ArtCrawl Houston is back Saturday, November 19, 2022, from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Events are free and open to the public. 

The hub of all events is at John Runnels and Charlie Jean Sartwelle’s Mother Dog Studios, founded in 1984, in the original artists’ warehouse district (North of Downtown between San Jacinto, Interstate 10 and McKee Street) at 720 Walnut Street, Houston, TX 77002. Street parking is available across the studios at Platinum Parking 1016 N. San Jacinto. 

ArtCrawl Houston is the original art crawl in the old warehouse district just north of downtown. The self guided tour through the century old buildings, mixed with warehouses and modern apartment buildings seem to tell the story of Houston itself.

Think of the area as a gentrifying old west town, where artists originally settled in the unwanted outskirts of town to create. I like the statement sent out in a press release; “Time tested artistic survivors of floods, gentrification, and pandemics for thirty years. This small cluster of Artist warehouses, galleries & businesses of this hidden pART of Houston downtown will open their doors for their annual one day only event of working artist studios, exhibition spaces, galleries & local businesses.  ArtCrawl Houston takes place in the original, historical, oldest surviving warehouse district in Houston.” 

Mother Dog Studios is also hosting an art exhibit titled “What if?” I asked proprietor and curator of the exhibit, John Runnels, what is “What if?” all about?

“The artist Man Ray (American artist and photographer) wrote: “I prefer inspiration to information.”  This is one of the ideas that started me coalescing about certain Houston Artists,” Runnels wrote. “Artists that had a tautological ART practice, i.e., saying the same thing over & over again but differently each time. Their consistent & persistent use of the same materials/media/medium along with a consistent ART practice making process, galvanized into the concept of ``there is a point when: quantity equals quality.”

“The ten Artists in the “What IF?” exhibition exemplify this concept,” Runnels said. “When presented in this format, Quantity reinforces the Quality as a singular sensation. Whether it is Gestalt psychology or Aristotle, we know it as; ``The whole is greater than the sum of its parts!” 

The artists participating and their mediums include, Trina McIsaac - polychrome acrylic paintings, Jim Hatchette  -  dirt paintings, Charlie Jean Sartwelle - repurposed quilts, Patrick Medrano - paintings & sculptures, Jeff Reese- black light paintings, Molly Koehn - fiber fabrics, Ken Mazzu - demolition paintings, Ginger Davis - pin - hole photographs, and Henry Clark - optical illusion photographs.  

Additional spaces participating in ArtCrawl Houston are Bisong Art Gallery, Hardy & Nance Studios and the sponsors are Clay Crawford, Faded Decade, m ARCHITECTS, NDT Seals, Platinum Parking, Studio 713, and The Suite Life. 

For details and to see a map of participant and sponsor locations visit http://artcrawlhouston.com/.

Big Walls Big Dreams “All City” Mural Festival 2022 is wrapping up this weekend with a closing event Saturday (with Secret Walls) at Silver St. Studios East Gallery, 2000 Edwards St. at 7 p.m.

UP Art Studio is celebrating their 10 Year Anniversary by producing, creating and curating Big Walls Big Dreams, now in its second year in Houston. The event exploded from 20 murals in 2021 to 60 large scale murals citywide, by top local and international artists.

To take a self-guided mural tour and get details on the remaining events this weekend, locations of all mural sites, schedule of events (Sunday too), sponsor recognition, and who the artists are visit the website  http://www.bigwallsbigdreams.com

UP Art Studio is celebrating its 10 Year Anniversary with Big Walls Big Dreams “All City” Mural Festival, learn more about UP Art Studio at www.upartstudio.org.

Cohen is an artist and founder of the First Saturday Arts Market and The Market at Sawyer Yards. Find him at ArtValet.com for additional highlights and artist’s stories.

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