BIOGRAPHY

Heather Lee Birdsong (b. 1984 in Las Vegas, NV) lives and works in Portland, Oregon. Her etchings, handmade books and gouache paintings blend personal symbols, history, folk tales and mythologies in compositions influenced equally by geometric abstraction and Symbolist painters. Birdsong holds a BFA in Intermedia from the Pacific Northwest College of Art (2011) and participated in Print Arts Northwest's Emerging Printmakers Residency Program (2012). RACC awarded her a Project Grant in 2014 to produce Semblant Geometries, a conceptual fine press book blending Euclidean planar geometry and Slavic folk tales. Her work is included in the public collections of the Ella Strong Denison Library, Scripps College, and the Visual Chronicle of Portland.

There is a disordered order to my world. I like to plan, then let things go, accepting chaos as it comes. Printmaking is a natural home for this inclination: the process requires planning, but the application of that process is often imprecise.

 

Education

2011 – BFA in Intermedia, Pacific Northwest College of Art, Portland, OR

2002-2004 – Women’s Studies (Social Research) under Carol Mason, PhD, University of Nevada Las Vegas, NV


Awards and residencies

2014 - Artist's Individual Project Grant, Regional Arts and Culture Council

2012 - Print Arts Northwest Emerging Printmakers Residency Program

2006 - Merit scholarship in painting, Pacific Northwest College of Art


Solo exhibitions

2015 - Semblant Geometries; Back Room at Blackfish Gallery; Portland, Oregon (solo)

2014 - Semblant Geometries; Photo & Print Gallery at PNCA; Portland, Oregon (solo)

2009 - Keeping Quiet; OTWAU Gallery; Portland, Oregon (solo)

2004 - Ravaged; Hounsel House at UNLV, Las Vegas, Nevada (solo)


Selected group exhibitions

2016 - Iteration: Printmaking Pop-Up; Hand Eye Supply; Portland, Oregon

2016 - Variable States: Prints Now; Upfor; Portland, Oregon (as curator)

2013 - Ceci n'est pas un Vernissage; Chambers@916 Gallery; Portland, Oregon

2012 - Print Arts Northwest Residency Program: Recent Graduates; Stonehenge Studios, Portland, OR

2012 - The Printmaker's Hand II Juried Exhibition; Corvidae Press; Port Townsend, Washington

2012 - Cabinet of Curiosities; Photo & Print Gallery at PNCA; Portland, Oregon

2011 - PNCA BFA Senior Thesis Exhibition; Portland, Oregon

2011 - dear Korea,...; ChildU School; Incheon, South Korea

2011 - Spirit Animals; Santa Lucia Print Exchange; Courier Coffee, Portland, Oregon

2011 - 11th Annual BFA Juried Show PNCA Swigert Commons; Portland, Oregon

2010 - Mail Art!, Pont Aven School of Contemporary Art, Brittany, France

2009 - 15x15 Print Portfolio; Photography and Print Gallery at PNCA; Portland, Oregon

2009 - PNCA 9th Annual BFA Juried Show, Portland, Oregon

2007 - PNCA 7th Annual BFA Juried Show, Portland, Oregon

2006 - PNCA 6th Annual BFA Juried Show, Portland, Oregon


Bibliography

Matthew A. Coleman, "Exhibition Review: The Space Between 0 and 1: Printmaking and Digital Technology in Portland", Art in Print, July–August 2016 (p. 37–38). (review, print)

Bob Hicks, “ArtsWatch Weekly: the language of bargains, a prints of a town,” Oregon ArtsWatch (Portland) March 29, 2016. (feature)

Richard Speer, "Ceci n'est pas un Vernissage," Willamette Week (Portland) February 16, 2013. (review, print and online)


Lectures

“Diverse Careers in the Arts Roundtable, “ panelist, Prequel Artist Incubator, Portland, Oregon, July 20, 2015.

”Approaching Galleries,” Mixer Match Induction, guest presenter, co-sponsored by I Heart Art and Pacific Northwest College of Art, Portland, Oregon, April 18, 2012.


Collections

Ella Strong Denison Library, Scripps College

Regional Arts and Culture Council, Visual Chronicle of Portland

Pacific Northwest College of Art, Gilkey Print Studio Archives

Private collections of Jane Beebe, Eric S. Busch, Martha Morgan


Selected honors (critiques/juries)

2013-17 - Panelist, midterm thesis reviews, PNCA undergraduate department, Portland, OR

2017 - Blind panelist for student thesis defense, MFA in Applied Craft and Design, PNCA and OCAC, Portland, OR

2014 -  Juror, 14th Annual Pacific Northwest College of Art BFA Juried Show, Portland, OR


Professional experience

2013-present - Gallery manager at Upfor, Portland, OR

2015 - Guest teacher for beginning etching class, PNCA Continuing Education, Portland, OR

2012-14 - Teaching assistant for beginning etching class, PNCA Continuing Education, Portland, OR

2010-13 - Communications designer, Chambers@916 Gallery, Portland, OR

2010-11 - Volunteer gallery coordinator, A Somewhat Secret Place: Disability and Art, a project of the Oregon Women’s Caucus for Art, Portland, OR


Technical abilities

2011-12 - In-class studio monitor for Beginning Etching and Lithography (professor: Tom Prochaska), PNCA, Portland, OR (operational and safety knowledge of a variety of printmaking equipment and supplies, such as: presses, hot plates, torches, solvents, grounds, etchants, various hand tools, etc.)


Organizations

Southern Graphics Council International (member)

Portland Art Musuem Contemporary Art Council (former member)

Las Vegas Academy of International Studies, Performing and Visual Arts Alumni Association (member)