BY CHRISTY WINK / PHOTOS COURTESY OF HERRONSTOCK
Whether it’s a contemporary oil on canvas in a sleek, modern gallery or a simple yet iconic love note scrawled on the side of a building, art can be found in every corner of our daily lives in Austin. This city has always prided itself on being eclectic and diverse, and people from throughout the world have sought out Austin as a free haven of creative expression.
It’s on our bridges and walls; it’s built into our architecture and sold on our sidewalks. Some of our most famous pieces of street art might look like common graffiti at first glance, such as Jeramiah the Innocent at the corner of Guadalupe and 21st Street, a friendly, googly eyed frog asking after your well-being. Or “i love you so much” on the side of Jo’s Coffee on South Congress, which has become one of the city’s most popular Instagram walls for tourists and locals alike. But make no mistake, these murals are fiercely protected by a passionate and involved community that understands and values these contributions to our cultural capital.
Austin has no shortage of fine art, either. Public exhibitions and private collections hang in peaceful museums and galleries, while roomfuls of funky glasswork and sculptures made from everyday items are tucked carefully away in tiny antique houses-turned-galleries.
Another great way to experience this area’s art is through its numerous festivals and exhibitions throughout the year. One highlight is Art City Austin, April 12–14, 2019. Dozens of local and visiting visual artists spread themselves out over the grounds at Republic Square in the heart of downtown to sell their creations to thousands of eager art enthusiasts.
If you’re here in December, the Armadillo Christmas Bazaar is an iconic Austin original art shopping destination everyone should experience. Held during the twelve days leading up to Christmas at the Palmer Events Center, this bazaar is two events in one: part art fair and part music festival. Notable names from the Austin music scene play for your entertainment as you shop an amazing array of handmade items from local and visiting artists and artisans.
In the heart of downtown, 6th Street is shut down for two weekends a year for the Old Pecan Street Arts Festival, a tradition for more than 30 years. (In 2019, the festival weekends are May 4–5 and September 21–22.) Visitors can indulge in a wide variety of art, crafts, food, live music and street shows.
It should come as no surprise that an offbeat and vibrant place such as Austin has such an active art scene. Our art, like our music, is part of our soul.
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Dr. Seuss Artwork Calls Austin Home
The Art of Dr. Seuss, housed at ART ON 5TH, is the exclusive, authorized collection of limited edition artworks adapted and reproduced from Theodor Seuss Geisel’s original drawings, paintings and sculptures.
This historic collection has traveled to museums and galleries across three continents since its inception in 1997, with works from The Art of Dr. Seuss now hanging in collections alongside the likes of Picasso, Chagall, Warhol and other 20th century masters.
Ted Geisel (aka Dr. Seuss) asked his wife, Audrey, to wait until he was gone before bringing these works to the public. Secretly, he wanted to be recognized as a serious artist, but publicly, he was quick to describe his private works as “Midnight Paintings.”
Despite incredible demands,
original Dr. Seuss artworks rarely, if ever,
become available for sale…
Despite incredible demand, original Dr. Seuss artworks rarely, if ever, become available for sale. Indeed, the vast majority of original Dr. Seuss artworks are held among the following three collections and are not available for sale: The Dr. Seuss Estate, the Dr. Seuss Archives at the Mandeville Special Collections Library (University of California, San Diego), and the Lyndon Baines Johnson Presidential Library in Austin. This endows The Art of Dr. Seuss Collection as the closest manifestation to the original work itself.
Ted Geisel created all of the original works from which these limited editions have been adapted, beginning with some of his earliest works dating back to 1927. To accomplish the excellence and consistency intended for a collection of this stature, highly skilled artisans and ateliers have been commissioned to closely reproduce Dr. Seuss’s artwork through the use of both cutting edge technology and time honored fine art techniques recognized and embraced by leading artists, galleries, collectors, curators and museums.
Amazingly, despite the unprecedented demand during his lifetime, no limited edition pieces were ever conceived, authorized or created until this historic project began in 1997, six years after Geisel’s death. That year, Audrey Geisel commissioned this exclusive project and put into motion a series of artworks and exhibitions that would carry out her promise to Ted, while firmly establishing him as one of the most iconic talents of the 20th century.
Each work in the collection bears a posthumously printed or engraved Dr. Seuss signature, identifying the work as an authorized limited edition commissioned by the Dr. Seuss Estate. Works conceived and published after an artist’s lifetime in this manner are often referred to as Estate or Posthumous Editions. Each work is accompanied by a comprehensive Certificate of Authenticity giving collectors pertinent information about the processes used to reproduce each work, including how it was created, when it was made, and the limits of the edition. A sample of each certificate can be provided for your review prior to making an acquisition.