Art Consultant

It is the 50th anniversary for the Portland Trailblazers and we were asked to switch out the photos in the players hallway at the Moda Center,   Working with the Arakawa cable system gives us this opportunity to switch out artwork and continue the timeless presentation.

Portland Trailblazers 50th Anniversary

All hung up


This project was in conjunction with Studio Kale_Art.  The artwork is by Eugene, Oregon artist Jenny Gray. Being placed outside the fitness room and  being almost life size was appropriate.  Artwork was printed on canvas and framed in a float frame.

A view from the fitness room

Embarking upon a commissioned piece of art for your company should be an exciting adventure, one that brings leaders in your organization together and helps to illuminate shared goals, visions and aspirations. This process can often uncover latent ideas about your company history, culture and future visions. It can also be fraught with subjective opinion, conflicting ideas about process, budget and more.

Utilizing a professional art consultant can help your group to identify the proper artist in addition to establishing a clear budget, process and timeline. The consultant will also help stakeholders to manage expectations, coordinate reviews with the artist as the work is in process and correctly mount, frame and install your new artwork. Finally, your consultant can help you enhance your original concept by engaging with all key stakeholders, including the artist, and facilitating the sharing of ideas, resulting in a more cohesive and successful outcome.

With that being said, there are still some best practices your group should consider before undertaking the commission.

  1. Be clear about the aims of the commission and what you hope to achieve by it. Consult widely with the members of your organization who will be in regular visual contact with the final piece of art, or whose customers will be in regular visual contact with the final piece of art.
  2. Decide what decision makers will be key stakeholders in the process and aim to keep the group small and focused. Art is a difficult thing to decide on by committee. Art and individuals preference on art is a subjective experience. Identify and define the selection process to be used and who will participate in the process. It is essential that all those who will be in a position to say “yes” to the final design are involved from the outse, from the drawing up of the brief through to the final selection. It should be a manageable group, which has the ability to remain involved throughout the whole process.
  3. Honor the revision timeline. Along the way with the process of commissions there is a point where a request for more revisions is too late. So the stakeholders involved have to be available for the designated revision opportunities.

Good communication and a cohesive decision making group can help to make the commission experience, along with a good consultant, smooth and successful, culminating in a work of art to be proud of for the lifespan of your company or organization.

I recently got a call from my long-time client, the Blazers, to come and take a look at some things they were thinking about doing in their newly remodeled practice space in Tualatin. They had some items—Blazers art— of an awkward shape and size their facilities folks weren’t comfortable with mounting on the wall. Bill Branch, assistant general manager, has a really creative mind in addition to being just an all-out nice human being. He wanted to make an artistic display of some out-of-commission basket balls in his office as well as re-hang some photographs I had mounted for them on bamboo a couple of years ago.

I love the idea of using the everyday objects of your work environment and re-imagining them as stand-on-their-own art or visual pieces. It really brings the space into holistic focus. But, as you know, not everyone knows how to hang a three dimensional object in a way that looks fresh and unfettered. It just so happens I had the perfect hardware to float the balls off the wall (it’s called Invisi Ball – doesn’t that just figure?).

I brought along my best installer to do this, as well as mount a large Blazer’s insignia cut from a thin sheet of plexi layered with metal. The facility guys were really worried about this one! Next up for the Blazers is a do-over of their family room. This needs to be a comfortable space for spouses and kids to hang out while they wait for their players. Stay tuned!

Here I am again tricking out another dental clinic!  I love thinking of the blissful journey patients will take as their eyes are filled with sweeping photographic landscapes of our great Northwest—soothing artwork.

Dental Care Today provides dental services for both adults and children. They’ve just bought a large property for a new clinic in Hillsboro. They’ve gone with local, self-taught, photographer, Alan Leahy who captures epic scenery around Oregon and Washington.

There are over 50 pieces to be picked and hung in the space of various sizes, including some focal pieces on acrylic at the entry points. Pero Design is choosing lots of blue skin and images with good depth to help patients keep their minds engaged while the dentists make their teeth shine.

For the pediatric wing, fun pictures of exotic animals and their funky teeth should give a good giggle and help spark conversation over proper dental care. Here’s the blank canvas of the art consultant!

CenterCal Properties, LLC is a retail development leasing agent with shopping mall properties around the Northwest. Their Bridgeport Village office recently chose some super-cool historic photos of Tualatin to highlight the colorful history of their locale.

Black and white photos included the Tualatin Fire Department, farming fields, old cars, historic schools and farming equipment. These guys are an expert team of realtors and really know their stuff about leasing out retail space, but they weren’t too sure of what to do about framing and hanging their pictures in the fairly modern and very white-walled office space they have down there. Bring in Pero Design!

They decided to print the photos on canvas and gallery wrap them for a clean and simple fit to their minimalist space. This also let the subject matter of the photograph speak for itself without any influence of a frame. These pictures looked so great, we installed them on security hardware so they wouldn’t accidentally walk off with a quick-handed history buff. Yes, security is another reason to call in your art consulting expert.

If you’ve made an investment in art or photography to hang in your public space, I’m sure you’d rather not have it swiped. A professional hanger can install it for you in a way to keep it safely on your walls. The photos look great and our client and their other tenants are delighted with the way it all turned out. So delighted, Pero Design has been challenged with finding a way to artfully hang more photos in this open stairway. I’m thinking a really cool mobile could act the part of an artistic chandelier. What do you think?

There has been a fair amount of research done on the effect of art on patients as a visual experience and as a hands-on experience in the form of art therapy.

As an art consultant, I do a lot of medical clinics — from pediatrics, to oncology, to mental health, to hospitals and basic family practices. There is a science-based reason for why you see so much nature and florals on the walls of doctor’s offices. Authors Roger Ulrich and Laura Gilpin explored this topic thoroughly in their study and subsequent publication “Healing Arts: Nutrition for the Soul.” Combining scientific research and anecdotal field work, they developed art selection guidelines widely used for the healthcare industries. You can find out more about these guidelines at the Center for Health Design’s website at but the essence is that depictions of nature are calming and provoke feelings of peace and well-being in us.

The Cleveland Clinic’s own studies on patient experience with art in hospitals and clinics went further to suggest that the art should not call attention to the patient’s suffering, but rather help them to feel comfortable and soothed. In my own work, there are some obvious choices to be made for certain clinics, and some not-so-obvious things to consider and avoid. The simplest approach is often the best, and for pediatric facilities, art full of color and playfulness make the most sense. The more quirky and active, the better for helping to distract kids from whatever has brought them to the doctor, or dentist, in the first place. People who must return again and again to a clinic because of chronic suffering benefit from relaxing and soothing images that create a positive “escape” or dreamland (here comes the nature part) but consideration should be made to rotating artwork because of the repetitive nature of these visits.

I would point out Providence Cancer Center as a top example of floral and landscape choice. Photographs of aspirational imagery, e.g. emotionally positive examples of humans being active perhaps despite physical imitations are a good choice for physical therapy centers. Before and after pictures of actual patients can be artfully displayed under certain circumstances like medical spas and orthodontists.

One area that is often overlooked during planning is the exam rooms. A patient may feel relaxed in your beautifully outfitted waiting room, but if your exam room is full of medical diagrams and pictures of ailments provided by the pharmaceutical company, I would hazard a guess that heart rates are going to rise again while they wait for the doc. Take into consideration what brought your patient to the clinic to begin with, and be sensitive to their complete journey from waiting room to exam room to check-out. Some “no-nos” I have seen include too much red in a cardiovascular clinic, pictures of babies and children in a reproductive medicine office, and posters of childhood diseases in a pediatrician’s exam rooms. It’s great to think outside the box — after all, who wants to see another X-ray image of a floral? Your art consultant has the experience and research to help you identify the best fit for your clinic and your patient.

Building owners and leasing agents — your lobby is your interactive business card. It’s the first thing that people see and it sets the tone of your location and “brand.”

What kind of tenants do you want to attract? When potential residents of both the business and residential kind visit your building they are going to consider how their guests and clients will respond to the first impression they have. Is it hip and fresh? Does it inspire? Does it speak youthful creativity or sophisticated elegance? Is it cutting edge or old school northwest? No matter what your answer, neglecting to invest in the right “vibe” for your elevator lobby can send the wrong message to potential tenants and result in lower occupancy.

Here are some ideas for different spaces:

Corporate office buildings: Tailor your lobby and elevator bays to the type of tenants you want to attract. For example, use geometric and abstract art for technology tenants. Medical and mental healthcare offices: Floral or fine art works best to create a soothing and calm environment. Boutique hotels: Focus on local art or artists in travel-oriented theme.

Historic to residential conversions: Archival photographs representative of the building or neighborhood. Keep in mind that different age demographics are inclined to different imagery. Younger tenants may be more drawn to edgy and contemporary art. Yet, in the case of empty nesters who are choosing a modern high-rise condominium, the edgier art works just as well to meet their aspirations to regain some youth. An art consultant can help you to choose the correct art, and the framing style, for your space and make sure that it coordinates with the existing interior elements, including strong carpet patterns or other surface textures.

Don’t forget, your art adds to the perceived value of your building and supports your brand and leasing efforts. Stand out from your competitors and fill those spaces with prosperous tenants!