Play, Gather, Adventure, Exhibit

We play as hard as we work with beach field trips, all-school breakfasts and parties, spontaneous ping pong games, monthly First Thursday art receptions, and daily afternoon tea in the print studio. Students organize exhibitions, performances, and pop-up shops.

Students huddling with hands joined together

Cauleen Smith, Asterisms, 2017, installation view. Center for Contemporary Art & Culture at Pacific Northwest College of Art (PNCA). Video projections and sculptures

Surround yourself with art and design

A student once said that what she loved about PNCA is that it is "dripping with art." Student art is installed in galleries, critique spaces, classrooms, offices, hallways, stairwells, and elevators. And our Center for Contemporary Art & Culture presents exhibitions by internationally-recognized contemporary artists including Cauleen Smith, Bruce Naumann, James Rosenquist, Wangechi Mutu, and many more. We host exhibitions and events as part of the Portland Institute for Contemporary Art's Time-Based Art (TBA) Festival. And we host events for Design Week Portland and AIGA.

We value, respect, and appreciate difference

As a learning community, we value, respect, and appreciate difference—in gender, sexual orientation, religion, race, ethnicity, national origin, disability, class, and age. We strive to create a safe and supportive environment that is enriched by variety in voices, work, and perspectives. We know that we are a better community of learners and educators when we have space for a multiplicity of worldviews and experience. Our Equity Council, open to all, meets regularly throughout the school year.

PNCA Equity Council

Pacific Northwest College of Art (PNCA) students and alumni gathered in an open wood floored area playing drums and hula hooping during a 2015 Focus Week performance.


Student Life organizes events, field trips, and workshops. And students run a range of clubs from Electronic Music Club and Wilderness Adventure to Blacksmithing Club.


Wangechi Mutu holding a lecture in the mediatheque


We host more than 700 free public events each year, bringing important lecturers, panels, projects, and exhibitions to campus.

Events Calendar

Hassan Hajjaj, Wamuhu 2015. In New Feelings at Center for Contemporary Art & Culture at PNCA


PNCA's Center for Contemporary Art & Culture presents exhibitions by internationally recognized artists on campus year-round.


Portland Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, image by Zach Savinar


Portland has long been a magnet for designers, musicians, artists, and writers. It’s a great place to live with stellar food, culture, urban parks, and both the Pacific Ocean and Mt. Hood within daytrip distance.

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Arlene Harold Schnitzer Center For Art And Design 511 Building

Campus and Facilities

PNCA is located downtown in a neighborhood that is home to most of the city’s art galleries and a concentration of design studios. PNCA’s Glass houses additional studios and fabrication labs for ceramics, wood, and metal.

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The facade of a modern building with "ARTHOUSE" sign on top, a glass front with visible indoor seating area, a small electric car parked by the curb, and a cyclist in motion passing by on a city street.

Student Housing

PNCA’s Residence Life program provides a supportive and vibrant environment that facilitates creativity and collaboration. We educate students through in-house social and academic activities as well as events that connect students to the life, culture, and arts of Portland.


Come tour PNCA today!

Come explore and experience how PNCA is dedicated to empowering students to reimagine what art and design can do in the world.