Five Gallery Shows for Your Summer Eyes

Indoor visual art brings the light, eschews the heat

Stella Alesi at Northern-Southern

Summer is a-coming in! Suggestion: Witness the most vibrant visual examples of reality – whether representational, abstract, or some amalgam thereof – culled from entire worlds of creation by artists in this sizzling urban hub. And, ahhhhh, do that within the air-conditioned comfort of Austin's many private galleries this first post-solstice weekend and beyond. Here are five recos to get you started.

Northern-Southern: &

What's that protean artist Stella Alesi been up to for the past year or so? What new areas of visual exploration has she charted in ways that compel delighted scrutiny? The answer's in this new show, in which the painter displays her latest creations alongside those of her friends Momo, Michelle Marchesseault, Evan Horn, and Michael W. Hall – all abstractionists, all with work that's rigorously free. June 25-July 24. Thu.-Sun., 2-6pm. 411 Brazos #105.

Big Medium: The Lightning Can’t Be Harnessed

Austin-based transgender artist Xavier Schipani focuses his practice on creating large painting installations that explore the boundaries of gender, body politics, sexuality, and queer identity. He continues to investigate fear and anger, masculinity as performance, and the ambiguity of what makes a man. There's little ambiguity about his visual art, though: It's big, it's striking, it's gorgeous, and it floods the walls of this Canopy-anchoring gallery with graphic power. June 25-July 30. Thu.-Sat., noon-6pm. 916 Springdale Bldg. 2 #101, 512/939-6665.

Xavier Schipani at Big Medium

Women & Their Work: One Bad Monkey

Through soft sculptures and draping foam relief tapestries, Steef Crombach examines the secret life of local icons like the Wheatsville Raptor and the Big Star Bingo Gorilla and more, exploring each character's evolution as its identity morphs over time and place. June 25-Aug. 4. Tue.-Fri., 10am-6pm; Sat., noon-6pm. Opening reception: Sat., June 25, 7-9pm. 311 E. Cesar Chavez, 512/477-1064.

ART Ahead: Mindful Motions

The creative movers and shakers of Almost Real Things celebrate the artists from their first mentorship program with this group exhibition. Featuring new work by Cryptic Enigma, Hailey Gearo, Felipe Gomez, Brittnee Lavender, Rhea Pirani, and Ben Stallman. Sat., June 25, 6-10pm. Almost Real Things Magazine HQ, 820 Shelby #103. Donations accepted.

Davis Gallery: Summer Group Show

This exhibition showcases the breadth and depth of work by the Davis Gallery family of artists, featuring 34 Central Texas-based creatives – Malou Flato, Fallon Bartos, Lisa Beaman, Steve Brudniak, Jan Heaton, Denise M. Fulton, Dana Younger, Randall Reid, John Sager, Faustinus Deraet, B Shawn Cox, and more – celebrating both the present and historical feel of our ever-changing state. Through July 23. Mon.-Fri., 10am-6pm; Sat., 10am-4pm. 837 W. 12th, 512/477-4929.

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Five Things, Big Medium, Northern-Southern, Women & Their Work, Davis Gallery, ART Ahead, Almost Real Things, Mindful Motions, Steef Crombach, Cryptic Enigma, Stella Alesi, Hailey Gearo, Felipe Gomez, Brittnee Lavender, Rhea Pirani, Ben Stallman, Malou Flato, Fallon Bartos, Lisa Beaman, Steve Brudniak

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