In my last Arts post, I laid out some simple rules of how to attend an art gallery opening. This time around, I want to give you some suggestions about galleries you might want to visit.
Bering & James
As I mentioned in my last post, this is probably my favorite gallery in Houston. You will recall Rule #7: An opening does not an evening make. Any gallery that you decide to frequent should have immediate access to post opening possibilities. Bering & James boasts Houston favorite, Gravitas, and the delightful BYOB gem Lucio’s within walking distance. Whether you want to go casual or chic, your post opening festivities are set at Bering & James. Parking can be a bit tricky, but B&J will normally have complimentary valet. That or you can always valet at Gravitas for a pre-opening cocktail, and walk over from there. Be careful with the latter option, you don’t want to run afoul of Rule #5: The wine is free, but this isn’t Cheers, Norm.
Gremillion & Co. Fine Art, Inc.
First off, let’s get your pronunciation right. It’s Greh-MEE-on not Greh-million. You’ll score serious points right off the bat if you can say her name right. I met the owner of this gallery during my time at Society for the Performing Arts. This is also a gallery for high-level art collectors.
Let me explain. You’ll know a lot about the level of collector you’re hobnobbing with pretty easily by looking at the prices of the art. Bigger price, bigger level of collector. However, don’t let that deter you from going to certain galleries. Attending gallery openings isn’t just about buying art, it’s also about discovering your personal tastes.
While it can be very subjective, an artist will typically charge what people are willing to pay for their art. More sought after artists charge more for their pieces. However, you should NEVER use the prices to dictate whether you like the art. In fact, I can guarantee that you will eventually find yourself looking at something that you think is ridiculously overpriced at $10,000, and absolutely fall in love with the piece that is priced at $100 somewhere else.
Which brings me to another point. You’re going to walk into some galleries, and you’re going to see some pretty crazy stuff. Embrace that fact right now. If all art was for all people, it would cease to be art. Art, by nature, is supposed to challenge people in different ways. Sure, you may like it, but you need to take time to ask yourself why? And the same thing goes double for anything you absolutely cannot stand. I tell you this because I promise you that you will, one evening, find yourself starting at a big effing mess on the wall, and will not want to live without it. If you allow yourself the proper amount of personal introspection, you’ll not be confused when this inevitably happens to you. It’s really okay, it’s actually a pretty fantastic feeling.
The Colquitt “Gallery Row”
This is my moniker, I don’t know if these galleries ever refer to themselves as a group. Nevertheless, the 2600 block of Colquitt is a fantastic collection of galleries covering a wide range of disciplines that makes for an entertaining gallery crawl. Better yet, the galleries tend to have openings en masse giving you delightful opportunity to see a great selection of art.
The galleries of Gallery Row include, among others, Dean Day Gallery, Goldesberry Gallery, Hooks-Epstein Gallery, Moody Gallery and John Cleary Gallery. The group openings at Colquitt always draw a diverse crowd, and make for a perfect Saturday night out with friends.
Your adventures in Houston’s art galleries are just beginning. Have fun, be willing to open your mind, and you’ll be sure to find yourself in interesting places both personally and socially. There’s a wonderful world out there for you to find, you just have to get out there and experience it. I hope I have been of some help.
See you at the galleries!