Take the Tour

Artwork by Tracie Broughton

The 2017 Open Studios Tour is October 14th & 15th, 21st & 22nd from 10 am to 5 pm each day

Free Admission

Requires mobile device and our free mobile app preloaded with the addresses of our participating artists. 

Use your mobile device to navigate!

(Available September 2017; both iPhone and Android)
Lulu and visitors

Over 100 artists welcome the public during the tour dates

Nearly 100 locations participating around the Portland Metro area (including Clackamas County, Multnomah County and Washington County. Some locations will have multiple artists participating.

This is a self-guided tour:

Anyone can visit the artists during the tour dates and times. It’s a great way to spend a day with your favorite art lovers – family, friends, classmates, students, other artists, or go solo.

Look for our yellow signs designating each artist with a number in their community.

Insider Tip: Use these tools to plan your trip!

Upgrade to a paid Mobile App ($4.99; both iPhone and Android) that includes images from the participating artists, google maps for the addresses, the ability to plan which artists you will see and take notes about the artists you’ve visited and more.

tourguide image

Our printed 2017 Guide to Local Artists ($15) features maps and addresses of the participating artists arranged in 8 geographic communities. You can see an overview maps of the East and West side of Portland to find the communities you’d like to explore. Each community also provides a more detailed map, plus artist bios and images of their art.

Buy the Guide for $15 here or from any of the following businesses: New SeasonsBlick, Artists and Craftsman, Portland Art Museum, Madrona Hill Cafe, Guardino Gallery, Bullseye Glass, Copy Pilot (N Portland)

Why take the tour?

Our Mission: Experience Artists at Work

Art is awesome. The tour is an experience unlike any gallery or museum. It’s fun and provocative. The Tour is about visitors sharing the artists space, witnessing the creative process and asking questions, experiencing different kinds of creativity, engaging with new media, seeing the tools, and maybe even making something themselves.

Portland Open Studios provides an inspirational and educational platform for the public to experience creativity in the environment of the artist’s space. It’s not every day you get to talk to an artist about their work and their process, especially in the place where they are the most creative. We think that experience is pretty cool.

Looking at finished artwork (especially online or in a museum/gallery) it’s easy to think that art is magic. Remarkable art can seem to have appeared finished and never looked any other way than it does and as though no person made it. While this experience of artwork as other-worldly is valid and valuable, Portland Open Studios seeks to pull back the curtain, showing you the person, exposing the process. Artwork is remarkable because it was made by an interesting, fallible person who has a creative experience with their media and tools to make something from nothing.

Support our local artists!

All of the artists have paid for this opportunity to meet you.

Ask questions and feel free to engage artists in conversations about their work, process, and journey. Share your reactions to their artwork respectfully and honestly. Artists appreciate having conversations and receiving validation as well as providing inspiration.

Expect that the artist is selling the works they are displaying and they would love to find new collectors and patrons of their work. Many artists sell different products at varied price points making it easier to purchase prints or replicas. Some artists may be commissioned to create a personal work specifically for you, others may not. You should not feel pressured or obligated to buy anything from the artists.

Portland Open Studios does not take any commission from the artist’s sales. Each artist represents their own business and may accept cash, checks, credit cards, payment plans, or other negotiable terms. All artwork is priced by each artist, and sales are solely the responsibility of the artist.

What can I expect at a studio?

We define a studio as a place where someone makes art. It varies on the type of artist, their medium, and the space they have chosen. Please keep in mind that many art forms use various tools, chemicals, and industrial equipment. Artists are advised to maintain a safe space while demonstrating their creative work. As guests in their space, please make appropriate decisions regarding children, clothing and footwear, and your own safety.

Some artists are gregarious and ready to have conversations, others may be nervous. Some artist are hobbyists, some have additional day jobs, and some are full-time artists.

Some artists are exceedingly tidy with everything item in their studio labeled and others have a small path cleared in their stacks of clutter.

Some artists work in closet sized spaces and some in warehouse sized spaces. Some artists make art in their living room, their basement, their garage, etc and some artists have a dedicated art workspace in an apartment, office, or professional building.

How are the artist's chosen?

Every year about 200 artists apply to participate in Portland Open Studios. Our jury of three arts professionals changes each year. Jurors vote on their favorites based solely on images submitted by the artists. Jurors are not given the names of the artists, their experience level, or anything about them.

Because artists are chosen based on the scores from a different jury each year, the participating artists change each year. Some artists are just emerging and have little experience while others are in local businesses, publications, galleries, and museums.

Where does our revenue come from?  The printed Guide to Local Artists and Mobile Apps

2017 is our 19th year operating Portland Open Studios. We are a 501(c)3 non-profit and all revenues are spent promoting the Tour and supporting the organization. The board is 100% volunteer, comprised of artists and art lovers giving whatever we can to support the local artist scene.

We have advertising and marketing expenses, along with operational costs. Revenues from guide sales make up one third of our income. The artist fees and our ad sales in the Guide pay for the production of the Guide, App development, and website maintenance, and many operational costs.

Get a sense for what the tour is like with this short video from One Hundred Seconds:

*Please note that pricing is out-of-date – details are here and below. Video features Kindra Crick, Jesse Reno, and Jenn Gauer and Meghan Radick from the 2014 Tour.

Have additional questions? We’d love to hear from you:

Email Charlotte Cunningham, Administrator at admin@portlandopenstudios.com and she will answer your question or direct you to the person who can.