Art in Austin

Posted by on Tuesday, April 5th, 2016 at 1:19pm.

 art gallery

The city of Austin is home to a thriving arts and culture scene, with close on 40 galleries and art museums, regular exhibits, and many popular art events, including the Texas Biennial and Art City Austin.

Austin art galleries

Wally Workman Gallery is one of the most popular Austin galleries. This contemporary gallery is housed in a historic home, with two floors of exhibition space showcasing the work of over 50 established and emerging artists.

Gallery Black Lagoon exhibits work from over 250 artists. Most of the artwork on display is contemporary art, with strong photography exhibitions.

GrayDUCK Gallery exhibits work by both new and established contemporary artists. The gallery also regularly hosts poetry readings, film screenings, and music performances, as well as a monthly show to celebrate the work of exceptional artists.

Yard Dog is another of the most frequented Austin galleries. Yard Dog displays work by unconventional artists from the United States and Canada, including art by many prominent musicians.

The HOPE Outdoor Gallery is an abandoned area that has been transformed into a community mural. The HOPE “gallery” is three stories high, making it one of the largest outdoor galleries in the country.

Austin art museums

The Blanton Museum of Art has a permanent collection of 17,000 individual artworks – the largest collection of art in Central Texas. Artwork on display includes both modern and contemporary American and Latin American art.

university of austin

The Contemporary Austin is the primary community art museum in the city of Austin. Located downtown, it includes an art school and two museums – the Laguna Gloria Museum and the Jones Center.

The Laguna Gloria Museum is housed in a historic villa on the edge of Lake Austin. The indoor exhibition space includes art by both local and regional artists, and the museum gardens house an interesting collection of installations and sculptures.

The Jones Center hosts temporary exhibitions of work by contemporary artists from around the world.

The Elisabet Ney Museum showcases artwork by sculptor Elisabet Ney. Housed in the artist's former studio, it displays a permanent collection of Ney's portrait busts and memorabilia.

The Umlauf Sculpture Garden and Museum displays the largest collection of work by American sculptor, Charles Umlauf, and is one of the most visited Austin museums. The Umlauf Museum hosts over 65 events each year, with temporarily exhibits of work by many artists other than Charles Umlauf.

umlauf and sculpture museum

© Living Outside The Box

The Mexic-Arte Museum is a fine art museum in downtown Austin, renowned for its temporary exhibitions and educational programs. It's one of the best Austin museums for seeing contemporary Mexican and Latino art.

Austin art events

Art City Austin is Austin's original fine art festival. The festival, which is in its 66th year, takes place over the last weekend of April on the shores of Lady Bird Lake. Each year, Art City Austin showcases the work of over 150 inspiring local and national artists.

West Austin Studio Tour is a self-guided art event that takes place over two weekends in May. The work of 260 artists can be seen throughout 150 locations in West Austin during the Tour. Art on display includes paintings, drawings, sculptures, textile manipulation, metalwork, photography and mixed-media pieces.

west austin studio tour

© Ws Austin

Another alternative, East Austin Studio Tour is one of the best ways to see art in Austin. EAST is a self-guided art tour that takes place across two weekends in November. The event includes free entry to more than 150 exhibitions, with art by more than 500 local artists on display.

Art Bash is held annually in November. The event takes place at The Belmont, where each of the venue's rooms features a different installation or performance for audiences to engage with.

Last but not least, the Texas Biennial is an independent survey of contemporary art held in Austin every second year. Entry into the exhibition is open. The purpose of the biennial is to give all artists in the state an opportunity to have their work exhibited.

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