WHO WE ARE
The Elisabeth Jones Art Center is the only art institution with a world-wide reach that is dedicated entirely to the development of an extensive range of art programs to advocate for the environmental health of our home planet and social justice for all our people.
WHAT WE DO
We act locally, we act globally, our focus on the present world as well as the future. Our concerns range from the advocacy for the small scale (for instance, in Portland, protecting trees on house lots scheduled for redevelopment) to the international (pairing local artists with artists from around the world to describe the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic through collaborate artwork). Our projects response to the immediate (the Central American immigrant crisis) and the long-term (the disappearance of glaciers due to global warming).
HOW WE DO IT
We work collaboratively with individuals and with groups small and large.
The art we encourage and support is conventional (paintings) and unconventional (a canoe created during an exhibit from a single log to demonstrate the beauty of Native American craftwork).
Artists locally and internationally contribute their unique skills to an ever-widening palette of presentations. The work is of the highest quality but never limited by a preconception of what art is.
WHY WE DO IT
Logical arguments are never enough when confronting environmental degradation. Art, on the other hand, which touches people in places arguments can’t possibly reach, has the power to be an essential part of the web of influences that will put an end to global warming and to the environmental damage caused by practices such as overfishing and clearcutting forests.
Logical arguments are even less effective when it comes to such evils as racism and other social injustice. We are the children of a tribalism that cuts us off from others and which has infected us in ways we often fail to recognize.
Here, also, art has a critical role to play, changing us in positive ways, ways that we also often fail to recognize but remain crucial to the understanding and motivation necessary for human progress.
IN THESE WAYS WE OFFER
A POSITIVE DIRECTION
The creation of a world-wide community of artists working on collaborative projects demonstrates of the possibility of greater human cooperation in solving the many problems we face as a global community.
And the cooperation of local artists provides the same example with regard to solving immediate and local problems.
To accomplish all this through the creation of beautiful as well as challenging art is to employ one of the most wonderful of our gifts, uniting us with those humans who millennia ago created emblematic cave art at the dawn of human culture.
HOW WE FIT IN THE COMMUNITY ECOLOGY
We work not just with artists but also with others in the Portland area, school groups and neighborhood associations and others.
The goal is to enfold the whole community within the care of the environment and the promotion of social justice.
Through such programs as the presentation of contemporary Native American art and support for the humane treatment of immigrants, we reach out to the greater American society.
And with the work of a team of artists from around the world, the universal language of art provides a perfect vehicle in support of the environment and social justice, an ecology not of a hierarchical power structure but rather a web of cooperation.