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Art at the Rec Center

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Beth Kerschen

Kerschen's art is on display near the Member Services desk and in the Student Lounge on the second floor of the Rec Center during Fall Term 2016.

Beth Kerschen is a multi-disciplinary artist using photography and printmaking to express a unique vision. She graduated with a Bachelors in Fine Arts from Colorado College focusing on photography, digital art and printmaking. After college, she moved to Boston and worked for Polaroid using her extensive photographic and digital imaging knowledge. She worked for 10 years as a graphic designer with several creative firms in Boston, eventually moving to Portland, Oregon in 2008. She has returned to her fine art roots from college and is now creating photo-illustrations combined with her favorite medium—printmaking. In 2015, she was awarded a Professional Development Grant from Portland’s Regional Arts & Culture Council (RACC) and a large format installation commission for the Portland International Airport. She uses a unique blend of photography and printmaking to create urban landscapes that chronicle city culture and history creating nostalgia for the build environment that is an integral part of our modern culture. To see more of Kerschen's work, you can visit the art gallery section of her website.

Artist-in-Residence Program

Campus Rec launched a new Artist-in-Residence Program during the 2014/2015 academic year to bring unexpected culture, education and engagement into the Rec Center.

The inaugural resident artist was PSU Associate Professor Harrell Fletcher, who created and directs the School of Art’s MFA in Art and Social Practice. Social practice is a relatively new field with historical precedents in documentary, community engagement and conceptual art.

Fletcher and his students are experimenting with a series of projects intended to facilitate shared knowledge, skills and culture from across the PSU community.


Portland Museum of Art & Sports

The Portland Museum of Art & Sports is located at Portland State University’s Rec Center. An institution within an institution, the museum was founded in 2015 as a dynamic space dedicated to the exploration of two subjects that are rarely paired together: contemporary art and recreational sports. Through installations, events and programming that showcase local to international artists the museum seeks to explore unconventional situations for engagement. Expanding an art establishment into the realm of recreation initiates conversation between these two practices, their practitioners and their audiences. The museum is ever-growing with new acquisitions. We invite you to observe, enjoy and activate the spaces where art and sports intersect.

Museum founders and 2015/2016 artists-in-residence: Lauren Moran and Anke Schüttler

Art & Sports Lecture Series

Explore the intersections of art and sports in this new lecture series by Campus Rec's Artist-in-Residence Program. A different artist spoke every Thursday during Spring 2015 term, each sharing a dedication to interdisciplinary work that crosses lines and disorients stereotypical understandings of artist and athlete identity.

April 9 - Alicia McDaid

Alicia McDaid presents her Art & Sports Lecture to a crowd of people in the Campus Rec Lobby on April 9, 2015

Alicia is a Portland-based visual, performance and video artist celebrating the emotional ecstasy and anguish of chronic existential crises with a comedically macabre flourish. Alicia gave a presentation about using dance and movement in her work and a performance from the piece she is workshopping right now called "The Workout for the Recently Divorced."  

She has been a featured performer in the 2013 Movement Research Festival in New York, Portland Institute of Contemporary Art's Time Based Art Festival in 2008, 2009 and 2012 and in the On the Boards' Northwest New Works Festival in Seattle in 2009.

April 16 - Physical Education

The three members of Physical Education present their Art & Sports Lecture in the Campus Rec Lobby on April 16, 2015

The members of Physical Education each have a long standing relationship with performances involving endurance, grandeur, scale, and audience engagement/entanglement/investment/participation. As such, they attempt to create environments and programs (including an all-levels movement class titled Transcendentaerobicourage) that support discovery or revivification of an individual's potential for embodiment, and conversation around how a sense of self-embodiment can transform modes of viewing performance/performing bodies.

Portland based Physical Education (PE) is comprised of dance/performance artists Keyon Gaskin, Allie Hankins, Lucy Lee Yim and Takahiro Yamamoto. PE works to inspire a critical dialogue that acknowledges and scrutinizes the perceived illegibility and messiness of the performing body. PE offers immersive modes of engagement with dance and performance, which include reading groups, lectures/artist talks, performances, movement classes and dance parties.

April 23 - Ryan Woodring

Ryan Woodring presents his Art & Sports Lecture in the Campus Rec Lobby on April 23, 2015

Ryan Woodring spoke about the artists in Over and Back, an exhibition about sports and memory that he curated at Surplus Space, along with a current project with collaborator Peter Vickery in which the two artists mechanically recreate a famous three-point shot made by Portland Trailblazer guard Damian Lillard.

Ryan Woodring is a Portland-based artist and curator, and founder of Prequel Artist Incubator for Emerging Artists. Originally from Doylestown, Pennsylvania, he graduated from Carnegie Mellon University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts and a second degree in French Studies in 2010. Woodring moved to Portland in 2013 to work as a visual effects artist at Laika on the Oscar-nominated film The Boxtrolls. He has taught painting at Carnegie Mellon’s Precollege Art Department, was a mentor for Brewhouse Distillery Artist Residency Program in Pittsburgh and currently teaches animation at Hollywood Theatre in Portland.

April 30 - Katie Holden & Chris Freeman

Chris Freeman (left) and Katie Holden (right) present their Art & Sports Lecture in the Campus Rec Lobby on April 30, 2015

Chris Freeman and Katie Holden’s lecture for the Art and Sports program at PSU. They addresses issues of competition, gender roles, and failure. Both have explored the overlap between a creative practice and physical training by referencing boxing, body building, and rock climbing in their work. While the triumph of success is thrilling, Freeman and Holden see the connection that athletes and artists both eventually embrace failure and its opportunities for improvement.

Chris Freeman addresses issues of masculinity and identity as a normal white straight American male through photography, performance, and video. He holds a BFA from Pacific Northwest College of Art and is a current MFA Candidate at Portland State University.

Katie Holden works with a wide range of materials to investigate the overlap of digital space and natural place as it relates to painting. She is a recipient of the Arlene Schnitzer Visual Arts Prize, has participated in the Signal Fire Artist Residency, and works as an advisory board member for Surplus Space (an alternative arts space in Portland, Oregon.) She holds a BFA from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and is a current MFA Candidate at Portland State University for Contemporary Art Practice.

May 7 - Arianna Warner

Arianna Warner presents her Art & Sports Lecture in the Campus Rec Lobby on May 7, 2015

Through art and sports, Arianna Warner has learned to connect to others, adapt to various situations and engage with the community around her. In this lecture, Warner walked her audience through her evolution as both an artist and athlete, discussing art projects, adaptive sports, play, and how art and sports have played an integral role in her life.

As an athlete/artist with a disability, Arianna has learned there are still opportunities to be active in the community through adaptive sports. Finding inclusive ways for all to participate in not only physical activities but also within Warner's art practice is a priority in her life.

May 14 - Nathan McKee

Mckee stands in front of group to talk for his presentation.

McKee discussed his experience making art and how his relationship to sports has affected his art practice. Nathan McKee is an artist and illustrator who lives and works in Portland, Oregon. McKee’s illustrations and paper cutouts utilize simple lines and flat color, and are inspired by comics, sports, music and other elements of popular culture.

May 21 - Adam Moser

Moser sits in front of group to talk for his presentation.

Moser, whose work has been used in Major League Baseball and on, highlighted a variety of his sports-related projects that include themes of fame, work, media, documentary film and our inherent need to play something.

May 28 - Lee Walton

Walton stands in front of group to talk for his presentation.

Artist Lee Walton wrapped up our Art & Sports Lecture Series with an entertaining presentation of his work. Lee enjoys breaking down established systems or rules in sports, often to comical effect. His practice includes drawing, performance, system-based events and new media. You can view his work at

Art in the Rec Center

Dance in the Rec Center

Dancers wove creatively in and around the objects and physical space of the Rec Center on May 22, 2015, treating afternoon gym buffs to a little art during their workout. It was part of our Artist-in-Residence program, which we started this academic year to bring unexpected art and culture into the Rec Center.


Two-Ball Basketball Game

Two balls, one court, one game. Go.
Campus Rec hosted a two-ball basketball game on May 28, 2015, a re-creation of a visual art project by Israeli artist Uri Tzaig. The teams were made up of PSU faculty and staff; the rules and strategies were made up on the fly.


Jazz in the Weight Room

On December 10, 2014, Fletcher presented Jazz in the Weight Room featuring The Mario Sandoval Trio, comprised of PSU students Mario Sandoval, Micah Hummel and Noah Simpson. The trio played live jazz music for one hour for members exercising in the Rec Center weight room.


Life Drawing in the Rec Center

 On March 6, 2015, life drawing students drew Rec Center members as they exercised. The final artwork was displayed in the Rec Center.


Opera in the Rec Center

On March 6, 2015, members enjoyed live opera performances by PSU students Saori Erickson, Aaron Lange, Haley Maddox and Hope McCaffrey, accompanied by Colin Shepard.


Custom Backstroke Flags

Fletcher and his team created custom backstroke flags with photographs of youth swim lesson participants. The flags were displayed in the Rec Center pool for a limited time.

Backstroke flags displayed across pool, custom designed for Art in the Rec Center.

Intellectual Ecosystem 2010

Portland State University Urban Center ASRC Building
Video Projection System, 12’ x 16’ Holographic screen
Custom Programming to remix the clips
160 minutes of original video content

  • Executive Producer/Director: Fernanda D’Agostino
  • Co-Producer: Valerie Otani
  • Director of Photography: Harry Dawson

Other Credits Information

Portland State University Environmental Studies Professor John Reuter has called for the creation of new metaphors and the identification of characteristic patterns that will allow people to grasp the immensity of natural processes. “Intellectual Ecosystem” adopts the metaphor of the ecosystem, as a way of capturing the intertwining strands of research and thought that characterize the modern university and its relationship to the city.

Video projections on the glass façade of the University Academic and Student Recreation Center reinforce the University’s identity as an institution at the cutting edge of contemporary computer science and digital communication. The moving images animate the plaza, engaging both students, and the public that passes through campus on the streetcar or come to PSU for events, reinforcing the identity of PSU as a source of energy and activity in the city.

Eighteen different faculty researchers and an equal number of student cultural groups were involved as advisors and subjects to develop a series of dreamlike vignettes. Faculty research using advanced digital imaging system is another important strand woven into the experimental video system.  The vignettes are remixed constantly so the video program is never the same. The screen is transparent even when the projector is active allowing the activities of students inside the building to become another layer in the composition. The projections also pass through the screen, animating the surface of the plaza below.

Digital artwork projected in the Rec Center