Marshall Birnbaum, DWP 2014

Design Week is back, and with it all the architecture, fashion, visual art, and Portland history you could possibly want—and, if we’re being honest, probably much more than you can possibly consume in just one week of design-focused programming throughout the city. A lineup as heady as this one can be intimidating from a scheduling standpoint alone, but it doesn’t have to be! We’ve combed through Design Week’s 2017 offerings to present to you the fest’s most inclusive, adventurous, and aesthetically pleasing programming. From a glimpse into the oeuvre of Kirsten Dunst’s late-’00s heyday, to an educational jaunt through local history via Portland’s bridges, to a very relaxed dance party (truly), here’s what belongs on your agenda for every day of Design Week.

7-11 pm:

Design Week kicks off with an opening party at the fest’s new Southeast digs, the Redd. Promotional materials promise “memorable experiences” and “good vibes,” but I’ve got a better draw: excellent people watching as Portland’s artistic community convenes in one place. The Redd, 831 SE Salmon, $15

11 am-1 pm:

The academic upstarts currently turning higher education on its head, Portland Underground Grad School (PUGS), are hosting a special Design Week walking tour of Portland’s bridges, Portland Bridges: History, Design, Symbolism. If you live in Portland, you probably go over at least one of the city’s bridges every day. Get some insight into your daily traverse along the tour’s 1.5-mile route, as PUGS educators discuss the design of the Hawthorne and Morrison Bridges and Tilikum Crossing, as well as how Portland’s bridges figure into larger urban concerns, like development and transportation. Wouldn’t it be nice to have something to think of besides your imminent tardiness the next time you’re stuck on a bus on the Hawthorne Bridge? Yes, it would! Eastside Esplanade, $15

7:30-9:45 pm:

Fashion in Film, the film series curated by former Mercury managing editor Marjorie Skinner and Portland Monthly style editor Eden Dawn, is celebrating its third anniversary of watching movies through a lens of style. During Design Week, they’re celebrating the milestone with a screening of Sofia Coppola’s pastel-hued, New Order-soundtracked Marie Antoinette, starring Kirsten Dunst in the title role and Jason Schwartzman as Louis XVI. The movie debuted to extremely mixed reviews in 2006, but, per the Design Week description, we should all be able to appreciate its depiction of such outlandish 18th-century fashions as “hair taller than a small child and petticoats wider than a car.” Skinner and Dawn will be joined by local designer Holly Stalder, who’s bringing a one-night-only fashion installation with her. I can’t imagine more appropriate confines for taking in the over-the-top looks of old school French nobility. And if you’re stoked on Kirsten Dunst’s recent career revival as Fargo’s Peggy Blumquist? So much the better. The Hollywood Theatre, 4122 NE Sandy, $9

4-6 pm:

If you believe all those Lean In Try Harder Be Better Girl Bosses Have it All!!! guides for professional women, being a boss lady requires nothing more than a can-do spirit and... leaning skills? This is unfortunate, because the reality is a helluva lot more complicated, especially when you take into account the inequities most women still face in the workplace thanks to trash like the pay gap or harassment in the world of tech (delete Uber! delete Uber!). That’s why it’s so nice to see a Boss Ladies PDX-hosted meet-up on the Design Week docket. A gathering for boss ladies running their own businesses and honing their management skills? Sounds like my kinda people. The Redd, 831 SE Salmon, free

4-8 pm:

In last year’s Design Week issue, we profiled a fashion startup created in a unique partnership between the design firm AKQA and Portland nonprofit New Avenues for Youth, in which AKQA pays and trains homeless and at-risk youth to design and market a clothing line, then leaves its continued operation in their capable hands. The result? dfrntpigeon, the youth-launched fashion line that started in 2015 and returns to Design Week this year to launch the dfrntpigeon Spring 2017 Collection, the Identity Collection. The line’s most recent look featured clever graphic Ts and totes (think cartoony skulls and distorted Charlie Brown stripes). I can’t wait to see what they come up with this time around. The Cleaners at Ace Hotel, 403 SW 10th, free

4-9 pm:

Artists have been killing it lately with cheeky, gorgeous, defiant enamel pins. Check out the jean jacket lapels of your fellow bus passengers on your next TriMet adventure if you don’t believe me. Local design nonprofit WeMake is smartly embracing this trend with a pin-focused fundraiser for Design Week. Pin That Shit brings together pins from 60 invited artists, including Kate Bingaman-Burt, Cate Anevski, and Emily McDowell (whose “Stopped Reading the Comments” pin is a gift to women writers everywhere). Admission is free, and each pin sells for $10, with proceeds going toward WeMake’s efforts to support arts education. Though WeMake hasn’t disclosed what pins will be available, it’s safe to expect emojis, cartoon animals, and feminist-friendly messages. Tillamook Station, 665 N Tillamook, free

Support The Portland Mercury

4-6 pm:

If you love politics as much as you love art, Design Week has your number with Designing a Political Campaign, a panel featuring Commissioner Chloe Eudaly alongside an artist and a designer—that’d be Joe Sacco and (former Mercury art director) Jen Wick, respectively. The three will chat about how design considerations played a role in Eudaly’s triumphant sleeper hit campaign for City Council, and how design and politics intersect more broadly. The Redd, 831 SE Salmon, free

1:30-3 pm:

I don’t know about you, but I generally don’t like dancing unless someone else—preferably a supportive, not-mean teacher—is cueing the movements. If you share my aversion to free-form dancing—if you’re more at home in, say, a structured ballet class than an unhinged wedding reception—you may need to retire your bad attitude for the final day of Design Week, because it’s got a dance party you might actually enjoy! That would be Kate Wallich’s Dance Church, and it sounds goddamn delightful. At dance studio BodyVox, Wallich will lead “an all-abilities movement class” set to her own curated pop playlist. The description emphatically declares that “no previous training is required,” and best of all, the mirrors are covered for this one, so you won’t be tempted to compare your rock step to whatever the person next to you is doing. It’s just the thing to close out a week of design bliss before you hit the closing party back at the Redd. BodyVox, 1201 NW 17th, $15

SLAY Film Fest
In person at the Clinton St. Theater 10/29 & 10/30