As it turns out, the Portland, Oregon-based alternative rock band Portugal. The Man are big fans of artist Cleon Peterson. Peterson’s first museum exhibition opened at the Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA) in Denver last month, with a packed first-night event. Following the opening, Peterson stayed in Denver to participate in an artist’s talk about his work with his mentor (and well-known street artist) Shepard Fairey, an event that was also sold out. Now, Peterson’s art will once again excite Denver, but this time, as the backdrop and setting for an intimate concert on March 16 with Portugal. The Man performing. Tickets are not for sale. Instead, the MCA is offering a limited number of tickets through an Instagram giveaway. One of the giveaway rules includes submitting “an Instagram video of what living in the moment means to you.”
Peterson’s art centers on the struggle between the shadow self and the conscious self— a conceptual tactic framed by the philosophies of Carl Jung and Friedrich Nietzsche and contemporary writers like Chuck Palahnuik and Anthony Burgess. His acrylic paintings are graphic depictions of violence, self-doubt and aggression. For the MCA show, Peterson outfitted the exterior of the building with giant black-and-white vinyl stickers that fit into the same theme as his indoor work. Similar exterior murals and sticker-installations have been done in Chicago, Miami and Singapore.
Portugal. The Man gained massive popularity with their song “Feel it Still” in 2017— a song that has been streamed more than 200 million times on Spotify — though they’ve been making albums since 2006. Their sound has changed from grungy to psychedelic to poppy. Even though they flit around between genres, it feels as if their process is more about self-transformation than making a catchy song. It’s unclear why the band (or who exactly in the band) are such big fans of Peterson’s work, but it wouldn’t seem out of line to think they feel a connection with Peterson’s journey through dark times. Portugal. The Man has visited Denver a number of times and will be playing another free show the same day as the super intimate MCA one, but at 7 a.m. at Blake Street Tavern for a Kegs and Eggs. The concert will also feature AJR and StéLouse. Portugal. The Man will then be returning to Red Rocks this summer on August 8, in case you don’t get up early enough or get lucky enough to win tickets to the shows on March 16.
So how small is super intimate? How about 120 tickets? That’s how many are available, though the giveaway states that every winner will receive two tickets, so only 60 people will be chosen.
Here are the rules for the giveaway (written by the MCA):
1. Check out Portugal. the Man’s new song “Live in the Moment” to get pumped up and inspired.
2. Starting today through March 11 (11:59 p.m.), submit an Instagram video of what living in the moment means to you. Whether that means museum going, snowboarding, drinking with friends, or whatevs. You have creative freedom, all you have to do is make sure that you tag @mca_denver, @portugaltheman and @cleonpeterson and use the hashtag #liveinthemomentdenver when you post
3. Make sure you’re following @mca_denver @cleonpeterson & @portugaltheman on Instagram
4. Tag three friends on this post who you think should enter
5. Finally, click the link in our profile to sign up for email list and submit your contact info so we can contact you if you win! On Monday, March 12, we’ll select 60 winners at random who will each get 2 FREE tickets to see Portugal. the Man play at MCA Denver, March 16. Travel is not included in the prize. Submissions will be accepted between today, February 28 and March 11 (11:59 p.m.). For more details and all rules check our website or hit us up with a DM and we’ll get back to you.