Doll Gardner Art Gallery


For over 40 years, the Doll (Delores) Gardner Gallery ( in SW Portland has exhibited work of a wide range of artists, from the celebrated to the emerging.

The gallery is open to the public and is located in the sanctuary of the West Hills Unitarian Universalist Fellowship in a beautiful forested setting at 8470 S.W. Oleson Road, Portland, OR 97223. Usually art openings are held on the first Sunday of each month (please check our calendar for confirmation).  WHUUF hosts an opening reception for the artist, and the public is invited to join us in celebrating the artist(s) and their work.

Gallery hours are Sundays between services and from 12:15 - 1:15, and by appointment weekdays. Please call our office at 503/246-3351 Ext. 4 and let us know when you would like to visit.

If you would like to purchase work from the current show, please contact the gallery at 503/246-3351. If you are an artist interested in showing in our gallery, please contact the Director at

For a sneak peek at some of the art on exhibit this month, click on the link or image in the Art Gallery block on the right side of the page.

Selected images of artwork are also available for upcoming and previous shows:







Sunjae Lee

This show opens on November 2.


NOTE:  Our art opening has been postponed from the first Sunday of the month to Sunday Oct. 19th tfrom 12:30-2pm to coincide with the airing of a special segment on OPB's Oregon Art Beat on Oct. 16th about the artist and What We Carried. 
The US is a nation of immigrants - except for Native Americans, we are all from somewhere else.  All of us have stories about how our ancestors came to America, bringing with them cherished items, some coming with families, some leaving their home and families never to be seen again.  But what would you take if your exodus was immediate?
Photographer Jim Lommasson ventured into the Portland Metro area to visit Iraqi immigrants and ask the question "When you had to flee your country, what did you choose to take with you? He then photographed the items on a white background after which he returned and asked them to write on the prints, putting into context their stories of family, of memories, of freedom, of displacement and resilience. 
As Unitarian Universalists, we welcome dialog on issues of social justice and the worth and dignity of all people.  The public is invited to come and share refreshments and hear the artist and immigrants talk about their experiences with this project, and their new homes in Oregon.


Directors notes:
Often times, the word “tapestry” brings up visions of renaissance castles, coats of arms, hunting scenes, and maybe unicorn or two.  Used since at least Hellenic times, tapestries have been found that date back to the 3rd century B.C. 
Woven on vertical or floor looms, a tapestry consists of two sets of threads; the “warp” or vertical threads stay tight on the loom forming the crosswise threads.  Think of them as being like the length of anything: a fun movie, an enjoyable kiss, or the length of one’s life. Interlaced with the warp threads, the horizontal or “weft” threads run back and forth, sometimes running across all and sometimes just part of the warp threads and then back again.  Tapestries differ from regular over-and-under weaving in that tapestry is weft-face weaving, that is to say that all the warp threads are hidden in the finished work.
In that way, think of a tapestry as being a metaphor for life: we as creators build a story of our own design, unique to our vision, with color and texture, stops and starts.  What ties it all together is hidden from view.
In 1970, singer-songwriter Carol King wrote a song called “Tapestry” that goes:
                        "My life has been a tapestry of rich and royal hue
                         An ever changing vision
                         Of an ever changing view…” 
These eight contemporary textile artists bring to us new stories in old ways.  Textiles are warm and tactile, and remind us of home. As we return for the start of our new Unitarian year, may you be warmed with the spirit of Home in these works of structure and beauty.         – Karen Van Hoy, gallery director
Come meet the artists at this month's art opening
Sunday Sept. 7th from 11:30-2pm in the gallery.


Director's Notes:
Since 1970 the Doll Gardner Gallery has hosted hundreds of shows, celebrating the joys and benefits that art brings to our lives.  During this time of Summer leisure, we take time to look back at the history of our special gallery and its founder, Doll (Delores) Gardner. 
The gallery emerged from a large annual art fair event that Doll started in the 1960's.  From that success, Doll convinced the WHUUF board that it was a good idea to have art on our sanctuary walls on a monthly rotation.  Doll, herself a poet, was married to artist Byron Gardner, and they were quite active in the newly burgeoning art world of Portland at the time.  In 1970 the gallery opened with it’s first show:  drawings and woodcuts from (now) internationally famous artist Manuel Izquierdo.  We are lucky to have one of those pieces in this month’s show, as well as some (Starburst” by Sylvia Miller) that was purchased at one of the preceding art fairs.
Doll was a tireless supporter of local artists, and I like to think that she’d be happy with what the gallery has become.  Most don’t know, but we are the oldest continuous gallery in the city of Portland.
One story about Doll is that if she knew someone was going on vacation out of the country, she told them they had to send her a postcard, which she kept in a collection. I hope that, like those postcards, somehow you too can be transported by these works away from the everyday world to new places of interest.
Every picture has a story. Seek out the owners at coffee hour and start a conversation!
Special thanks to all those members who shared these works with us. Note: No artist’s reception this month.  Please join us for an artist’s reception for our September show