Three not-to-miss exhibits on the East Austin Studio Tour

We know — the East Austin Studio Tour is all about having the chance to delve into artists’ private work spaces.

But you’d be remiss if you didn’t check out these three shows at three of East Austin’s indie galleries.

After all, the places that offer the ballast East Austin’s visual creative community. They are the spaces that are regular address, the most publicly accessible destination for a general public that, alas, doesn’t always cotton to gallery-going even in a city that boasts of its creative profile the Austin does.

And if you need another reason, the three galleries we’re recommending — Mass, Photo Methode and O2 — always have wicked good shows.

Follow @austin360 on Instagram for live reports from the East Austin Studio Tour this weekend. Join in the conversation with the hashtag #EASTart.

“Green Zone” at Mass Gallery, 507 Calles St. massgallery.org.

Richard Mansfield, “Backfire”

Sculptors Julie Moon, from Canada, and Richard Mansfield, from Austin, both share a penchant for the absurd.

With their almost nightmarish elements and funhouse tricks of scale, Mansfield’s painted bronzes offer an updated take on the surreal.

Mass Gallery is in a warehouse complex behind the HEB on E. Seventh and Pleasant Valley Road — a complex that includes East Side Glass Studio, Sky Candy Aerial Arts, Hops & Grains tap room and Mettle bistro.

 

“Man Lives Through Plutonium Blast”  at  Photo Méthode Gallery, Flatbed Building, 2832 E. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. www.photomethode.com.

 From Peter B. Leighton's series "Man Lives Through Plutonium Blast"
From Peter B. Leighton’s series “Man Lives Through Plutonium Blast”

 

Austin’s photo scene got a sophisticated boost when Photo Méthode opened last year in the Flatbed Building.

Peter Leighton’s quirky yet eerie series of imaginary vernacular photos “Man Lives Through Plutonium Blast” toy with the idea that so many events seem to be just beyond our ability to comprehend.

Leighton appropriates the bits and pieces of discarded analog found photographs, deftly blending them together digitally to create images that are at once darkly humorous but also just a little bit disconcerting.

 

 

 

Katie Maratta at Gallery Shoal Creek, Flatbed Building, 2832 E. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. www.flatbedpress.com

Katie Maratta’ renders the vast Texas vista in miniature. Her  so-called “horizonscapes” — sketched in graphite and ink — are a mere inch tall. Some are a foot long, others up to four feet long. The expansive yet minimalist panoramas of quotidian Texas — swirling dust devils, highway signs, horses, hay bales, pump jacks, barns, farm houses, silos and endless stretches of roads and fences s– roll by in cinematic fashion. Miniature cinematic fashion, that is.

Katie Maratta, "Buy One Get One"
Katie Maratta, “Buy One Get 11”

 

 

Author: Jeanne Claire van Ryzin

Jeanne Claire van Ryzin is the arts critic for the Austin American-Statesman. She writes about visual art, theater, dance, music, performance, public art, architecture and just about any combination thereof.

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