PoMo Picks

Top Things to Do This Weekend: July 4–7

Buckle in for blues on the Waterfront, clowns at CoHo Theatre, sandwich art at Carnation Contemporary, and Tom Cruise at Cartopia.

By Rebecca Jacobson, Brendan Nagle, and Conner Reed July 2, 2019

Apsáalooke Feminist #4 by Wendy Red Star, whose work is part of a new group exhibit opening at Upfor Gallery this weekend


Night Movies at Cartopia

Sundown Sunday, Cartopia, FREE
This outdoor series hosted by the popular Southeast Hawthorne food cart pod offers a different flick every single Sunday, all summer long. This week, settle in for 1989’s Born on the Fourth of July, starring Tom Cruise as a disillusioned Vietnam vet. 


Waterfront Blues Festival

Thu–Sun, Tom McCall Waterfront Park, $15+
One of Portland’s 4th of July staples, the Waterfront Blues Fest has been impressing audiences with blues, soul, and roots musicians and fireworks displays for more than three decades. This year’s headliners include Karl Denson’s Tiny Universe, blues vocalist Shemekia Copeland, Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue, and our city’s perennially popular Marchfourth Marching Band. As always, proceeds benefit the Oregon Food Bank.

The Builders and the Butchers

9 p.m. Fri, Mississippi Studios, $16–18
The twangy Portland folk-rockers manage to shirk aw-shucks earnestness, thanks to their penchant for apocalyptic lyrics and front man Ryan Sollee’s nasal yowl. They’re joined on the bill by fellow locals Loch Lomond, known for bittersweet harmonies and instrumental intricacy.

Speaker Minds

9 p.m. Sat, Mississippi Studios, $10
The local hip-hop collective has been lighting up Portland stages with their high-energy performances and exceptional musicianship for nearly a decade. They’ll bring their socially conscious, genre-fluid tunes to Mississippi Studios in what’s sure to be a spirited affair.


Our Ruined House

7:30 p.m. Fri–Sun, Reed College Performing Arts Building, $20–25
The ever-iconoclastic Portland Experimental Theatre Ensemble promises Pussy Riot masks, live-feed surveillance video, and a giant octopus in this new show, an exploration of relationships both romantic and geopolitical.

CoHo Summerfest

7:30 p.m. Fri, 2 and 7:30 p.m. Sat–Sun, CoHo Theatre, $25 (children are $5)
Slabtown’s CoHo Productions brings four new pieces to the stage. Up this weekend is Coup de Foudre, a kid-friendly homage to silent film that centers on the relationship between a clown and a ballerina.

Visual Art

The Artistic and Eclectic Will Martin: Selected Works, 1957-1985

10 a.m.–5 p.m. Fri–Sat, Architectural Heritage Center, $7
Architect Will Martin, who died in 1985, might be best known as the lead designer of Pioneer Courthouse Square. But he was more than just the mastermind of Portland’s living room—he was a sculptor, painter, and furniture designer, with interests that roved from the natural environment to Pop Art and Postmodernism. This exhibit collects hand sketches of his work (which also included homes, banks, offices, and a quirky pizza parlor), architectural models, paintings, and sculptures.


11 a.m.–6 p.m. Fri–Sat, Upfor Gallery, FREE
In this group exhibit, five artists—April Bey, Bean Gilsdorf, Michelle Grabner, Faith Wilding (with feminist collective subRosa), and Wendy Red Star—take on what it means to depict women and their “domestic arts,” exploring where the political and intimate realms converge. Expect work in a wide range of media, from fiber arts to sculpture to photography.

OPENING Jessie Weitzel Le Grand

Noon–5 p.m. Sat–Sun, Carnation Contemporary, FREE
In Bloom Tomb, the local sculptor and second-grade teacher showcases mixed-media “artifacts and snacks” from an imagined town she calls Ny By. Sounds precious, but it’s not: Le Grand’s multilayered sculptures are colorful, cheeky affairs featuring flowers and sandwich fixings.

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