Apr 24, 2024 - Things to Do

Pop-up gallery Ethereal Reflections on the rise

Two photos, one showing two people standing and smile toward the camera. The second photo shows people gathering outside a business on a sidewalk.

Left: Founders Lena Vasilenko and Emma Strgar. Right: Attendees outside the "When We Met" closing party. Photos: Ethereal Reflections

Portland's art scene can be intimidating, but Emma Strgar and Lena Vasilenko are working to change that with their pop-up gallery, Ethereal Reflections.

How it works: Strgar, owner of floral design studio Tulip Cowboy, and Vasilenko, designer and co-founder of Kozha Numbers, partner with local businesses, restaurants and bars to introduce local artists (musicians and makers of all kinds) to the community via events that feel like scoring an invite to a chic, living room party.

  • Past happenings sold out quickly. To accommodate rising popularity, Vasilenko and Strgar are looking to host "larger scale events on a more regular basis."

Flashback: Ethereal Reflections hosted its first pop-up gallery inside the Ace Hotel in January 2023.

  • Attendees gathered for limited edition cocktails from since-shuttered Pépé le Moko and mingled among installations highlighting "introspective, individualized experiences" from artists like Austin Fields and Benjamin Ewing.
  • Since then, Ethereal Reflections put on a dozen other exhibitions, including a retrospective on artificial intelligence, a murder mystery party at Frances May and several "reading with strangers" ceremonies, where attendees bring a book and listen to lo-fi beats from DJ Benjamin Bryant.

What they're saying: "Our goal above all else is to create an experience where people have a chance to connect, have fun, and explore their creativity," Strgar and Vasilenko told Axios in a joint emailed statement.

What's next: Ethereal Reflections will host another reading party at Company and a pop-up wine bar at Director Park next month. Details on their Instagram.

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