Galleries fluctuate with time just like hip cocktails or trendy shoes. I’ve compiled a list that is by no means comprehensive but certainly a good start. Visit different galleries as often as you can to find your favorites and broaden your mind.
Big Medium is not only behind a great studio space and gallery, but also the East Austin Studio Tour, West Austin Studio Tour and Texas Biennial. They are presently located off Airport in their original gallery space, but are steadily working on a new site, so expect a grand party and new digs in the future.
This past year, Co-Lab Projects has been full of growth. They’ve expanded in (volunteer) staff, gotten a fancy 501(c)(3) status and started to exhibit art in a downtown space. They’ve built a bar/porch in the backyard of their east 7th street space and keep improving. The east 7th location has been named Project Space and the downtown space branded N Space.
Davis Gallery and the frame shop associated with the space have been around since 1979. Davis Gallery shows local and regional painters, printmakers, sculptors and ceramicists. Bill Davis got his MFA from The University of Texas at Austin and has been doing the city the service of exhibiting artwork ever since.
Domy Books is a book store, gift store, or art store — you name it, Domy does it. This is a place where you can’t leave without adding something new to your collection. August has been a transformative month for Domy, so we’ll see how their literary readings and art shows evolve with the store.
Gallery Shoal Creek was established in 1965 and exhibits work from local to international artists. The gallery lives in a brown brick building northwest of campus. Visit their website to view their healthy list of artists.
GrayDUCK has been holding up the south-of-the-river galleries since 2010. Showing local and national artists in all mediums, GrayDUCK shows accessible and affordable artworks for collectors and first-time buyers alike.
Hi5h or Hi5h for short, opened its doors on the east side just this year. Although new, they are not untrained or unorganized. The space is small, but they did what they could and did it well. You won’t see any shortcuts in presentation here. Only three exhibitions into their programming and they’ve got people talking.
Red Space Gallery is actually an apartment gallery on the north side of Austin. Trust that a show here will be unlike anything you’ve ever seen from the exhibiting artist. As long as the artists don’t do irreparable damage, they are free do as they please. This testing ground not only aids an artist’s development but also allows viewers an inside look.
Slug Fest maintains a hefty September through December exhibition schedule. In addition to giving up a space to a gallery, they offer studio space, membership and classes in printmaking.
Tiny Park is organized by Brian Willey and myself. We’re interested in showing all mediums as well as hosting readings, screenings and tweet-a-longs. For nine months we hosted exhibits in our living room and a spare bedroom until we found a commercial space which we opening in June 2012.
UT Visual Art Center functions out of the Department of Art and Art History at The University of Texas at Austin. The space is museum-esque in quality and space, but is filled with an energy that can only come from student artists and the university environment. Operating on an academic schedule gives the staff time to plan and leaves the city wanting more all summer long.
Established in 1980, Wally Workman shows emerging and collected talent. Fifty-nine represented artists fill a beautiful two story historic house west of downtown Austin.
Women and Their Work promotes the work and career of women producing visual and performing arts. The organization educated and diverse works for more than thirty years.
Stick around for long enough and even more alternative spaces will begin to emerge from the woodwork.