See how artists will light up Waller Creek this year

The Waller Creek Conservancy has announced its 2017 line-up for the light-based  “Creek Show.” Now in its fourth year, the jam of artworks employs the spacey spaces of the creek bed and banks to illuminate its potential as a destination park. The family-friendly sequence will run Nov. 10-18.

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The six planned light shows for 2017. Contributed by Waller Creek Conservancy

Here go the artists and their planned art:

“No Lifeguard on Duty” by Asakura Robinson

“Fotan Fable” by HA Architecture

“Night Garden” by dwg

“Ephemeral Suspension” by Pathos + TouchTo

“Blind Spot” by Two+ Collaborative

“Submerge” by Davey McEarthron Architecture + Studio Lumina + Drophouse

RELATED: Creek Show preview 2016.

East Austin Studio Tour: Get going, get out there

“El Capacitor” is a public installation by Michael Anthony García, a commissioned project by TEMPO, the city’s temporary public art initiative.

“El Capacitor” is in East Austin’s Metz Park and thus an official stop on this year’s East Austin Studio Tour. It is one of five TEMPO projects on the tour.

READ: A guide to the ever-expanding East Austin Studio Tour

A bright red podium forms the center of García’s installation. The podium is surrounded by flagpoles bearing flags that are stitched together from neighborhood residents’ clothing.

García is an astute and thoughtful artist whose creative and curatoral practice is rooted in timely social issues.

READ: Los Outsiders curate exhibit to spark conversation about gentrification.

The title “El Capacitor” refers to the nearby decommissioned Holly Street Power Plant, which for half a century belched toxic fumes, leaked chemicals into Lady Bird Lake and was the site of numerous oil spills and fires.

Only after considerable community and citizen action did the Holly Street Power Plant close in 2007.

However, by the mid-aughts, the surrounding neighborhood of modest houses, for generations a predominantly Latino enclave, was already witnessing significant changes as gentrification drew a new demographic — yes, including artists to the downtown-adjacent neighborhood.

For García, “El Capacitor” is symbol of the community’s potential energy — a symbolic space created to inspire the neighborhood’s longtime residents to amplify their voice.

“El Capacitor” can also be read as a summons for everyone to get out there and talk to each other in a civic space. Its bright podium offers a dignified platform for all voices. And its circle of flags frames a demand for all of us to listen to each other.

el-capacitor
“El Capacitor” by Michael Anthony García. Photo courtesy of the artist.

 

What to see at EAST: These artist warehouses and co-working spaces are home to many

What to see at EAST: A map to the artist hives

Oh, we know.

Sometimes it’s hard to know where to start on the East Austin Studio Tour.

This year’s tour catalog lists 534 sights and events, the most in EAST’s 15 editions.

The East Austin Studio Tour group exhibition is on view in shipping containers at Canopy, 916 Springdale Road.

The East Austin Studio Tour group exhibition is on view in shipping containers at Canopy, 916 Springdale Road. Photo courtesy Big Medium.

READ: A guide to the ever-expanding East Austin Studio Tour

READ: What to see at EAST: 13 women artists

If the sheer number of tour stops overwhelms you, one strategy is to start with the warehouses or other co-working spaces that have multiple studios and galleries.

And we’ve got a map for that:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Creek Show preview: First peek at illuminated installations coming to Waller Creek

The Waller Creek Conservancy’s popular “Creek Show” is coming to downtown Austin in just a few weeks.

And today, the organizers have released renderings of the five illuminated site-specific temporary installations that will light up four blocks of Waller Creek from 6 to 10 p.m. Nov. 10-19.

The free happening is a means for the conservancy — a nonprofit partner helping the city shape the transformation of 1.5 miles of downtown creekside —  to bring the public’s attention to the overlooked subterranean stretch of Waller Creek.

The opening night party starts at 6 p.m. Nov. 10; there will be a DJ creekside and drink specials available at creek-adjacent bars including Easy Tiger, the Gatsby, Waller Creek Pub House and more.

And on Nov. 15, I will be moderating an artists’ talk at 6:30 p.m. at the Palm Door on Sabine during which I’ll get the Creek Show designers to open up about their creative process, the challenge of working with an ephemeral artistic medium such as light and the uniqueness of designing something for a singular spot in the urban landscape.

In the meantime, here’s a quick look at renderings of the five temporary projects:

Jules Buck Jones is making a 40-foot sculpture of an extinct sea lizard called a Mosasaur that 65 million years ago swam through the shallow sea that covered Central Texas. UT geology students found an almost complete skeleton of a Mosasaur in Onion Creek in 1935, and it’s now on exhibit at the Texas Memorial Museum. Jones’ sculpture will be under the East Eighth Street bridge.

E 8th Street Bridge over Waller Creek
Jules Buck Jones illuminated sculpture of a Mosasaur,

 

• “Nimbus Cloud,” by Dharmesh Patel and Autumn Ewalt, is a raincloud-shaped sculpture with programmable LEDs that will change in pattern and light, the water below reflecting the ephemeral display.

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• The team of East Side Collective and Drophouse Design (Tim Derrington, Wilson Hanks and Christian Klein) conceived of “Deep Curiosity,” a partially submerged enormous illuminated circular form dipped into the murky nighttime creek water just on the south side of the East Sixth Street bridge near the Easy Tiger terrace.

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“Deep Curiosity” is near Easy Tiger.

 

Kory Bieg’s “The Creek Zipper” is an undulating stretch of milled aluminum forms — some stretched over the water — that will extend the length of the creek between the East Sixth Street bridge ending near the Seventh Street bridge.

"The Creek Zipper"
“The Creek Zipper”

“Phantom Diversion,” by Alisa West and Travis Cook, will draw attention to the stretch of large, above-grade diversion pipes that will someday be replaced when the intake station (part of the Waller Creek flood control project) is up and functional. In the meantime, West and Cook will give us a double helix of lovely light.

"Phanton Diversion"
“Phanton Diversion”

 

Blue Genie Art Bazaar moves to new location

The popular holiday season art shopping happening is moving to a new location this year.

Blue Genie Art Bazaar is shifting locations not far from when its been the last few years.

This year it’s at 6100 Airport Blvd. in a big warehouse right across the street from ACC’s Highland Campus. See a map here: https://goo.gl/maps/YczxZDZUuxy

More than 200 regional artists, makers and artisans display their creations.

Blue Genie is a super chill shopping experience with free admission and parking, a centralized checkout, refreshments and a cash bar. It’s open 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. for four weeks, Nov. 24-Dec. 24.  The fair also supports the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

The event was founded in 2001 by the principals of Blue Genie Art Industries — Austin Arts Hall of Fame members Chris Coakley, Kevin Collins, Rory Skagen and Dana Younger.

bluegenieartbazaar.com

Blue Genie Art Bazaar
Blue Genie Art Bazaar

East Austin Studio Tour artists announced

This year’s East Austin Studio Tour artist have just been announced!  Austin’s free, annual tour or artist studios happens over two weekends: Nov. 12-13 and Nov. 19-20.

See the entire list of several hundred artists here: http://east.bigmedium.org/participants.html.

Yes, it’s daunting trying to triangulate where to go. Maps and catalogs will likely be due in early Nov. (though tour organizers Big Medium have traditionally been kinda last minute in publishing both).

The warehouses complexes or other co-working spaces that serve as home to multiple studios and galleries are always place to start. Use our map and guide to the recommended studio complexes  to find a starting place.

And here’s some of what went down at last year’s EAST.

"Lost in Austin" by Federico Archuleta, one of the artists on this year's East Austin Studio Tour.
“Lost in Austin” by Federico Archuleta, one of the artists on this year’s East Austin Studio Tour.

 

Nine days left for free admission to Umlauf Sculpture Garden

Thanks to its fundraising efforts during the citywide Amplify Austin campaign, the Umlauf Sculpture Garden & Museum is offering free admission — but just through Aug. 31.

Next to Zilker Park, the museum’s six-acre grounds and exhibit pavilion have dozens of sculptures made by Charles Umlauf, the late modernist artist and University of Texas art professor

For a special exhibit, Umlauf museum curators have re-created the artist’s studio in the museum gallery:, “Studio in the Museum: An Interactive Recreation of Charles Umlauf’s Studio”

Museum hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday-Friday, noon to 4 p.m. Saturday-Sunday
Umlauf Sculpture Garden & Museum, 605 Robert E. Lee Road
umlaufsculpture.org

And check out the Austin360 interactive map of arts and culture museums.

 

Lotus, 1960, bronze Among the most popular sculptures in the Garden, Lotus (the Egyptian goddess of fertility) was modeled after a hippopotamus in the San Antonio Zoo.
“Lotus,” 1960, bronze
Among the most popular sculptures in the Umlauf Garden, Lotus (the Egyptian goddess of fertility) was modeled after a hippopotamus in the San Antonio Zoo.

Choose your own interactive tour of Austin’s arts scene

We know. There’s lots to do in Austin. And whether you’re new to town or have been here for years, Austin’s ever-exploding arts scene can sometimes overwhelm.

Not to worry. We’ve got it all laid out for you to peruse with several interactive, easy-to-use map guides that will get you out and seeing things.

 

Print Austin fest at the Canopy arts complex
Print Austin fest at the Canopy arts complex in East Austin

 

 

 

Co-Lab Projects occupies vacant Congress Ave. space for exhibits

For all the hand-wringing over risings rents and increasing shortage of suitable space for artists and arts groups, one tiny non-profit visual arts organization is taking advantage of the changing landscape.

For the next year-ish, Co-Lab Projects will operate Demo Gallery at 721 Congress Avenue a long-empty retail space right next to to the historic Paramount and State theaters.

Photo by Jeanne Claire van Ryzin
“Youngsons: Live Free With Guys” at Co-Lab Projects’ Demo Gallery. Photo by Jeanne Claire van Ryzin.

After sitting empty for nearly two decades  — an eyesore on Austin’s prominent avenue — the shell of a building is now slated to be “car-free” apartment tower, designed by Austin architect Brad Nelsen.

While that project gets going, the developers have let Co-Lab have the rather raw high-ceilinged space for a longish-term pop-up gallery.

Opening its doors with the recent West Austin Studio Tour, Co-Lab kicked off with “Youngsons: Live Free With Guys,” featuring the lively, vibrant collaborative paintings of Drew Liverman and Michael Ricioppo.

 

 

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“Youngsons: Live Free With Guys” at Co-Lab Projects’ Demo Gallery. Photo by Jeanne Claire van Ryzin.

“Youngsons” runs through June 24. Opening July 2 is “Room With A View,” a solo exhibit by Adam Crosson who creates intriguing, thoughtful installations.

Gallery hours are 12 noon to 6 p.m. Thursdays-Saturdays.

"Youngsons: Live Free With Guys" at Co-Lab Projects' Demo Gallery. Photo by Jeanne Claire van Ryzin.
“Youngsons: Live Free With Guys” at Co-Lab Projects’ Demo Gallery. Photo by Jeanne Claire van Ryzin.

Co-Lab has been footloose for a while after leaving the East Austin location it had for several years where organizers kept producing a steady stream of exhibits and happenings.

The artist-run group has always been skilled when it comes to the pop-up, staking out art exhibits in all kinds of venues.

Nimbleness proved a good strategy for this smaller arts organization in Austin’s rapidly changing and ever pricier urban landscape.

Mural on the Eighth Street side of 721 Congress Ave. where Co-Lab Projects is operating a pop-up gallery for the next year. Photo by Jeanne Claire van Ryzin.
Mural on the Eighth Street side of 721 Congress Ave. where Co-Lab Projects is operating a pop-up gallery for the next year. Photo by Jeanne Claire van Ryzin.

Austin Shakespeare’s free “Macbeth” runs all May

For 32 years, April showers bring Austin free Shakespeare in the park for the month of May.

And so Austin Shakespeare continues the decades-long tradition of presenting a show in Zilker Park.

A new production of “Macbeth” has a modern military look — along with plenty of sword fights, ghosts and eerie aparitions and odd, creepy witches.

The show features two of Austin’s most regarded classical actors: Marc Pouhé reprises his acclaimed 2008 portrayal of Macbeth and Helen Merino stars as Lady Macbeth.

Marc Pouhé and Helen Merino 1 Austin Shakespeare's Macbeth Photo by Bret Brookshire
Marc Pouhé and Helen Merino star in Austin Shakespeare’s “Macbeth.” Photo by Bret Brookshire

Shows are 8 p.m. Thursday-Sunday through May 29.

Picnics are welcome and bring a blanket to sit on. Dogs must be kept on a leash. Glass containers are not allowed and smoking is definitely not allowed in the park.

The Beverly S. Sheffield Zilker Hillside Theatre is directly across the drive from Barton Springs Pool in Zilker Park. Free. Go to austinshakespeare.org for more info.

 

 

Ghostly apparitions in "Macbeth."
Ghostly apparitions in “Macbeth.” Photo by Bret Brookshire.

 

Witches - Hannah Rose Barfoot, Crystal Bird Caviel, Jessica Hughes Austin Shakespeare's Macbeth Photo by Bret Brookshire
Hannah Rose Barfoot, Crystal Bird Caviel and Jessica Hughes play the witches in Austin Shakespeare’s “Macbeth.” Photo by Bret Brookshire