Argyle Supports the Arts, Gets Cool New Labels in Return
Champagne has long associated itself with the beaux arts (and Beaux-Arts), with big-ticket names like Philippe Starck and Jeff Koons among the latest to adorn equally big-money bottles. But out West, sparkling-wine houses support the pioneering spirit of starry-eyed starving artists instead. For the second year, Oregon’s Argyle winery has partnered with the Pacific Northwest College of Art (PNCA) to provide scholarships and some wine education to three art students, getting three original art labels in return.
Culled from a pool of more than 50 candidates, the three students were “plunged” into the viticulture and winemaking processes during a visit to Argyle, program creator and marketing and sales director Chris Cullina told Unfiltered, as inspiration for their Willamette-themed pieces. The results: Student Damien Dawahare reflected on the valley’s climate and land use in a woodcutting of a Knudsen Vineyard old vine. Catherine Ross’ abstract evokes the excitement and energy during harvest that celebrates the laborers involved, while Madison Camcam created a textured oil painting to celebrate the winery’s spirit.
“Although all of our work was rooted in our experience at the Argyle facilities, we were each given freedom to produce the work that we wanted to make without limitation,” explained Camcam to Unfiltered via email.
“Starting the Art of Sparkling scholarship was a natural extension of Argyle’s long support for the arts in our local community in Portland,” said Cullina. “I didn’t expect the insight into our brand and our winegrowing community in the Willamette Valley in general that would come by simply putting trust in the hands of these remarkable young artists.” The “Art of Sparkling” box set—three brut 2014 méthode traditionelle wines—debuted Sept. 16, but if you want an original Camcam, Ross or Dawahare label, you’ll have to put in a bid soon, as only 500 cases were made.
View on Wine Spectator (scroll to middle of page)