Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Would the scooter guy appear so calm if he realized an art van followed closely?

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Saturday, April 27, not the first time I've seen this van. I took these photos in Northeast Portland. The van has evolved quite a bit since I first saw it in July, 2007, when I was set up to try to sell some of my arts and crafts at Last Thursday up on NE Alberta. A man in clown face drove it and had a chimpanzee puppet sitting up front with him, looking out the driver's window. You can see versions of the van from 2009 in some photos at the bottom of this post. The owner has rearranged some of the accoutrement.


Here's a closer view for you. No clown face for the driver on this particular ride--I looked closely at the photo in its original size, just to check it out so I could let y'all know.

Pay close attention to the position of the hand on the back window.

Pay close attention to the position of the hand on the back window.

Pay close attention to the position of the hand on the back window. Yep, it's waving bye-bye!

Here's what I found online, by Googling Portland art car van clown, posted August 31. 2011, at Neighborhood Notes Dot Com:

  • The Never Never Van Driven by Extremo the Clown (a.k.a. Scott Campbell) 
  •  For many years, Extremo the Clown drove the most noticeable art car in the city of Portland. Extremo—the professional artist Scott Campbell—is known for wearing distinctive clown makeup, driving with performing puppets, singing karaoke, and laughing manically. “Scott has a little bit of a compulsion,” Emily Hall says, “and the compulsion is clown face.” Besides his work as Extremo the Clown, Campbell is a successful and prolific graphic artist. His primary form of artistic expression, and income, is painting advertisements in the windows of local businesses. “Anywhere you go in Portland, you’re going to see these goofy window paintings,” Hall says. “And he makes a really great, straight living off that.” Extremo the Clown maintains an active presence on YouTube, which hosts videos of his local television appearances, and has shown all types of unique art around town. Extremo’s well-known car, the MSV, no longer runs. The Never Never Van, his current work in progress, is based on the story of Peter Pan.   

These next photos were taken downtown Portland, April 25, 2009. The van had not completely become what you see in the photos above. Still interesting, though. Looks like the ladders he uses to paint ads in store windows are up on top of the van, inside that red metal rack.


The van is heading west on SW Morrison. The MAX Blue Line is heading west to Hillsboro, Oregon, a suburb of Portland.


Two more photos, taken the same day.


There's the Never Never. See in the photos that I took last Saturday, the Never Never is gone from the bumper.


One last one from April 25, 2009. I wonder if the change in adornment facing vehicles driving behind the van came about because this seems so high as to be a detriment in traffic. Maybe I'll run into him sometime and get to ask.


Melissa said...

This is quite a piece of art! I wonder what the clearance is?! I'm moving up your way this summer, btw.

Jack said...

It takes all kinds.

Randy said...

Interesting van. I like the scooter but not brave enough to drive one with our drivers here.