Portland Arts & Lectures
Welcoming the world’s most celebrated writers, artists, and thinkers to speak to our community in the historic Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall.
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Since 1984, Portland Arts & Lectures has brought celebrated writers, artists, and thinkers to our community to discuss their work and the trajectory of contemporary culture, connecting readers and writers of all ages in a spirit of intellectual curiosity and engagement with events, classroom visits, and forums.
Listen to the speakers from 2020/21 on The Archive Project.
The series began on October 13 with naturalist, historian, and writer, Helen Macdonald. Her new book is the essay collection Vesper Flights. She was joined in conversation with Elena Passarello. On January 28, we welcomed classicist Madeline Miller, author of the New York Times best sellers The Song of Achilles and Circe. She was joined in conversation by Omar El Akkad. The series continued on February 18 with Ibram X. Kendi, who discussed American history, politics, and themes racial justice, as explored in his works including How to Be an Antiracist and Stamped from the Beginning. He was joined in conversation with Chabre Vickers. On April 20, we hosted United States Poet Laureate Joy Harjo, author of nine books of poetry—most recently An American Sunrise—several plays and children’s books, and a memoir, Crazy Brave. She was joined in conversation with Oregon Poet Laureate Anis Mojgani. The series will close on May 18 with novelist Yaa Gyasi, author of Homegoing and Transcendent Kindgom. She will be joined in conversation by Literary Arts’ executive director Andrew Proctor.
“By supporting readers, writers, and books, Literary Arts is doing the difficult and crucial work of building engaged communities, and for me, this is nothing short of protecting a democratic society that recognizes that you and I are deeply united by our vision of a world that is better, truer, and freer.”Min Jin Lee, 2019/20 Portland Arts & Lectures Speaker
Thank you to our 2021/22 season supporters:
A to Z Wineworks | Angeli Law Group | The Eberwein Family
Maybelle Clark Macdonald Fund | ZGF Architects
For more than three decades, Portland Arts & Lectures has presented the greatest writers and thinkers of our time. Browse past speakers by season and listen on our podcast, The Archive Project.
“I’ve had the good luck to participate in many lecture series, and Portland Arts and Lectures is the gold standard. They’ve established a virtuous cycle of literary engagement among local writers, local high schools, and an avid and vibrant reading community. The visiting writer gets to reach and interact with all three, meaningfully and efficiently.”Jennifer Egan, Portland Arts & Lectures Author
Donate to Youth Programs
We provide local high school students with tickets and transportation to our concert hall events. Make a donation to help ensure students have access to these transformative arts experiences.
We reserve seats for local community organizations at our concert hall events. Contact our box office at firstname.lastname@example.org or 503-227-2583, ext. 101 for more information about receiving free or discounted tickets.
The Archive Project
In addition to live lecture events, our Portland Arts & Lectures program connects readers and writers of all ages through classroom visits and workshops for professional writers. Events are featured on The Archive Project, our weekly radio show and podcast.