Jay Shinn: Air Space
Barry Whistler Gallery
315 Cole St., Suite 120
6 to 8 p.m. Friday
If you know what a decahedron is, you are probably either A) a high school geometry teacher or B) the artist Jay Shinn. Shinn uses the 10-faced, three-dimensional wooden shapes as canvasses for Air Space, his inaugural solo exhibition with Barry Whistler Gallery. The collection pairs new painted works with an original wall installation combining neon and projected light.
The Magnolia, Arkansas, native’s artistic repertoire consistently explores what he calls “minimal geometric abstraction,” most recently via the use of slightly altered light to create illusions. Some of his works are monochromatic and simple (see 2015’s “Circus”); others explode with emotion and color (see “Celestial Candyland,” his kaleidoscopic, easter egg-hued banner currently on display at Houston Intercontinental Airport). Expect more of the same from Air Space, which promises a liberal amount of neon. It’s literal eye candy.
Fleeting: Autumn Woods and Flowing Waters by Lillian Garcia-Roig
Valley House Gallery and Sculpture Garden
6616 Spring Valley Road
5:30 p.m. Saturday
While the subtitle of Lillian Garcia-Roig’s Fleeting may conjure images of public access television and Bob Ross, her robust watercolors will make you want to go camping. Her nature-inspired exhibit at Valley House, the oldest modern art gallery in Dallas, features a series of new works with the stunning Skykomish region of the Cascade Mountains as the setting. A native of Havana, Cuba, Houston-bred Garcia-Roig lives in Tallahassee where she’s a professor at Florida State, but previously lived in Austin for nine years. She’s the recipient of too many awards to list, chief among them a Joan Mitchell Foundation Award and the Arch and Anne Giles Kimbrough Fund Award from the Dallas Museum of Art.
Sightings: Michael Dean (pictured at top)
Nasher Sculpture Center
2001 Flora St.
2 to 4 p.m. Saturday
How we communicate through our bodies and through language is especially relevant now, when expressions of identity — personal, political and global — are so much a part of the cultural narrative. Sculptor Michael Dean will kick off his exhibition “Sightings” with a presentation at Nasher Sculpture Center. Dean’s works bridge the gap between the murky areas of expression and understanding, co-mingling the two. With motifs including language, writing and the struggle to communicate across media, including sculpture, photography, poetry and publications, Dean considers what it means to have access to real ideas, things and each other. Using materials like concrete and plastic bags, his sculptures often resemble letters of the alphabet, human figures or parts of the body.
Savage Impressions 2
1230 W. Davis St.
1 to 7 p.m. Sunday
The organizers behind Savage Impressions 2 describe the exhibition as an anti-art art festival with no corporate backing and no restrictions. Their only agenda is to create a disturbance in your mind. Basically, anarchy.
What you can expect according to the website:
unconventional aural episodes
lurid sonic dynamics
What not to expect according to the website:
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As if the absence of shellacked gourds wasn't incentive enough, there will also be performances by artists including Sweatloaf (they advise you to arrive early), The Amazing Hancock Brothers, Professor R. Mutt and His Duchampaphones, They Say the Wind Made Them Crazy, The Mercury Rocket, Inferno Texino, Opalina Salas, Vic Victory and Carlos Salas.
James Drake: Flocking Shoaling Swarming (Blue Kiss)
Ongoing through Dec. 23
Holly Johnson Gallery
1845 Levee St.
11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday
With Flocking Shoaling Swarming (Blue Kiss), Santa Fe-based artist James Drake proves that one really can find beauty in unexpected places. Specifically, junk mail. The nine works in the exhibition are collages of mail (the snail variety) on which he’s drawn, printed and scribbled. Then he mounts everything onto archival paper. The final products are abstract mishmashes, fascinating regardless of whether taken in up close or far away.
The collection is a manifestation of Drake’s evolving relationship with the idea of mail as a communication tool. Born in Lubbock in 1946, Drake recognizes that it’s now becoming obsolete. Perhaps, for him, therein lies the appeal. “Mail will probably be a thing of the past eventually, but when I grew up it was this ubiquitous thing … whether it was bills, ads, letters,” he said to the gallery. “I like the idea that it’s general and specific at the same time.”