It’s January and that means it’s time to embrace those New Year’s resolutions to better nurture the curious and creative sides with more art outings in 2022. Embark on a stimulating journey and discover new collectibles from black artists on display at Blanton, contemplate intimate sculptures, surreal prints and historical places, and immerse yourself in exhibitions based on films and the power and symbolism of flowers. It’s all here to take in Austin this month.
Mexico for the Arts
“Mix ‘n’ Mash The Flowers – Life”
Now until February 6.
This group show features artwork from more than 200 local and regional artists created on panels donated by Ampersand Art Supply. This year’s theme is flowers and life, and is symbolic throughout ancient Mesoamerican thought and practice. Flowers can represent anything from beauty and creation to death and destruction. Flower offerings were placed on the statues of the gods. Flowers were an important feature of many ceremonies. Much of the ancient symbolism and some actual practices of flower arrangement and use have persisted to this day in Mexico.
Blanton Museum of Art
Collecting: The New Collectibles of Contemporary Black Artists.
Now until May 8th.
The “assembly” includes paintings, sculptures, drawings, photographs, tapestries, and large prints, all produced between 1980 and 2019. Although varied in style and subject matter, many of the works have links to the history of the South and reveal what scholar Saidia Hartmann refers to as the “afterlife.” long slavery. The exhibition’s title, “Assembly,” embraces the heterogeneity of works by black artists. Assembly includes acts of acting, resilience, reclamation, and resistance.
Wali Workman Exhibition
“PrintAustin: Jihye Lim and Laura Post”
From January 8 to 29.
In conjunction with the citywide print festival, PrintAustin and Wally Workman are showcasing work by Korean artist Jihye Lim and Texas artist Laura Post. While Lim and Post both make a surreal use of form, Post’s sculptures combine various printmaking techniques with hand-molded paper to expand the boundaries of the print medium and redefine ideas of portraiture. Mizotic Lim explores the ideas of comfort, visualizing the form that has become physical with things to entertain. Post uses her training in Chinese and East Asian Studies to integrate traditional Chinese, Japanese, and Western printing and papermaking techniques. This is the first Lim Fair in the United States.
Neil Cochran House Museum
Earth as a Person: My Journey as an Artist
January 12 – May 15.
Earth as Character: My Journey as an Artist focuses on the Wallace home, which was once a farm and owned and programmed by Klein Arts and Culture. In the privacy of this place, visitors can view the arc of the American South, from the conquest of Muskogee Creek Nation to enslavement and the rise of the cotton economy, through the liberation, Reconstruction and rise of Jim Crow, to the present time when the place’s black and white descendants came together to create a new story.
Lydia Street Gallery
“Rick Nelson, Person”
January 14 – February 24.
Ric Nelson is a self-taught artist who explores the use of multiple media and methods to tell his own story. His artist’s journey began with music and guitar, then turned to the visual arts as another inspiring source, “a way to visualize my thoughts and moods.” Nelson works in glass, acrylic, spray enamel, wood, wire, and even waxy soot “to produce physical interpretations of my ideas, which also highlight my creative process.”
“Laura Berman: Temporities”
January 15 – February 26.
Laura Crehuet Berman creates images that layer time, space, form, and color together. Inspired by the natural world, there is an emphasis on play, improvisation, and relationship dynamics in her work. Berman has created site-specific exhibitions and has exhibited her printed work in more than 125 galleries in galleries and museums across the country and abroad. With her husband, she runs Prairieside Cottage and Outpost, a family-friendly artist retreat in the Flint Hills area of Matfield Green, Kansas.
Women and their worriesK
“welcome place By Ariel Renee Jackson”
January 15 – March 3.
This film-based exhibit is the product of “thermometry,” or the collection of individual testimonials across the region. The gallery weaves interviews, research, photographs, video, animation, and sculpture to provide a poetic depiction of shared knowledge about East Austin. Artist Ariel Renee Jackson uses the weather balloon as a metaphor for collected testimonies, a cultural technique for sensing and detecting the climate of a situation or space. The craft in the Jackson Gallery lies in generations of skilful observation within black and brown communities, warning each other when social danger is near, especially when it’s not entirely visible.
Bethany Johnson: The results.
January 22 – March 6.
Reminiscent of geological formations, the intimate sculptures of the Findings offer a multi-layered meditation on deep time, the transformation of materials, and the anthropogenic landscapes of landfills, quarries and roadblocks. These works take the form of stratigraphic bases of contrasting material reminiscent of basic geological samples, landfill strata, archival stacks and material storage. Satin surfaces in the handcrafted patina of worry stones, and the modest scale denotes the intimacy of a beloved souvenir or archived natural specimen. Johnson, an Austin artist, creates heavy, mysterious and stunning sculptures that slowly reveal themselves, requiring close examination and a gradual discovery of their origins.
Visual Arts Center
“Bill Morrison: Courses and Episodes”
January 28 – March 12.
Bill Morrison is an accomplished filmmaker who saves lesser-known and forgotten histories while investigating the fragile existence of celluloid substances. His extensive cinematic sources are rare archival footage, as well as 35mm nitrate film in various states of decomposition. At Cycles & Loops, his first solo exhibition in Texas, Morrison deconstructs his films to create basic abstractions of the gallery space. The repeated episodes presented have no beginning or end; Instead, it allows the viewer to react intellectually and emotionally to the hesitant and unfettered traces of history. With these parts tangled together, Morrison demonstrates the possibilities of rebirth from the chaos of decadence.