Portland, July 11th, 2015. Nearly 5,000 watched aerial dance performances during the Bastille Day festival on the Portland Art Museum’s grounds. This was the first time for a co-presented event by the museum and the Alliance Française de Portland, and the crowds enjoyed many educational activities, French food, vendors, music and more. The collaboration was a natural because the Portland Art Museum is currently featuring an exhibition of masterpieces from the École des Beaux-Arts—the original school of fine arts in Paris and a repository for work by Europe’s most renowned artists since the seventeenth century. The collection includes approximately 140 paintings, sculptures, and works on paper dating from antiquity through the nineteenth century and will be on display until September 18th.
According to the Portland Art Museum, Gods and Heroes offers unique insight into the development of an aesthetic ideology that fostered some of western art’s most magnificent achievements. The epic deeds of gods and heroes, enshrined in the Bible and the works of Homer, were the primary narratives from which both aspiring and established academicians drew their inspiration. At the École, learning how to construct persuasive and powerful paintings from carefully delineated anatomy, expressive faces, and convincing architectural and landscape settings was understood to be the route to success and recognition.
The Alliance Francaise got the ball room for the celebration:
The Alliance Française, headquartered in Paris, is a worldwide non-profit organization with the mission of promoting Francophone culture and language and cross-cultural understanding. There are over 1,000 Alliances in the world. Of 100 Alliances in the U.S., the Portland group is the only Alliance in Oregon and ranks 7th in the United States.