC— literally! My task last Friday was refinishing the kiln shelves down in ceramics; nothing like good hard labor to make you feel like you’re really working in the field, I say. I’m also super pumped about my plaster mold-making class; I’ve already cast two different forms for pillows, a funnel, and five light bulbs. Can’t wait to start producing!
Things are bound to take on a new look here at our school on the hill, so keep your eyes peeled and your crafty hands busy because you’re bound to find yourself on an art adventure! Cheers.

3rd Semester Post-Bacc in Ceramics, Crafty Camp Counselor, and Multiple Mold Maker


Summer on the Hill

Posted in Uncategorized on July 7, 2011 by ocacadmissions

I will take advantage of this first cloudy day in a few weeks to jot down some of my thoughts about the summer environment here at OCAC.  I use the term summer loosely here, as I am on campus this summer just as much, if not more, than during the school year…so can I really call it summer break?

Well, the weather has been absolutely splendid…so much so that I almost welcome this cool, cloudy, gray day.  Daniel (another faithful blogger here) has moved on to greener pastures.  He no longer puts in a few hours a week here in the admissions office, as he has his hands full of Art Adventurers.  Art Adventurers, you ask?  Well, Art Adventures is a summer camp/workshop that the school hosts during these few sunny months to expose kids (ages 5+) to cool art and craft ideas and projects.  Personally, I was a little uneasy with all of these youngins running around campus…as it seriously changes the feel on the hill.  But, after working a week at camp as an art assistant, I now love seeing firsthand these kids explore their creativity and push their limits.  And what better environment could they ask for?!?  I just wish that I had such a welcome and creative place to explore my passions when I was that age in Louisiana.

There are also great opportunities during the summer (and all year long, actually) for adults wishing to explore their creative juices.  The Studio School program here hosts workshops and classes (some all day, some in the evenings, some on the weekends) for adults of all ages as well!  I will be taking my first studio school class in a couple of weeks and I am so jazzed about it already!  What class am I taking? Well, it is an exploration of pate de verre techniques.  What is pate de verre?  It is the process of making a sort of paste out of glass, then forming it with a mold before you fire it.  I love glass as a material and am excited to explore ways to incorporate this new exciting material into my metalwork this coming up year!

Other than the studio school classes, the near-empty studios are almost eerie.  It is a cool opportunity to see this beautiful campus in a very different light.  I am enjoying giving tours to perspective students during the summer, as that is when I fell in love with the campus, myself.  If you are interested in coming up and taking a look around, e-mail me to set up a tour.

Anyway, that’s all that’s on my mind right now.  I will post again soon with more thoughts on summer and updates on my studio school class!


*Adrian R. P. B.

Sunny Dreamer, Material Explorer

We’re Coming Out!

Posted in Uncategorized on May 17, 2011 by ocacadmissions

The year has officially come to a close, and we have the work to prove it! If you live in the Portland area, be sure to check out these outstanding shows featuring our OCAC Graduating BFA Students and OCAC/PNCA’s Joint MFA in Applied Craft and Design Graduates.

We proudly present the 2011 graduating class of the Oregon College of Art and Craft with a Bachelors of Fine Arts in Crafts degree at the Old Attic Gallery for “Last Call”

We also present the first generation of graduates from the Oregon College of Art and Craft and Pacific Northwest College of Art’s Joint Masters of Fine Arts Degree Program in Applied Craft and Design at the Galleria for “Make Way”

See you there!


Pushing the limits of art.

Posted in Morals and Art on April 20, 2011 by ocacadmissions

Today I am full of questions.

When art crosses boundaries that may conflict or challenge social restrictions, how is it different from the limitations an artist comes by when putting up work in a gallery or show? Are they different? Is it important that art push boundaries and speak about the society we live in?

I am speaking about urban art, and even more specifically SUBurban art. What about the suburbs? Very seldom have I seen street art in the suburbs, where much of the country lives today.

Yesterday, I got myself involved in a suburban art project with another friend from OCAC. A couple of us got together for a school project that was all about Guerilla Gardening, (look it up to learn more.) Guerilla gardening is the effort of planting flowers and other plants out in public spaces, that may seem void of natural sustenance. Our project was a little different. We went about taking a young tree from the forest and moving it into someone’s front yard. The task of doing this crosses many lines, but the cause behind it is a statement about the relationship to wildlife in regard to our domesticated lives. In the movie Harold and Maude, Maude takes a tree from an urban environment and moves it into a forest. Our task was in some ways the opposite, moving earth back to its formerly inhabited environment.  Before I got involved in this project, I was not aware of the moral nature and questions I would receive from doing this.  A few questions that came up are:

-Is it wrong to move a tree from its natural habitat, or any plant for that matter?

-(In response to that question…) Have we not done this very thing while we continually put up new housing and buildings all over the world?

-Both of those questions made me consider what we were actually doing: moving a tree back to an environment that it may have once thrived in.

-What is my position and role in this? Who I am to do so and is it wrong to interject and give myself that responsibility?

When I was sitting next to the tree with it in the backseat of the car, I felt confused and uncertain about the transition of life this tree was receiving.  In defense of my moral conflict, we did this with the hope that this tree has the opportunity to bring joy and new life into some other family’s personal environment, but in doing this it brought up fundamental questions. Further, this is also considered trespassing- which can have a very serious fine. We left the tree that had a name tag attached.  It said the tree type, the date, and this:

“The Giving Tree”

In all this, I reside with mixed feelings, but leave it open for the public to consider and interpret. How would you feel if you woke up with a tree planted in your front yard?

Thanks for your time,

an OCAC student

A Year at OCAC

Posted in Uncategorized on April 20, 2011 by ocacadmissions

The sun is starting to shine more on  this little hill, and the dust is starting to clear. Thesis openings are under way, and many of us stand and stare in awe at the past year’s dedication of  work produced by these well-accomplished student artists. It’s especially moving to have spent a year here at OCAC and have met and befriended many of these artists and seen their work develop, see the gears moving in their heads as they ponder their work, see them succeed, fail, succeed again, fail again, but ultimately present their greatest successes in art and craft.

More information on the Senior Thesis Exhibitions at the Hoffman Gallery can be found here.

In a lot of ways, art school can often be about the glory of the failure. It’s almost cliche to talk about learning from your mistakes, but it’s true. Without mistakes, craft would be obsolete; crafting art is about finding the best solution towards expressing an idea and manifesting an image or object. Craft is about trying new materials and techniques and exploring what’s available, what works, and what doesn’t. What’s important to realize is that nobody achieves that “best” in their first attempt. In fact, the more attempts (and therefore failures) that are made provide a richer depth of learning and experience that serve as a stronger foundation on which to construct the “best” work.

I guess that’s my soapbox for the day. We’re all a little burned out around here. You’ll just have to come to campus and check out the work that was made this year and see for yourself.

Over and out.

-Daniel, 2nd Semester Post-Baccalaureate in Ceramics and Moderately Modest Mistake-Maker

T Minus One Month…and Counting

Posted in Classes (general), Parks & Recreation, Portland City Life, Students, Summer, Weather on April 4, 2011 by ocacadmissions

Ahhhh….Spring Break was soooo nice! Although the weather was very Oregon in springtime (rainy and chilly), I very much enjoyed the opportunity to step away from school life for a week.  Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE SCHOOL…but I don’t love the stress and turmoil that can come with full time school life.  I purposefully distanced myself from my schoolwork and went camping (though I did bring my sketchbook, of course).  Many of my teachers were expecting from me a break full of homework.  Honestly, I don’t think that is much of a break.  I made the conscious decision to enjoy the break part, even if the spring part didn’t quite pan out. I was well aware that I would be/feel a bit behind the next Monday, but now that school is back in full swing, my batteries feel re-charged and my enthusiasm for my schoolwork is at a great level! I can’t wait to see what the next four weeks hold for me and my work!  However, I am very much looking forward to summer…the break and the weather!  That is by far, my favorite time of year here in the paradise-like Pacific Northwest!  And there is plenty to keep me very busy this summer, as I have applied to work at Art Adventures (summer art camp for youth here at school), and am planning to be outdoors as much as possible (hiking, climbing, camping, exploring, disc golf, etc)! Yay….I’m warm just thinking about it!!


*Adrian R. P. B., Sunny Dreamer, Hard Worker!

News news news

Posted in Uncategorized on April 4, 2011 by ocacadmissions

Following up on last week’s beauty discussion on the sublime, I also wanted to provide some other images that were presented. One of the articles was a story about the great redwoods of the pacific coast. Did you know that Northern California hosts three trees that are the largest living things on the planet? One of them is named General Sherman and weighs more than three blue whales.
The other topic of the discussion was on the photographer Andreas Gursky and the contemporary sublime. Does today’s sublime have to involve nature, untouched by human civilization? Here is one of Gursky’s photos, to give you an idea.

Of course I imagine the print dimensions in life size are of a similar magnitude to the contents of the photograph.

Another example of the contemporary sublime is the unintentional beauty of the Poplar Tree Farm on I-84 in Eastern Oregon. Somehow the mechanization of nature stirs emotions of awe in the viewer.

In other news, high profile Chinese contemporary artist and activist Ai Weiwei was arrested yesterday for suspected rallying for a “jasmine revolution.” Here’s the story I read, courtesy of the Washington Post

That’s all I can afford to say for now.

Over and out.