An ambitious outdoor art exhibit called THIRST was recently installed in and around Lady Bird Lake. This temporary installation was commissioned by Women & Their Work and funded by a grant from the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation. THIRST “encourages an exchange of ideas about the impact that a scarcity of water will have on Austin, on Texas, and beyond, as well as memorializes the loss of 300 million trees that died in the recent Texas drought.”

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The Austin Wall


The Austin Wall was unveiled last week in the lobby of the new U.S. Federal Courthouse next to Republic Square Park. This abstract stained glass wall is 28-foot square and weighs 3-1/2 tons. Two lower panels feature a black-and-white negative of a Texas Hill Country landscape.

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20ft Wide

IMG_8015Bill and I visited Alley #111 today.

20ft Wide is a temporary outdoor exhibit space set up in downtown Alley #111 for this weekend only. The entrance is on 9th Street, just east of Congress Avenue. Multiple artists and architects contributed to this exhibit sponsored by Art Alliance Austin. According to the artists’ statement, “Austin’s downtown alleys remain largely unnoticed. Yet, these public spaces are in danger of being removed by super-block developments, which will alter the character and scale of the city fabric. 20ft Wide seeks to bring awareness and appreciation to this urban space, to foster discussion about the role of the alley in the city, while simultaneously generating new possibilities for its use.”

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Art City Austin: 2013

IMG_7996Art City Austin took over the area around Austin City Hall this weekend. Over 100 artists  set up tents to display their fine art and jewelry in this show sponsored by Art Alliance Austin. While many artists were from central Texas, the show also attracted participation from far-away places such as Toronto, Boston, and Seattle. The weekend weather was a bit warm, but much nicer than last year’s stormy weather.

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The Red Swing Project

Red swings are visiting our downtown neighborhood. 
The Red Swing Project is “a public art initiative in which red swings are placed in public spaces anonymously to inspire playfulness everywhere.” This unique project started in Austin back in 2007 and since then over 150 red swings have been placed in the US and India.
Two red swings were installed at Austin City Hall as part of Art City Austin a few weeks ago. One is still there, just outside Wild About Music‘s latest storefront, Austin Rocks TX (an unusual store name, but I agree with it on several levels). The other swing is now outside the Austin Children’s Museum, just across the street from our apartment. I have been surreptitiously using this swing at times when the streets are relatively deserted.
I’ll be sad when these are taken down later this month, for riding a swing is “the pleasantest thing”!

The Swing
How do you like to go up in a swing,
Up in the air so blue?
Oh, I do think it the pleasantest thing
Ever a child can do!
Up in the air and over the wall,
Till I can see so wide,
River and trees and cattle and all
Over the countryside–
Till I look down on the garden green,
Down on the roof so brown–
Up in the air I go flying again,
Up in the air and down!
Robert Louis Stevenson