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“Times is Tough: A Guide to Enjoying Austin’s Art Scene for Free”

2009 August 27
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Mask for the Crystal Corridor by Lizzy Wetzel

Detail from "Axis Wheel" by Lizzy Wetzel

The economic recession is making times tough for all of us.  But as much as I want to save money, it’s hard giving up what I love most: checking out the latest art in town.  Luckily, Austin’s a city with more daily events than we can possibly attend.  And with galleries, museums, collaborative art spaces and arthouses all over the city offering free openings and exhibitions, anyone can find something to fit their taste.

Rachel’s posts on debt, money awareness and budgeting inspired us to find new ways to keep your hard-earned dollars in the bank while still getting your culture on.  Check out our guide to upcoming and on-going art happenings you can enjoy without spending a dime:

Austin Museums with Free Events

Austin Galleries with Free Events

  • One weekend left to catch Lizzy Wetzel‘s solo installation The Medicine Show at Women and Their Work.  Take a mini vacay by entering her “multisensory” double landscape installation.  The trip is gratis.
  • L. Nowlin Gallery is one of Austin’s new and few photography galleries.  They have a free closing reception this Saturday from 6-8pm featuring the black & white documentary style photography of the owner, Lesley Nowlin.
  • Go grassroots at Spiderhouse this Sunday with Artseen Alliance.  Homoscope, a series of short queer films, starts at 8:30pm followed by a hot dance party.  Entry is free, so you can enjoy the drink specials without breaking the bank.

Eastside Art Spaces with Free Events

    Installation by Heather Tolleson

  • Mixing a free community garden (volunteers get free produce!) and an anti-gallery workspace, Co-Lab‘s M.O. is to present a new exhibit every week.  You can catch their September 5th opening of local artist Heather Tolleson‘s installation, Imperative from 7-11pm.
  • Despite their normally limited hours (Wed & Sat 1-5pm), the non-profit pump project art complex are opening their doors this Saturday from 7-10pm for the opening of Cantanker Magazine‘s 3rd annual catalog release  titled Anxiety.  Share the unease of the times with your fellow art-goers.
  • Enjoy abstracts in the old world at the East Side Show RoomJennifer Chenoweth‘s collection of abstract oil paintings will be celebrated with a closing reception this Sunday from 6-9pm.

Do you participate in Austin’s art scene without paying an arm and a leg?  Let us know your tried and true methods in the comments!

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