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State of Wonder: Dec. 20 2014

The year in PDX hip hop, cellist Nancy Ives on composing, Justin Simien's runaway hit film "Dear White People," and more.

Photo: Alan Sylvestre / OPB

State of Wonder: Dec. 13 2014

Wild's film premier, tough guys in the movies, tough girls on vinyl, Mic Crenshaw in Africa, and more!

Music | NW Life

The Best Portland Hip-Hop Of 2014

OPB | Dec. 19, 2014 9:16 a.m.

We sit down with Mac Smiff of We Out Here Magazine to hear about the top hip-hop artists that came out of Portland in 2014.

IPR Hip Hop Report: Lack Of Documentation

OPB | Dec. 17, 2014 midnight

Portland's Independent Police Review finds no evidence of biased enforcement at hip hop shows, but calls out gaps in the regulators' documentation.

Arts | Books | Entertainment | Local | News

Cheryl Strayed On 'Wild'

OPB | Dec. 08, 2014 2:46 p.m.

The latest major feature film shot in Oregon premiered in Portland Monday night. "Wild" is the film adaptation of Portland writer Cheryl Strayed's  2012 memoir.

Mic Crenshaw's Afrikan Hip Hop Caravan

OPB | Dec. 11, 2014 2:30 p.m.

The Portland MC engages hip hop artists from four African countries for conversation and shows during a month-long trip.


Sallie Ford at OPB

opbmusic | Dec. 12, 2014 12:06 p.m.

Watch Sallie Ford's new band play a rocking set from their release, Slap Back.

Photographer Richard Mosse Portrays Conflict In Surreal Light

OPB | Dec. 03, 2014 3:10 p.m.

"The Enclave" looks at the lives of those affected by violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

FIRST LISTEN: Portland Cello Project's Homage To Elliott Smith

OPB | Nov. 26, 2014 4:38 p.m.

The eclectic chamber group plays some Smith covers, and commissions original music based on fragments of Smith's songs.

Author Tom Spanbauer On Real Life With HIV

OPB | AIRDATE: Dec. 01, 2014 12:30 p.m.

Tom Spanbauer has written fiction about people who live with HIV, but he joins us today to talk about how he's dealt with the disease himself since 1988.


The Archive Project - Dec. 3, 2014

OPB | AIRDATE: Dec. 02, 2014 11:25 a.m.

Episode 8 of Literary Arts: The Archive Project features a talk by the late Saul Bellow. Bellow examines boyhood, nostalgia, the importance of the arts, and the “privileged communication” of the novel.


Broken Bells at the Schnitz

opbmusic | Nov. 07, 2014 2:56 p.m.

James Mercer, Dangermouse, and the band perform in Portland after in interview with Sound Opinions.

John Waters: 'I've Made Bad Taste A Little More Respectable'

OPB | Nov. 25, 2014 2:29 p.m.

Filmmaker John Waters is coming to Portland to perform his Christmas show. We'll talk to him about the holidays, and hear about his legacy as he approaches 70.

Calligraphy Project Rewrites The Script

OPB | Nov. 26, 2014 4:09 p.m.

A Reed College project aims to return calligraphy to a place in everyday practice.

Slim Moon's Leap Of Faith

OPB | Nov. 18, 2014 11:12 a.m.

The founder of Kill Rock Stars Records moves into Unitarian ministry.


Horse Feathers at OPB

opbmusic | Nov. 21, 2014 3:45 p.m.

The Portland band plays songs from their new release, So It Is With Us.

Books | Local

Ursula Le Guin Takes On Publishing Industry At National Book Awards

OPB | Nov. 20, 2014 9:53 a.m.

Oregon writer Ursula K. Le Guin delivered a sharp critique of the publishing industry Nov. 19 at the National Book Awards.

David Ackerman

KMHD | Oct. 14, 2014 9:51 a.m.

David Ackerman, the jazz program director for Cornell University in the 1960s, recorded a historic Charles Mingus concert at the University. He held onto the tapes and was directed by Charles Mingus by telegram.

Arts | Local

Cold Snap Inspires Hat Designer To Join Portland Artists In Outpouring Of Warmth

OPB | Nov. 20, 2014 midnight

Local hat designer Faith Jennings has found a new use for her business’s leftover materials. She recently created bedrolls for members of Portland’s homeless community in response to a tarp-and-blanket drive.

Portland Opera's Paradigm Shift

OPB | Nov. 14, 2014 9:52 a.m.

Singers and orchestra musicians drink in the news, while company plans for seven-show runs at Newmark.

Tradition And Innovation On Display At Native(X)

OPB | Nov. 13, 2014 2:20 p.m.

Earlier this month, prominent Native American artists from around the country gathered at Union/Pine — a gallery in southeast Portland. They were here for a gallery showing of contemporary design curated by Native X.


Stagepass: Laura Gibson

opbmusic | Oct. 21, 2014 1:09 p.m.

Laura Gibson plays a final concert in Portland before leaving for graduate school in New York.

"Lowriders In Space" Is A Unique Graphic Novel For Kids

OPB | AIRDATE: Nov. 04, 2014 12:35 p.m.

"Lowriders In Space" follows the interstellar adventures of mechanic Lupe Impala and her sidekicks El Chavo Flapjack Octopus and Elirio Malaria.


Cuba Libre, Part 1

OPB | AIRDATE: Nov. 13, 2014 1 a.m.

Take a look as Damaso Rodriguez and Co. at Artist sRepertory Theatre begin work on a long-term original project, Cuba Libre.

Searching For The Sound Of Celilo Falls

OPB | AIRDATE: Nov. 12, 2014 12:50 p.m.

A new project tries to capture the sound of the iconic Celilo Falls.

Local | Music

So Amped: Using Broken Equipment To Make Music History

OPB | Nov. 12, 2014 midnight

Though the vacuum tube amplifier was originally invented in the 1920s as a way to transmit Morse code, it didn’t take long for guitar players to realize it could be used to amplify their instruments as well. Find out how the amp changed music history.

Decemberists' Conlee On Cancer: 'Things Are Better ... Kind Of'

OPB | Nov. 07, 2014 1:41 p.m.

Jenny Conlee, the accordionist, pianist and keyboard player for the Decemberists and Black Prairie, talks about her experience going through treatment and coming out the other side.


Portland Opera Marks Its 50th Birthday

OPB | Nov. 06, 2014 midnight

The Portland Opera marks its 50th season with a production of Johann Strauss’ Die Fledermaus. General Director Christopher Mattaliano hopes to foster new audiences by encouraging the Opera to think outside the box.

Vin Shambry Remembers Ben Buckley

OPB | Nov. 06, 2014 3:03 p.m.

"Every single time he came onstage, he had this way of embodying an emotion that was so magnetic."

Arts | Local

Eighth Annual Siren Nation Festival Showcases Local Female Artists

OPB | Nov. 07, 2014 midnight

The Siren Nation Festival, now in its eighth year, features art shows, music and theater performances, and more. Find out about the festival's goals and why some of the artists participate year after year.

The Enduring Popularity Of Retro Gaming

OPB | Oct. 24, 2014 10:26 a.m.

Last weekend's Portland Retro Gaming Expo showcased Pac-Man and Donkey Kong, of course. But it also featured new "homebrewed" games for decades-old systems.

Former R.E.M. Guitarist Peter Buck's Solo Flights

OPB | Oct. 23, 2014 3:40 p.m.

With platinum-selling R.E.M. records in the rear-view mirror and some gloriously weird vinyl records out on the Mississippi Records imprint, Buck talks about his evolving sound.

Sleater-Kinney Remastered

OPB | Oct. 21, 2014 10:39 a.m.

The remastered boxset. It’s a rite of passage for nearly every great band.  But what exactly is remastering?

Passages: Paul Revere Dick, Linda Hornbuckle

OPB | Oct. 11, 2014 7:51 a.m.

We remember a Portland blues master and a '60s pop icon.

Oregon Arts Commission Hosts Summit In Central Oregon

OPB | Oct. 10, 2014 2 p.m.

The Commission has made an effort to focus on different communities throughout the state, starting this week with a regional arts summit in Bend.

PAM's Guenther Retires, Search For New Curator Imminent

OPB | Oct. 09, 2014 3:53 p.m.

Guenther's 14-year tenure ushered in new age of Modernism for the Portland Art Museum.


Portland Art Museum: Blue Sky: The Center for the Photographic Arts at 40

Sept. 09, 2014 1:32 p.m.

Major survey exhibition of more than 120 works by artists shown at Blue Sky that demonstrates the role the gallery played in establishing photography as a fine art.

Bend Film Festival Expands To Warm Springs Reservation

OPB | Oct. 09, 2014 3:56 p.m.

The Bend Film Festival is taking place this weekend. The festival has a new executive director at the helm. And for the first time, festival goers will be able to see films on the Warm Springs reservation, including one by a 23 year old tribal member.

Catching Up With Editorial Cartoonist Jack Ohman

OPB | AIRDATE: Sept. 29, 2014 12:45 p.m.

The Oregonian's former editorial cartoonist is now lambasting politicians in California, at the Sacramento Bee.

David Mitchell's Love Of "Beautiful, Shimmering Words"

OPB | Oct. 03, 2014 9:48 a.m.

An extended conversation with David Mitchell, who sat down with us to discuss his new work, his writing influences, parenting a child who has autism, growing up with a stammer, and the spiritual themes that inform his work.

Arts | News

At The Heart Of Washington D.C.'s Newest National Monument Is Oregon Glass

OPB | Oct. 03, 2014 6 a.m.

On Sunday, the American Veterans Disabled for Life Memorial will be dedicated — with the president on hand. The monument features an installation of intricate glass walls made in Oregon. Here's a look inside the Portland studio where the mammoth production unfolded for nearly three years.

Worksound Back Online With "Furniture Porn"

OPB | Oct. 03, 2014 10:34 a.m.

Mark Takiguchi's paintings riffing on glossy home decor catalogs mark the vanguard gallery's revival.

Writers On Design: What Works In Your Town

OPB | Oct. 02, 2014 3:57 p.m.

Three writers talk about design that works in Oregon cities,  and the interplay between urban design and public dialogue.


Review: Project Pabst 2014

opbmusic | Sept. 30, 2014 11:50 a.m.

The new festival played Portland's south waterfront for the first time last weekend.

Darrell Grant's MJ New Onstage This Weekend

OPB | Oct. 02, 2014 5:30 p.m.

Portland and Newport shows re-interpreting the classy, timeless music of the Modern Jazz Quartet.


EDJ instudio at OPB

opbmusic | Sept. 23, 2014 4:13 p.m.

Former Fruit Bats' frontman Eric D. Johnson joins us to play from his new release, EDJ.

Anatomy Of A Fight Scene: Wait Until Dark

OPB | Sept. 25, 2014 midnight

Northwest Classical Theatre is staging a production of a play featuring a blind woman, trapped in her apartment with an assailant. The actors talk about how they staged it.

Hari Kondabolu: Stand-Up and Standing Out

OPB | Sept. 26, 2014 11:26 a.m.

NYC native who launched his career in Seattle flips consciousness about race and class into spot-on observational comedy. 

Reimaginging Shakespeare Through Juliet's Nurse

OPB | Sept. 23, 2014 9:52 a.m.

Portland author Lois Leveen's novel revisits time-honored characters with fresh perspective on gender, class, and loss.


The Donkeys at OPB

opbmusic | Sept. 16, 2014 5:10 p.m.

The San Diego quartet plays summertime jams from their new record, Ride the Black Wave.

Arts | Books | Local | News

Literary Arts Takes Control Of Wordstock Book Festival

OPB | Sept. 19, 2014 5:47 p.m.

The Wordstock book festival will reboot as a one-day event at the Portland Art Museum, and Powell's Books is back on board.

What Ancient Ruins Tell Us About Our Brains And Art

OPB | Sept. 19, 2014 12:11 p.m.

Francisco Fernandez de Miguel is using pre-Columbian art to study the neuroscience of how we perceive art.

Arts | News

Portland Art Museum's Chief Curator To Retire

OPB | Sept. 15, 2014 4:24 p.m.

After 14 years directing exhibitions and acquisitions for the state's largest art museum, Bruce Guenther says he'll step down in October.

Do The Right Thing Revisited

OPB | Sept. 20, 2014 2 a.m.

A whole generation after its premiere, we take a second look at Spike Lee's funny, vibrant, sometimes frightening exploration of racial tension in one corner of '80s Brooklyn.

Dreamscape: Giving Racial Tensions Form On Stage

OPB | Sept. 19, 2014 10:03 a.m.

Rickerby Hinds's Dreamscape dramatizes the events of December 28, 1998, when police shot and killed a nineteen year old black woman in Riverside, California.

Teaching Artists How To Write

OPB | Sept. 19, 2014 11:46 a.m.

Monica Drake is spearheading a Bachelors of Fine Arts in writing at Pacific Northwest College of Art.

Pop-Art Partners: Mike and Laura Allred

OPB | Sept. 12, 2014 3:19 p.m.

Mike and Laura Allred talk about their eye-popping, classic style, and also tell us the story of how they met.

Michael Oeming And Taki Soma's Collaborative Comics

OPB | Sept. 12, 2014 3:36 p.m.

Michael Oeming and Taki Soma are a husband-wife duo that have worked as a team on several comics projects.

Mike Doughty On Coloring Outside Industry Lines

OPB | Sept. 12, 2014 4:57 p.m.

Indie rocker, author, and seeker Mike Doughty talks about blowing up his career in the traditional industry, and remaking his creative output.

Jen Van Meter On Dr. Mirage, Women In Comics, And Hopeless Savages

OPB | Sept. 12, 2014 4:20 p.m.

We talk to Jen Van Meter about her indie and mainstream comics work, including, most recently, The Death-Defying Dr. Mirage.

TBA Performers Past And Present Preview This Year's Festival

OPB | Sept. 05, 2014 3:04 p.m.

We check in with Dropping Gems record label, choreographer Tahni Holt, curator Stephanie Snyder, and performance artist Chanticleer Trü about their plans for the 2014 Time Based Art Festival.

Sub Pop To Release Sleater-Kinney Box Set

OPB | Aug. 28, 2014 2:54 p.m.

The legendary post-punk trio will drop a collection of the entire S-K discography, remastered.

Hanging Out With Designer Aaron Draplin

OPB | Sept. 04, 2014 3:44 p.m.

Draplin's at the Portland Art Museum. We talk about favorite things and universal design principles.

Meet State of Wonder's Cellist-In-Residence Nancy Ives

OPB | Sept. 05, 2014 2:50 p.m.

Why? Because we've always wanted our own cellist. Especially one with such a frisky nose for new music.

James Lavadour Featured At Crystal Bridges Museum Of American Art

OPB | Sept. 05, 2014 2:37 p.m.

The museum's State of the Art exhibit focuses on over 100 cutting-edge contemporary American artists.

Discogs and Crate Diggers: Match Made in Vinyl Heaven

OPB | Aug. 27, 2014 11:46 p.m.

The online record database holds its first-ever record show.

Fond Farewell: Dolorean Posts Final Show

OPB | Aug. 27, 2014 11:15 p.m.

Critic Ned Lannaman and Dolorean's Al James talk about the end of an era.

Opera Exploring Veterans' Journey To Premiere

OPB | Aug. 28, 2014 12:19 a.m.

Composer and U of O grad Ethan Gans-Morse teams up with Tiziana DellaRovere for Canticle of the Black Madonna.

Monica Drake Reads A Bedtime Story For Adults

OPB | Aug. 29, 2014 12:33 p.m.

The Bedtime Stories for Adults series is hosted by some of Portland's literary heavyweights. They truly mean it when they say bedtime stories — audience and hosts all dress up in silk robes and PJs. And they truly mean it when they say it’s for adults.

Arts | Music

One Song: Liz Vice - 'Empty Me Out'

OPB | Aug. 28, 2014 8:45 a.m.

Last year, Liz Vice sang lead vocals on a gospel album that has generated quite a stir in the Portland music scene. Watch her perform "Empty Me Out" from the Bungalo 9 recording studio in Southeast Portland.

Pink Martini Percussionist Derek Rieth Dies At 43

OPB | Aug. 22, 2014 4:28 p.m.

Rieth played for years with Pink Martini. He harbored a passion for Afro-Cuban and Brazilian rhythms.

Springfield Welcomes New Simpsons Mural

OPB | Aug. 21, 2014 4:12 p.m.

The mural is being spearheaded by an Oregon native and University of Oregon alum.

Arts | Books

Mitchell S. Jackson's Novel Focuses On Residue Years In Portland

OPB | AIRDATE: Sept. 12, 2013 12:30 p.m.

Mitchell Jackson's semi-autobiographical debut novel recalls a northeast Portland damaged by drugs and the drug war.


Stagepass: Black Prairie

opbmusic | July 29, 2014 10:45 a.m.

Watch the band's strong performance and beautifully captured video from Stagepass.

Slideshow: ArtsEast Showcases Eastern Oregon Artwork

OPB | Aug. 22, 2014 1:34 p.m.

We caught up with four of the honored artists highlighted at the ArtsEast Biennial 2014.

Physics Lessons From The Science Teacher You Wish You'd Had

OPB | AIRDATE: Aug. 19, 2014 12:30 p.m.

Portland-based mechanical engineer, musician, and author Christine McKinley brings us the laws of physics like you've never heard them before.

Playing Around With Elbowfish

OPB | Aug. 23, 2014 12:23 p.m.

Father-daughter developers David and Leana Galiel talk about putting gaming to work. They have a beautifully illustrated new card game called JUX in the works.

Arts | Music | News

Mural Unveiled Remembering Working Kirk Reeves

OPB | Aug. 14, 2014 4:36 p.m.

The late street musician Kirk Reeves — one of Portland's most recognizable faces — inspires several public projects.

Walidah Imarisha's Poetic Journey

OPB | Aug. 15, 2014 3:16 p.m.

Academic, critic, and prose writer Walidah Imarisha says poetry's power is an important part of the activist toolbox.

Reflecting On Comedy And Mental Health In The Wake Of Robin Williams Passing

OPB | Aug. 15, 2014 12:47 p.m.

The idea that comedians as a population are somehow sadder than the rest of the world is short-sighted.

Comedians Gather For The First Stumptown Improv Festival

OPB | Aug. 15, 2014 12:20 p.m.

The festival brings troupes from Portland and around the country together for a weekend of improvised antics. Plus, we'll remember Robin Williams.

Arts | Local

Laura Larson's 'Hidden Mother': A Photographic Exhibition

OPB | Aug. 07, 2014 4 p.m.

Photographer Laura Larson has curated a collection of 19th-century images of children that explore early photographic techniques. Her exhibition is on display at Portland's Blue Sky Gallery throughout the month of August.

Oregon Shakespeare Festival's New Lyndon Johnson Play

OPB | AIRDATE: July 25, 2014 12:25 p.m.

Oregon Shakespeare Festival's The Great Society tells the story of the metastasizing war in Vietnam that largely derailed Lyndon Johnson’s ambitious domestic agenda.

Arts | Local

Textile Artist Sidnee Snell On Quilting, Engineering & The Art Of Hand Dyeing

OPB | Aug. 15, 2014 midnight

Textile artist Sidnee Snell hand dyes the colorful fabrics she uses in her unique art quilts. A former engineer, Snell incorporates the computer into her process as she creates quilts which are in essence fabric paintings. View a video slideshow of Snell's hand dying process.

Music | News

Oregon Symphony, Musicians Extend Contract

OPB | Aug. 08, 2014 5:13 p.m.

Talks have produced a one-year extension. Symphony President Showalter says the deal paves the way for growth.

David Shafer's Whiskey Tango Foxtrot

OPB | Aug. 03, 2014 10:28 p.m.

Shafer's first novel hits the stands just as publisher's parent feuds with Amazon.

Non Finito: "No Artist Worth Their Salt Is Ever Finished"

OPB | Aug. 08, 2014 1:32 p.m.

Acclaimed abstract painter Lucinda Parker curates four of her favorites from around the region.


Photo Review: Pickathon 2014

opbmusic | Aug. 07, 2014 10:10 a.m.

After 3 days of music, sun, dust, music and people, we collected these favorite photos from the festival.

Arts | Local

'Art Of The Wild' Celebrates 50th Anniversary Of The Wilderness Act

OPB | July 24, 2014 midnight

Twenty-one Pacific Northwest artists are coming together to showcase work offering a unique look at wilderness reserves. The new show opens in August at the Columbia Center for the Arts in Hood River.

Up Close: Victor Maldonado

OPB | Aug. 01, 2014 1:28 p.m.

See works and hear some thoughts on his work. Also, more about his upcoming show, fusing social practice and Instagram photography.

Sean Joseph Patrick Carney's Social Malpractice Art

OPB | July 31, 2014 8:51 p.m.

Pacific Northwest College of Art alum Sean Joseph Patrick Carney will join us to talk pop songs, parodies, and his conflicted relationship with social practice art.

Crow's Shadow Institute Of The Arts Gets A New Executive Director

OPB | Aug. 01, 2014 9:26 a.m.

Karl Davis starts as executive director next week. He arrives at an interesting time for the organization.

Finding Focus: Elizabeth Leon

OPB | Aug. 01, 2014 2:37 p.m.

Recent PNCA grad talks about finding community and the courage to pursue creative work.

Arts | Local

Victor Maldonado Explores Mexican Stereotypes With His Lucha Art

OPB | Aug. 01, 2014 9:15 a.m.

Artist Victor Maldonado journeyed to Crow's Shadow Institute of the Arts to work on a new series of prints exploring questions of identity through Mexican lucha wrestling masks.

Waste Not: Refuse Workers Profiled

OPB | July 11, 2014 4:22 p.m.

A multi-media project profiles the workers who sift through what Portland throws away - their lives, and their findings.

GIFs Go Competitive With YIX

OPB | AIRDATE: July 11, 2014 9:05 a.m.

Husband and wife team Benjamin and Jenny Diggles have turned the art of the GIF into a competitive sport.

Kill Rock Stars' Foray Into Comedy

OPB | July 11, 2014 4:44 p.m.

Comedy is the new punk? Kill Rock Stars CEO Portia Sabin on why the label started signing people like Cameron Esposito and Ian Karmel.

Matika Wilbur Photographs America's Tribes

OPB | AIRDATE: May 28, 2014 12:30 p.m.

Matika Wilbur is working on Project 562, a journey to photograph every Native American tribe in the U.S.

What Makes Wes Anderson So Andersonian?

OPB | AIRDATE: July 08, 2014 3:23 p.m.

The NW Film Center is spending July and August showing Wes Anderson's beloved ouvre and the films of the directors who inspired him.

Music | Local

One Song: DEAN! - 'Whitest Dove'

OPB | July 08, 2014 7:45 a.m.

Portland husband-and-wife duo Luke and Rachael Price sing one song for OPB's Arts & Life: the nostalgia-laden ballad Whitest Dove live from the Crystal Ballroom in Portland.

Music | Local

Star Anna Turns Toxic Year Into Searing Sound

OPB | Sept. 25, 2013 4:35 p.m.

Washington-based singer songwriter Star Anna's new record chronicles personal trials of a very difficult year.

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April Baer hosts OPB's State of Wonder. You can reach her at:

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