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Portland’s new Glyph Café & Arts Space features a laser-burned design on the cerused white oak bar and an open layout where customers can relax or work while seated on modular Kartell Plastics System seating from Hive Modern. The pillows are made from vintage kilims and Pendleton Woolen Mills fabric.

convergence zone A new café in the Pearl is more than just another place to fuel up on caffeine—it’s a cultural hub. Written by RACHEL GALLAHER

In linguistics, “glyph” refers to an individual letter or

character that adds to the overall meaning of a word, such as the French cedilla. In archaeology, a glyph is a carved symbol, such as Egyptian hieroglyphics. In Portland, it refers to a new downtown coffee shop—Glyph Café & Arts Space—as well as the inspiration behind its design. If you look closely, you’ll see, throughout the cafe, “repeating geometric patterns that appear in many glyphs, particularly Anasazi, Mayan, and Aztec graphic forms,” says Sandra Comstock, who owns the café with her husband, Hugo



Moreno. The pair brought in Leela Brightenburg and Alissa Pulcrano of Bright Designlab to design a multifunctional, interactive space. Distinctive seating areas throughout the café accommodate different activities, from looking at art to performing on stage. Couches provide room for relaxing and a bar has extra outlets for laptops. The coffee counter is clad in an abstract, laser-burned pattern, and was kept low to encourage conversation between employees and customers. A neutral palette of whites, blacks, and grays ties the entire café together, »

GRAY No. 17