art critic

Inside the Mind of an Art Critic

Inside the Mind of an Art Critic

Richard Speer doesn’t spook easily. As art critic for Willamette Week, Portland’s highly regarded alternative weekly newspaper, Speer has strolled through galleries in and around the Oregon city for more than a decade. He’s seen unsettling creative work, including William Pope.L’s giant reverse image of the United States made out of 5,000 rotting hot dogs. He’s also seen an upscale-gallery show featuring the paintings of Rama—a 21-year-old Asian elephant at the Oregon Zoo. Still, when Speer walked into Breeze Block Art Gallery in Portland’s Chinatown arts district last March, he felt as if he’d entered a haunted house … albeit one from someone’s bland, colorless childhood.