Fueling the city’s remarkable growth was the arrival during the mid to late Nineties of a wave of affluent new residents.
“A lot of very sawy people seem to be fleeing the urban metropolises in favor of smaller, more manageable cities like Portland,” says Beebe. “So what you end up with is an incredibly sophisti cated little town.” Lured by Portland’s old fashioned, European flavor it has more bookstores per capita than any other city in the U.S. and by the promise of jobs at companies such as Nike and Intel, hordes of twenty and thirtysome things followed the artists’ lead. With them came the demand for good food, good stores and good art.
Kenny Scharf and William Wegman have recently cre ated public sculptures in Portland, and Maya Lin, who designed the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C., is in the process of creating two large scale works for the city.