Portland Art & Heritage Fair 2020

Portland Art & Heritage Fair (PAHF) originated as an offshoot of Portland Now, INC. However, Portland Museum had the honor of hosting this celebratory fair for the first time in the seven-year history of the event, renaming it “2020: For the Birds!”

Portland Museum’s Mural of Audubon’s Great Blue Heron, Plate 211, by Danny Seim

2020: For the Birds!

After enduring such a challenging year as a city, it was great to see so many Portland neighbors and Louisville residents come together and celebrate the art and heritage of our neighborhood while maintaining social distance.

In-progress photo of Joe Autry’s tree carving performance

In 2019, local arborist Ron Miller cut down a dead ash tree located on our front property. This year, we hired renowned chainsaw artist, Joe Autry, to carve away at the 20-foot tree stump as part of a live performance. Autry’s sculpture, a tribute to Portland native Captain Mary Millicent Miller, became the focal point of PAHF.

Photo of “It” themed Jeep featured in PAHF

Congratulations to local artist Al Gorman for winning the Louisville Visual Art juried art competition with his found-material bird sculpture.

Along with the professional LVA artists, we also had a dozen bird-themed submissions by the students at Western Middle School. Coordinated by teachers Amanda Thompson, Ben Owen and Steven Rahe, the Western exhibit showcased our neighborhood’s talented youth. We are currently in the process of hanging each work inside the museum, in case you missed it at the fair!

Photo of Raymond Graf’s plaster bust of John James Audubon

Special thanks to Raymond Graf, who not only loaned us two circus-like parachutes for the event, but also presented us a life-sized plaster bust of John James Audubon for our permanent collection.

Portland Museum would like to thank our neighbors Ernie and Todd. Ernie has lived across the street from the museum for four decades. This year, he took on the role of “hot rod curator”, rounding up several souped-up classic Portland vehicles to place around our grounds. Todd is a retired professional ironworker who runs a welding shop a couple blocks away. He not only helped us set up a 40’ ladder alongside our building to repair a detached gutter, he also welded a giant rusted chain, found nearby in the Ohio River, into a beautiful anchor that he installed into our front flower bed.

We would also like to thank Portland residents Danny McDole and Judy Schroeder, the Portland Anchor newspaper, PNI, musician Charles Rivera, the University of Louisville, Change Today/Change Tomorrow, Please & Thank You, ARGO, and Pii. Without the help and dedication of these amazing people, Portland Art & Heritage Fair would not have been nearly as successful.