"Alejandra Almuelle: Locus" at Dimension Gallery

The dark physicality of these figurative sculptures brings an exquisite imposition of memories into the waking world

Alejandra Almuelle: Locus at Dimension Gallery

After creating much beautiful (and often a bit eerie) ceramic art for decades, most of which took the form of sgraffito'd pottery or intriguing fragments thereof, Alejandra Almuelle has her first solo exhibition at the new Dimension Gallery on Springdale.

We missed the inaugural show in this small and elegantly stark industrial space recently founded by Moya Khabele and Colin McIntyre, there at the eastern terminus of the industrial building that also houses the Daily Greens purveyors of fresh-pressed fruit and vegetable juice. We missed that first Dimension exhibition, a group show, and are still bummed that our schedule should crimp enjoyment that way. But we're informed that that show featured all the artists associated with the gallery, and now begins a schedule of solo exhibitions of those same talented makers – and Almuelle is the first one thus represented.

She's brought her whole family along, it seems, as the nine sculptures currently occupying Dimension are a sort of darkling clan, wrested from her subconscious, carefully wrought through clay and fired into human shape. No pottery here: The only thing functional about this "Locus" show is how clay – maybe a hundred pounds of it, as the song goes, maybe somewhat less – can function as a stand-in for humanity or for various fragments of what it means to be human.

Some of the figures in this show are adults, and some are children, and some seem a mixture of ages, all enhanced with underglazing and occasional additions of pigment. Each piece – a bust, perhaps, with odd growths flowering from the flesh; or a head-and-torso if not a full body, one arm bent toward the viewer, but also full bodies among them – is anchored atop its own wooden plinth: a preserved railroad tie attached to a wide iron base.

These sculptures of Almuelle's surround you in the gallery, backgrounded against the vertical grid of the walls' bare bricks or fronting the north window, the charcoal-hued physicality of the bodies or partial bodies an exquisite imposition of memories, of haunted interior states or dreamtime concerns brought into the waking world outside. They surround you in the gallery, in their temporary locus; and the memory of them will likely accompany you beyond – adding a new and subtle dimension, one you hadn't even realized was missing until you saw them, to the remainder of your days in this physical world.


"Alejandra Almuelle: Locus"

Dimension Gallery, 979 Springdale #99, 512/479-9941
www.dimensiongallery.org
Through April 24

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 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.

Support the Chronicle  

READ MORE
More Dimension Gallery
The Dimension Sculpture Park Is Newly Illuminated
The Dimension Sculpture Park Is Newly Illuminated
... and the darkness cannot overcome it

Wayne Alan Brenner, Dec. 18, 2020

"Colin McIntyre: Systema Praeternaturae" at Dimension Gallery
The artist's sinuous, flowing forms of nickel-plated steel are part of a reminder that in the midst of life, we are in death, etc.

Wayne Alan Brenner, Oct. 11, 2019

More Arts Reviews
Review: Austin Shakespeare's <i>A Midsummer Night’s Dream</i>
Review: Austin Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream
Less-than-magical production salvaged by a night of unexpected spontaneity

Bob Abelman, May 13, 2022

Review: Zach Theatre's <i>Somebody Loves You, Mr. Hatch</i>
Review: Zach Theatre's Somebody Loves You, Mr. Hatch
Surprisingly minimalist adaptation of beloved kids book still enchants

Bob Abelman, May 6, 2022

More by Wayne Alan Brenner
Five Ways to Dress Up Your Bare, Bare Walls
Five Ways to Dress Up Your Bare, Bare Walls
A big weekend of gallery shows gives you plenty of decorating opportunities

May 20, 2022

Argus Cidery Returns, Lou’s Comes to Barton Springs Road, Hip Hotels Hype that Hemp, Fierce Whiskers Hosts Loro, Chi’Lantro Goes South, and More
Argus Cidery Returns, Lou’s Comes to Barton Springs Road, Hip Hotels Hype that Hemp, Fierce Whiskers Hosts Loro, Chi’Lantro Goes South, and More
All the news that’s fit to get your taste buds quivering

May 18, 2022

KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Dimension Gallery, Alejandra Almuelle, Moya Khabele, Colin McIntyre

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

Behind the scenes at The Austin Chronicle

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle