Elisabet Ney Museum
304 E. 44th, Austin, 78751, 512/458-2255
Nineteenth-century Texas in all its heroic glory comes to life in this preserved studio of the pioneering sculptor Elisabet Ney. As gifted as she was at portraying human emotion in majestic statuary, Ney could have carved out a comfortable life for herself in cosmopolitan Europe, but she chose to emigrate to the Lone Star frontier, where she sculpted images of Texian heroes for display in the State Capitol. Her charming castle/studio, "Formosa," nestled in a corner of the Hyde Park neighborhood, is a temple to her work, filled with chalky plaster casts of her works that radiate epic drama and inspire an almost holy awe.
As part of Austin Museum Day, you can hie yourself to this excellent venue and explore the many ways to produce portraits – and self-portraits – using crayons, paint, clay, words, rocks, music, pieces of metal, trash, and even raw data. Think you'll be hungry? Bonus: Food trucks! Sun., Sept. 23, noon-4pm. Free.