Visual arts

Five gallery exhibits for your summer eyes: Indoor visual art brings in the light, shuns the heat

Stella Alesi in North-South

Summer is coming ! Suggestion: Observe the most dynamic visual examples of reality – whether figurative, abstract or an amalgamation of these – extracted from entire worlds of creation by artists in this sizzling urban center. And, ahhhhh, do it from the air-conditioned comfort of Austin’s many private galleries this first post-solstice weekend and beyond. Here are five recommendations to get you started.

Big Medium: Lightning cannot be controlled

Austin-based transgender artist Xavier Schipani focuses his practice on creating large-scale 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 is little ambiguity about his visual art, however: it’s big, it’s arresting, it’s gorgeous, and it floods the walls of this Canopy anchor gallery with graphic power. June 25-July 30. Thu.-Sat., 12 p.m.-6 p.m. 916 Springdale Building. 2 #101, 512/939-6665. bigmedium.org

North South : &

What has this protean artist Stella Alesi been doing for about a year? What new areas of visual exploration has she mapped out in a way that compels close examination? The answer is in this new show where the painter exhibits her latest creations alongside those of her friends Momo, Michelle Marchesseault, Evan Horn and Michael W. Hall, all abstractionists, all working strictly gratuitously. June 25-July 24. Thu.-Sun., 2 p.m.-6 p.m. 411 Brazos #105. nord-sud.com

Xavier Schipani at Big Medium

Women and their work: a bad monkey

Through soft sculptures and draped foam relief tapestries, Steef Crombach examines the secret lives of local icons like the Wheatsville Raptor and Big Star Bingo Gorilla and more, exploring the evolution of each character as their identity changes over time and place. June 25-August. 4. Tue-Fri, 10am-6pm; Sat., 12 p.m.-6 p.m. Opening: Sat. June 25, 7-9 p.m. 311 E. Caesar Chavez, 512/477-1064. womenandtheirwork.org

ART Ahead: Conscious movements

The creative movers and shakers of Almost Real Things are celebrating artists from their first mentorship program with this group show. Featuring new art from Cryptic Enigma, Hailey Gearo, Felipe Gomez, Brittnee Lavender, Rhea Pirani and Ben Stallman. Saturday June 25, 6-10 p.m. Almost Real magazine headquarters, 820 Shelby #103. Donations accepted. almostrealthings.com/rsvp

Davis Gallery: Summer Collective Exhibition

This exhibition showcases the breadth and depth of the work of the Davis Gallery family of artists, featuring 34 Central Texas 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 current and historic feel of our ever-changing state. Until July 23. Mon-Fri, 10am-6pm; Sat, 10am-4pm. 837 W. 12th, 512/477-4929. davisgalleryaustin.com