8 energizing exhibits to awaken the senses in Austin this March
State of the Arts
Spring forward this month and get energized by exploring these eight exhibits across Austin and beyond. From capturing the absence of sound through painting at the ICOSA Collective with “Silence,” to being inspired by the bold colors of Old Havana architecture in Diana Greenberg’s exhibit at Wally Workman, there’s a lot to awaken the senses. Be charmed by Sarah Bork’s playful photography of drag performers grocery shopping, or take in three Texas artists examination of objects in our everyday lives in “discards vessels fragments” at Cameba Gallery. With an artful spring in your step and an ebullient spirit, you’ll be ready to enjoy March.
“ Silence: Shawn Camp & Sarah Hirneisen” — March 3 through April 1
“Silence” explores the absence of sound where there was sound before. Both Shawn Camp and Sarah Hirneisen use their mediums to make quiet gestures and examine surface quality and texture, with subtle use of color. In Camp’s recent work, ambiguous spatial relationships arise from simple geometric imagery embedded into thickly applied oil paint and reminiscent of landscapes buried under a fresh blanket of snow. Hirneisen is exploring the idea of remnants and looks to transitions that happen in nature when triggered by environmental stressors. She uses the process of casting to freeze a moment in time and pause the process of deterioration.
The Contemporary, Jones Center
“Host: Celeste” — March 3 through August 20
Celeste is an artist duo based in Mexico City formed by María Fernanda Camarena and Gabriel Rosas Alemán. The artists’ collaborative practice centers on explorations of archetypal images and the creation of spaces that are both physical and social. In “Host,” Celeste presents a new textile-abstracted landscape painting, created specifically for the space, as well as two new wall-mounted copper sculptures. The artists take inspiration from the vital history of murals in their hometown of Mexico City, including how these murals have functioned to shape public space and communicate through images. Inspired by narrative therapy, which holds that the stories we tell shape the worlds we inhabit, the artists invite visitors to tell their own stories through the work’s evocative yet open-ended images. The exhibition is conceived as an environment that visitors may enter and activate.
“Diana Greenberg: Solo Show” — March 4 through 26
The work in this show by Austin artist Diana Greenberg is influenced by Old Havana’s architecture and color, and specifically, the juxtaposition and boldness of color families within a series of neighboring buildings. Of Cuban heritage, Greenberg is intrinsically inspired to explore the visual sense of living there. While working on the small oil and mixed media works for this show, Greenberg was also influenced by Ikebana, or Japanese flower arranging, and the sculptural quality of the arrangements.
“At the Hour” — March 4 through April 3
In “At the Hour,” Forrest Aderholt and El Gonzalez use experiences from their upbringings to investigate how “our indoctrination into massive power structures,” as Aderholt puts it, is rooted in the home and other formative private spaces. Both revisit memories from the past that intertwine with imbalances of power and trauma. Gonzalez does this through material and metaphor, while Aderholt directly repurposes familiar imagery from pop culture, capitalist messaging, biblical allegory, and myth. From two different points of view, these artists are exploring how complex social structures impact us all on a personal level and how the domestic sphere reinforces the sociopolitical.
Dougherty Arts Center
“Sarah Bork: Girls Gotta Eat” — March 4 through April 15
In this series of vibrant cinematic portraits of drag performers grocery shopping viewers are invited to explore “how other is us.” Through Sarah Bork’s playful lens, the grocery store becomes a kaleidoscopic playground of comfort and self-care. These character portraits are paired with handwritten grocery lists and extensive interviews, exploring a nuanced spectrum of identity and experience beyond the traditional gender binary.
“discards vessels fragments” — March 4 through April 15
This exhibit brings together recent work by Texas artists Jason Webb, Benjamin McVey, and Rebecca Rothfus Harrell, examining objects in our everyday lives. Webb spends his Sundays driving through unfamiliar Austin neighborhoods photographing once private possessions, now publicly disowned. San Antonio-based McVey’s new series of paintings of vessels represents the artist’s search for quiet space, simplicity, focus, and purpose in today’s increasingly complex post-pandemic world. And Austin’s Rothfus Harrell documents states of flux across the country — remnants of structures that have a history but no longer serve their intended purpose.
“Sketches for Three Voices” — March 5 through April 16
“Sketches for Three Voices” is an exhibition of new work by artist Francesca Fuchs and a writing collaboration with the artist, poet Joanna Klink, and curator Annette DiMeo Carlozzi. In Fuchs' new paintings and sculptures, female subjects echo and iterate, their imagined arenas ranging from the indeterminate to the fantastic, from domesticity to revolution. The exhibition offers generous suggestions for potential narratives and challenges the collaborators to find new language. Together, they explore Fuchs’ luminous works and the interior and exterior worlds they conjure.
Women & Their Work
“Lindy Chambers” — March 25 through May 11
Lindy Chambers transforms the often-overlooked aspects of life to discover an otherwise unseen beauty in the ordinary — in mobile homes, stray dogs, and piles of trash. Chambers says in an artist statement that her work "is inspired by things that l travel by daily. Well maintained lots and acreage yield to plethoras of trash and abandoned vehicles. This is the subject matter l am most drawn to paint.” Her current work is comprised of oil on canvas and board. Chambers says she tries not to use the same color twice: “This forces me to use colors in a different way. The juxtaposition of colors, intensity, and values speak to me. l use what l need.”