“I get to work with some individuals (city workers) who work hard every day, usually with their hands, but they don’t consider what they do to be artwork. They consider it to be very necessary work. I consider art work to be very necessary work.” – Daniel Minter, Art At Work artist with Public Services

“Necessary Work” is a new exhibit at the Chambers Gallery at City Hall which will have an opening reception on Thursday, September 29th from 5-8pm. The exhibit showcases some of the art, stories, photographs, and poems created during Portland’s last four years with Art At Work. Specific projects represented by the artwork include Forest City Times, Lines Portland, Public Works, Ties That Bind, Thin Blue Lines, and City Writers Group.

The opening reception on September 29th features a welcome from new City Manager Mark Rees at 5:30pm, followed by members of the Portland Police Department reading poems and performing excerpts from the original performance “Radio Calls.” There will also be a few stories from Public Service’s Construction Crew and the City Writers Group. Some of their work hangs in posters in city offices.

The artwork created by these 77 city workers and 28 local artists have had a great impact on the city’s workforce and the local community. Police officers still report that residents and students come up to them regularly to talk about the calendars or performances. Public Service and Social Services employees and AFSCME union members are eager to participate in the next project – Portland Works. Plus, the work they have created has been shared with city staff, elected officials and city union workers in Chicago, Providence, Pittsburgh, Los Angeles, Stonington and Tucson.

  The exhibit will continue through March, with more work being added from our two newest citywide projects – Portland Works and Meeting Place.

streetlights on  • water clean  •  classes taught  • library open  •  fire out  • buses running  • epidemic contained  •  burglar apprehended  •  trash collected  •  accounts received  •  plane landed  •  votes counted  •  zoning changed  •  art installed  •  trees pruned  • afterschool rec begun  •  stadium clean  •  shelter open  • parking dispute resolved

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Officer Ray Ruby with City Communications Director Nicole Clegg

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Public Services in the house: Ann Mosley and Gordie Greenlaw

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Meeting Place participants, Penny Harris, Police Chief Mike Sauschuck, Sara Holmbom Lund from Senator Collins and Marty

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Poet/Photographer and Police Officer Gayle Petty

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Marty Pottenger and Treasury Clerk/Poet Tina Carlstrom

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Forest City Times cast members Officer Steve Black and Officer Ray Ruby share excerpts from Radio Calls

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City Manager Mark Rees with Baysider Susan McCloskey and City Councilor Dory Waxman

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State Legislator Anne Haskell, poet Betsy Sholl and Portland Adult Ed Co-Director Anja Hanson with Marty Pottenger

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Community activist and found of Portland NAACP June McKenzie with Marty

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LINES Portland wall at Neccessary Work

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Art At Work Wall with art by Kaatrina Weslien

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Health & Human Services wall - Ties That Bind - with artist Elizabeth Jabar

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City Writers Group performances by Treasury Clerk Tina Carlstrom and Parking Shift Supervisor Don Burns

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Charge Nurse Yun Zhong, RN, Ties That Bind participant

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2011