Houston’s best art events make a splash with dazzling, immersive works


June brings some major exhibitions to jump into this summer, sometimes even literally. We’re getting immersive this month, from animated large-scale Impressionism rooms to explore to reality bending spaces.

Look for intriguing and groundbreaking contemporary work from some of our favorite art spaces, plus a celebration of local artists. Get set for the hottest art throughout the city.

“Baseera Khan: Weight on History” at Rice Moody Center (now through August 27)

The New York-based/Denton, Texas-raised artist truly embodies the “multi” in the multidisciplinary artist description in creating work that explores the complex issues of commodification, politics, and the body through pop culture, architecture, fashion, and music.

This first exhibition in Houston will feature new work, including the monumental Painful Arc (Shoulder-High), which the Moody describes as expanding upon the artist’s interest in architectural archetypes and the authority they represent. Using commonplace materials, including wood and installation foam, Khan renders a classical Islamic arch clad with images of the artist’s body and recurrent symbols from their practice such as the standing microphone.

In keeping with the multi, the rest of the exhibition will include art created in the last five years from video work, soft sculpture, to handmade rugs to a disco ball that rotates to the beats of Khan’s album, I Am an Archive.

PrintHouston at participating galleries across Houston (Summer 2022)

PrintMatters Houston will celebrate the eighth PrintHouston, a biennial city-wide celebration of original prints, the artists who create them, and the people who collect them.

Houston-area galleries, museums and institutions will showcase the diversity of printmaking art forms with exhibits, artist talks and workshops. Those galleries and art organizations participating in PrintHouston are the Archway Gallery, Burning Bones Press, The Community Artists’ Collective, Ellio Fine Art, Foltz Fine Art, Galveston Arts Center, Glassell School of Art, Hooks-Epstein Galleries, Inman Gallery, McClain Gallery, Moody Gallery, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, and Redbud Gallery.

Tamarind Institute, a nonprofit center for collaborative printmaking, will be the featured guest of this event.

“Mariah Garnett: Dreamed This Gateway” at Contemporary Art Museum (now through August 28)

This first U.S. solo museum presentation of the work of Los Angeles-based artist and filmmaker will reach operatic heights, as the artist collaborates with experimental vocalist Holland Andrews, Cairo-based documentary playwright Raphaël Khouri, and professional opera singers Christopher Paul Craig and Breanna Sinclairé to create multimedia art, including a multi channel installation.

Garnett’s recent work, including the CAMH commissioned piece, are inspired by an archive of materials related to the life and artistic output of her great-great-aunt, spiritualist and composer Ruth Lynda Deyo (1884–1960). The CAMH describes Garnett’s collaborative operatic videos, will feature both highly staged and improvisatory performances, that “emphasize sonic dissonance alongside lush lyricism to mesmerizing effect.“

“Hugh Hayden: Boogey Men” at Blaffer Art Museum (now through September 4)

Trained as an architect, the Dallas-born, now NY-based artist works across mediums, something visitors will soon see in this exhibition highlighting some of Hayden’s most monumental recent works.

The Blaffer explains that Hayden is known for creating anthropomorphic forms that explore our relationship with the natural world, noting that renowned for his use of wood—taking disparate natural species and manipulating them to reveal complex histories and meanings—Hayden crafts intricate metaphors and meditations on experience and memory that question social dynamics and the ever-shifting ecosystem.

Museum of Fine Arts European Galleries Reinstallation (permanent)

The opening of the Nancy and Rich Kinder Building continues to make creative art waves throughout the MFAH campus. With so much more space for the vast MFAH collection, curators were able to reimagine the American galleries in the Beck Building. As CultureMap reported, hat means a major reinstallation of their massive collection of European art, spanning the Middle Ages through the 18th century.

The Big Show at Lawndale (June 18-August 13)

One of Houston’s biggest and brightest annual juried shows is back, always reflecting Lawndale’s commitment to local and regional artists at various stages of their careers and always giving Houston art-lovers a chance to get to view the best locally. For 2022 Ballroom Marfa curator Daisy Nam selected 38 artists from over 500 submissions.

“Immersive Monet & The Impressionists” at Lighthouse Art Space (June 24-August 14)

First came Van Gogh, then Frida Kahlo. Now, one of the most popular art periods gets its immersive turn. The Impressionists, those rebel artists of their time who captured light onto canvas in new and previously unimaginable ways, become that latest subjects of the large-scale projections and animation process that surrounds viewers with the artwork.

With this next immersive art show from Lighthouse, visitors can dive into all those landscapes, illuminated interiors, private portraits, street scenes, and dancers studios and see them as never seen before — on giant screens, animated, and set to music. Look for all our favorites, Monet, Renoir, Degas, Cassatt, and more.

“Leandro Erlich: Seeing is not Believing” at MFAH (June 26-September 5)

A summer tradition for nearly a decade now, the MFAH presents a cool immersive and usually large-scale installation to explore on those hot Houston days.

With the blockbuster M. C. Escher exhibition still open, visual paradoxes and optical illusions are decidedly on-trend at the museum, so these two installations of Argentine conceptional artist Leandro Erlich’s work will fit right in, especially considering that Erlich was once a resident of the Glassell School’s Core program.

Along with a selection of smaller-scale works spanning the artist’s career, “Seeing is not Believing” will present two of Erich’s most well known installations: Le cabinet du psy (The Psychoanalyst’s Office) (2005) and Batîment (2004), along with a selection of additional works spanning the artist’s career. As museum-goers explore the immersive environments, the installations will challenge their perceptions of time, space, reality, and illusion.

“Over more than 25 years, Leandro Erlich has deeply considered the emotional, social and even socio-political dimensions of our everyday environments,” said Mari Carmen Ramirez, Wortham Curator of Latin American Art in a press release. “His interventions into ordinary spaces resonate perhaps even more so today, at a time when our collective sense of time and space has become fluid and uncertain.”


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