RACC has tapped artist Sabina Zeba Haque to be part of a year-long residency at the Portland Archives and Records Center (PARC). The artist will collaborate with PARC staff to explore Portland neighborhoods east of 82nd Avenue and to unravel the history of exclusion and inclusion in this community. This is the second in a series of public art residencies funded by the City of Portland Percent for Art Program administered by RACC.
For many years, 82nd Avenue served as the easternmost boundary of the city of Portland. In 1980s Portland expanded the city’s boundaries roughly to 182nd Avenue, annexing approximately 140,000 people. Long-time residents, neighborhood activists and an influx of South East Asian immigrants came together in this evolving geographical space in a decade marked by economic and political turmoil. Today, with a quarter of the city’s population and nearly 40% of its youth, East Portland is the most diverse and rapidly growing section of the city.
Through her residency, Haque will explore how the neighborhood’s identity has evolved over the last 35 years, and how Portland can preserve its past while fostering a more inclusive civic identity. Using oral histories, archival sources, and theater workshops, the artist will create a voice-by-voice community portrait of the communities around 82nd Avenue via hand-drawn animation and video. The project seeks to give nuance and form to this vibrant neighborhood and works toward civic equity through art and creative community engagement.
Haque is an artist of South Asian descent raised in Karachi, Pakistan. Her work combines oral histories, video performance and hand-drawn animation to explore the turbulent transformations of identity and place. She received an MFA in Painting from Boston University and teaches at Portland State University. In 2015 Haque was a TEDxMtHood speaker and artist-in-residence.
UPDATE: Annexation & Assimilation: Exploring City Archives East of 82nd Ave
Haque’s project exhibition, Annexation & Assimilation: Exploring City Archives East of 82nd Ave, will be on display at Open Signal from February 16 – April 28, 2017. Public viewing hours will be Tuesday – Friday (10:00am -10:00pm) and Saturday – Sunday (noon – 8:00pm).
On April 20th, there will be a panel discussion: Policy and Imagination: Place-Keeping in Portland, How Artists and City Managers Can Envision the Future City at Open Signal.
For more information contact Kristin Calhoun at email@example.com or 503.823.5401.