I am honored to be guest organizer and curator for Public Annex's first annual Self-Taught Artist Fair, Flying Like A Rock, hosted by Pacific Northwest College of Art (PNCA) from September 7 -28 2017. As a non-profit organization in the Portland area, Public Annex’s mission “is to break down systemic barriers that prohibit marginalized populations from inclusivity by building a community around accessible farming and art programming.” Public Annex currently offers weekly art classes, urban farming, lectures and workshops, and artist representation. In an extension of this programming, PA is excited to launch The Self-Taught Artist Fair, which draws together artists from a myriad of backgrounds and practices beyond an institutional art community.
Flying Like A Rock, the first exhibition under this umbrella, aims to include works from artists who identify as ‘self-taught’, who make work independent from formal training in the arts, and whose work resonates with this year’s theme. The title, Flying Like A Rock, comes from a Portland based artist who coined the phrase to describe his feeling of being unseen by society at large. He urges us all to make eye contact. This show seeks work that makes contact as an expression of how the artist wants to be seen, touched, heard, or felt as an individual flying in full self-expression.