When it seems like the rain is never (ever) going to stop, don’t despair! Multnomah County has a lot of hidden art to see that will get you out of the house and won’t cost you anything.
The area’s colleges and universities are a treasure trove of free art galleries! Here are links to some all over town:
- Portland State University's five galleries.
- Portland Community College’s Cascade Gallery, Helzer Art Gallery (Rock Creek campus), and North View Gallery (Sylvania campus).
- Lewis & Clark College’s Ronna and Eric Hoffman Gallery of Contemporary Art.
- the Oregon College of Art and Craft.
- the Philip Feldman Gallery at Pacific Northwest College of Art.
- Reed College’s Douglas F. Cooley Memorial Art Gallery.
- the BC Gallery at the University of Portland.
Government buildings are a great place to see rotating exhibits, usually by local artists. Experience interactive and experimental media installations in the Portland Building Installation Space; visit the art gallery in the Gresham City Council Chamber Foyer; and check out the current exhibition at Central Library’s Collins Gallery.
The Regional Arts & Culture Council has a searchable database of public art around the county. (Tip: Click on Advanced Options to search by Collection and Discipline.)
View work by local photographers at Blue Sky Gallery, originally founded as the Oregon Center for the Photographic Arts.
Learn more about contemporary art in the Portland Institute for Contemporary Art’s Resource Room. It is both an archive and library, housing over 3,500 artist publications, magazines, and audio and video recordings, as well as a video archive of performances and lectures presented by PICA over the span of the organization's history.
Coming soon: Rainy Days, Part 2: Free Museums!