20 March, 2011

Event: Blaffer Gallery and Okay Mountain

First Take: Okay Mountain at Blaffer Art Museum

I have been following the Okay Mountain Gallery/Collective since their 2006 when I visited their gallery space. The space was pocketed away on the eastside of Austin, TX. The address reads 1312 E Cesar Chavez St. Ste B Austin, Texas 78702 but it's more off Navasota st. Oh well--logistics, now artists just idly know where it is. The first exhibition I attended excited me. It was Elaine Bradford's exhibition of several deer heads hanging on the walls...their antlers branched overhead connecting to each other through a network of red crochet. You can see a image of the installation here. This isn't about Bradford's work though even though now as I write about that first exhibition--I want to talk of her works rather than Okay Mountain. It has been getting tons of press as a entity. No individual artist within the collective is seen as the best or at least I wouldn't say so, but together they create a factory of interest.

Their work as a collective has been inviting such as an exhibition they had at Creative Research Lab (the gallery space has moved into the VAC) in 2008 called, It's Gonna Be Everything. They constructed a pyramid of Lone Star beer cans. Yes Lone Star beer. You can see a article about construction here. These instances really showed me the warmth at which they were creating. Also, hearing about their show at Pulse Miami in which they created a Texas corner store from scratch.

Although these exhibitions were exciting to me, the Blaffer Gallery show was not as inviting as their previous shows. Maybe I am too used to their playful jaunts which both excited me by them and created intrigue. This felt more of a drone recreation of something they had seen somewhere else. Although this exhibition doesn't change my overall feeling towards their collective, it's not something I would tell others to go see. You can see images of it here.

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