Curious Gallery 2015

An arts festival of the wunderkammer revival, January 10-11, 2015 at Crowne Plaza Downtown-Convention Center, Portland, OR. Capacity is limited, so register below for your weekend pass.


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We are pleased to announce Curious Gallery is returning for 2015! Save the date for January 10-11, 2015 at the Crowne Plaza Portland-Downtown Convention Center at 1441 NE 2nd Avenue.

Vending applications are available here.

Programming applications are available here.

Applications for the art show will be available soon; questions may be directed to

Long before public museums became a feature of many cities, private citizens in Europe and elsewhere formed their own extensive collections of scientific specimens and cultural artifacts meant to educate and inspire their beholders. A longtime collector of natural history specimens, Portland artist and author Lupa wanted to increase awareness and appreciation of wunderkammern (“wonder cabinets”), or cabinets of curiosity, and their eclectic contents. Curious Gallery is the result, a weekend featuring an art show, exhibits, presentations, hands-on workshops, and special programming for lovers of taxidermy, natural wonders, and strange treasures old & new.

Get news, updates, and info on special deals on Twitter, Facebook and Google Plus. Early bird rates for weekend passes are available through November 16; register below to take advantage of this great deal! Please note that we do not have pre-registration for attendees under the age of 18; discounted admission will be available for attendees under the age of 14 at the door, and children 6 and under may attend for free.

If you are a business or individual interested in sponsoring Curious Gallery 2015, or are an individual wishing to volunteer at the event, please contact us at

We are pleased to announce that Rewild Portland will be receiving a portion of the ticket sales for Curious Gallery 2015. We will also be taking additional donations from attendees who wish to support this local nonprofit organization that educates children and adults alike on a variety of earth-based creative and practical skills. You can find out more at


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We are now accepting programming submissions for Curious Gallery 2015; please send us your proposals using this form.

Curious Gallery’s 2014 programming received a strong positive response from attendees and presenters alike, and this year we’re expanding our event to include even more panels, workshops and other presentations to pique your curiosity. Possible programming selections may include, but are not limited to:

–Presentations/panels on the history and modern revival of cabinets of curiosities and their contents; specimen collection and preservation, scientific advances of the Renaissance and beyond, and other natural sciences topics; the cultures behind archaeological artifacts; handcrafting skills old and new; and other subjects to inform and inspire the audience.

–Demonstrations of relevant technology and skills, whether the mad scientist fare of quack medicine, or the rebirth of “archaic” skills by modern makers. Obscure tech and skills that no one else has ever heard of are a bonus!

–Hands-on workshops were very popular last year; we’re looking for teachers of theme-appropriate skills and crafts accessible to a general audience. Materials fees per participant should be free or in the $5-$15 range as attendees will be paying for materials above and beyond the registration fee; however, we have limited space for workshops with higher materials fees.

–Cultural performances such as dance, theater, and storytelling that can fit on a small stage. Please be prepared to offer the audience some history and background either before or after the performance itself; the goal is to both entertain and educate.

Not sure if your programming idea will fit our event? Contact us at to ask us for feedback.

Here are just some of the presentations, panels and other programming that will be featured at Curious Gallery 2015; we will add more as we confirm them:

Cleaning, Preservation, and Art of Animal Bones
Presented by Carla Brauer

Learn how to prepare, clean, and finish skulls and other bones for display, collections, or art. This panel will go over the procurement of raw specimens, how to prepare animal parts prior to cleaning, and the most effective cleaning methods: dermestid beetle colonies and masceration. This will include an overview of the care, maintenance and breeding of beetles as well as the risks and rewards of keeping them. Degreasing and whitening techniques will be discussed, as well as articulation and ideas for using or altering finished bones as art.

The Altar of Curiosities
Presented by Lupa

In recent years, there’s been a resurgence in interest in cabinets of curiosity featuring natural history specimens, ancient artifacts and other wonders. The altar of curiosities combines the conscious aesthetics of the classic wunderkammer with the meditative focus of the spiritual altar. Lupa discusses how to find and display curiosities, how to incorporate them into your spiritual practice, how to work with antique and otherwise secondhand sacred items, and more!

Taxidermy 101
Panelists TBA

In recent years taxidermy has become rather trendy, but what’s it take to be a modern-day taxidermist? In this group panel we’ll discuss what taxidermy is (and isn’t), some basics of legalities and ethics, where to get supplies and how to start creating your own taxidermy creations. We’ll also have a Q&A session, so bring your questions about this ancient art in the 21st century!

Morbid Curiosities

Panelists TBA

In the classic wunderkammer, the “wonders” weren’t just your run-of-the-mill natural history specimens; they also included medical oddities, strange mutated specimens, and supposed remnants of fabulous creatures known only to myth and legend. Our panelists will discuss this stranger side to the cabinet of curiosities, including how you can create a weird collection of your own, and a chance to ask our panelists any questions you may have about the weirder side of the cabinet of curiosities!

Curious Gallery Show and Tell
Open to all attendees

Do you have some neat antique or natural history specimen you’d like to share with others? Got some oddity that you haven’t been able to identify? Or are you just interested in other people’s collections of the weird and wonderful? Here’s where you can bring in skulls and tiny terrariums, ancient relics and modern recreations, and share them with like-minded people!


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skinny1Lupa is a Portland-based artist, author, and amateur naturalist. Since 1998 she has incorporated hides, bones and the like into her mixed-media practical creations, with a special emphasis on honoring the beings who once wore these remains in life. Lupa has published several books on nature-based spirituality, to include her 2010 Skin Spirits: The Spiritual and Magical Use of Animal Parts. Her primary website, The Green Wolf, serves as a portal for her work in general. As organizer for Curious Gallery, it is her wish to create a place for those who love the natural world and the creativity it inspires a place to meet, learn, and share their works and accomplishments.

Carla Brauer

Carla is a bone obsessed nature lover living in the gorgeous Willamette Valley. Carla began teaching herself the art of bone preservation many years ago while working on a goat meat ranch and being unable to discard the beautifully horned heads of the bucks that they were slaughtering for meat. Over the years, she has refined her craft to produce impeccably cleaned bones that can be passed down for generations. She uses a colony of flesh-eating dermestid beetles along with other processes, both natural and chemical, to achieve museum-quality specimens. She also does bone carving, painting, metalizing, and repair and restoration of bones, horns and antlers. She may be found online at


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Curious Gallery presented by
Thanks to our supporters


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Ticket Type Ticket Price Quantity Total Price
USD 20 USD 20.00