Top 10 Arts Web Sites

'Chronicle' visual arts writer Benné Rockett names her favorite Web sites of 2005

Top 10 Arts Web Sites

1) Andrew Long, a true Renaissance figure, has channeled his myriad talents into painting. The works are jewels, unearthed deliberately, spontaneously, and yet unexpectedly. Like so many other fine visual artists in our community, he exhibits his works outside of Austin.

2) Elizabeth Underwood, a native New Orleanian, has landed squarely in our laps. Her haunting photographs reveal our most lucid dreams, captivating and encircling the viewer in a web of beauty and pain.

3) Sodalitas Art Group consists of three fantastic individuals who are devoted to the collaborative process, both within their mark-making and with the East Austin arts community. You would be challenged to find nicer folks with a real talent for innovative imagery.

4) Grant Ingram, another relocated NOLA artist, is in the midst of re-establishing his videography and photography career in Austin. His Vertigo series, provocative and spellbinding, only hints at the unusual perspective he brings to his journalistic style. He has a worthy ability to capture the still life of his devastated city as well as the intact culture of Austin.

5) Holly Reed offers some of the most compelling reasons for continued exploration of Interior Mexico. She makes the trivial, whether it is the activity of preparing food or a partially opened door to a hacienda compound, so fresh and inspiring that I yearn to be her traveling companion.

6) Iron Gate Studios is located in the Saltillo arts district of East Austin. This nonprofit space, connecting with local as well as national talents, takes it all the way with each event: exhibits, workshops, lectures, screenings, and performances. And it has a community darkroom!

7) Jacqueline May's synaptic pops must make for a lively dream life. From the lyrical undercurrents of lake beds to the elegant nib of Braille text, nothing ever seems to be lost to this woman. Scratched sacred text, sweet honey smells, and political chaos are all part of her visual language.

8) Littlebird Studios' offerings of unique custom metal works include furniture, fixtures, gates, and (my favorite) panel doors. Chris Arnold seems to have mastered all types of materials and spends as much time designing as he does repurposing materials.

9) Catherine McMillan is exceptionally adept at capturing the simplicity of complex beauty. She forges a seamless relationship between the camera and the captive, be that an individual or a staged arrangement. Her photographs, commercial and personal, are always timeless.

10) Xenogia Spoken Word Collective represents at slam-down-to-the-ground, roots-shaking, drum-beating, blast-poet events that are beyond fun. You really should bring your drum when some of these cats get to jamming. And you better believe that the loud sisters are roaring when they purr a feminist phrase. Most notable is Zell Miller III, poet-performer, who took my breath away in The Evidence of Silence Broken, his one-man show at Hyde Park Theatre.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

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More by Benné Rockett
Arts Review
Double Identity: Andrew Long & Michael Long
These brothers' works reveal the fascinating strengths of nonobjective art

Aug. 15, 2008

Luke Savisky: Hands across the water
Luke Savisky: Hands across the water
Images of hands projected across Wooldridge Park illuminate our assault on and communion with the environment

Nov. 2, 2007

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