Arts in Context

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Arts In Context connects artists with arts enthusiasts to explore creative communities and conversations associated with Austin. By spotlighting visual arts, dance, music and culture, we hope to pique curiosity and inspire people to learn more about a subject, visit an exhibition, attend a performance or create and share something beautiful of their own.

June 4: Design

Spaces that transcend mere buildings and become a thing of art. These artists focus their talents on designing many of the spaces often taken for granted. In Bluff, Utah Hank Louis is building houses with running water for those disadvantaged near the Navajo reservation. Knowing what’s important is key to Coleman Coker, a designer who didn’t receive his degree in architecture, but knows that you must understand what you’re doing. Knowing and questioning is something Peter Eisenman likes to do, feeling as though architecture opens the world through questions. Steve Badanes knows that people spend most of their time in architecture and that this has the power to shape their lives. Through aesthetic choices and details, people can be impacted, one of the reasons Jean Jacque Brisson wants to tell stories through details.

June 11: Light

Meet a group of artists who define light in different and unique ways. Linda Beaumont likes for her works to resonate the moment the light of a piece enters a viewer, be it through glass or in a constructed space. Being an artist just kind of happened out of the need to create for James Armstrong. His art is mostly compiled of rejected glass from his father’s old glass factory, and is a product of what he’s passionate about. Passion is told through a story for Chel White, and he uses this to showcase the images he captures in his filmmaking that centers around environmental stewardship. Charles Miner’s work is all about adaptation: both to accidents and to his own body’s limitations.

June 18: Metal and Rust

One man’s trash can be an artist’s treasure, and the works featured are made up of found materials either discarded or assigned for only certain purposes. Cadillac Ranch in Amarillo is a line of several old Cadillacs, all standing vertically, as half of the car is submerged underground. The cars are covered with paint, and observers can add their own decorative touch to this large scale outdoor installation. In New York the only museum done completely (designed, curated, funded, exhibited works) by a living artist is the Noguchi Museum. Its deliberately serene atmosphere allows the rare experience of enjoying art by yourself. Catherine Lee didn’t know she’d grow up to be an artist, but with some European inspiration she found herself working with essential materials and fulfilling her need to “make.” Childhood inspiration also struck Sayaka Gans, as she uses her same love for solving jigsaw puzzles to piece together beautiful works from what others might consider junk.

June 25: Woman

Art is enjoyed by all, but these pieces are strictly woman’s work. Heather Gorham got laid off from a job that left her unsatisfied and was completely overjoyed to use her newfound time to paint to her heart’s content. Lisa Portland is a painter who never picks up a brush. The visions of her of thoughts are created as paper towels and Q-tips transport the paint onto the canvas. Angelika J. Trojnarski sees beauty in the imperfections of situations. Her works showcase life’s calmer moments and more tranquil scenes. Mary Beth Shaw feels that making art is as sustaining as breathing. She quit her job and began her art that consists mainly of found photography, captions, painting. Blue Lapis Light is an aerial dance company that defies gravity and invades spaces that most never enter. They create art through with their bodies through discipline and partnership.