Exhibits - Austin Public Library

image of artwork of stag made from recycled materials
What a Mess: Calder Kamin

April 16 – May 24, 2019
Central Library, Main Gallery | 710 W. César Chávez St.

  • Opening Reception | Friday, April 19, 7-9 PM
  • Artist Talk & Workshop | Thursday, May 16, 6-8 PM

Calder Kamin’s exhibition What a Mess showcases trash transformed into sculptures, animations and installations, commenting on the mess humans have made for our natural neighbors throughout our existence. Through her art advocacy, she encourages audiences to find courage to withstand the growing pains by ending our wasteful culture, dependency on oil, and finding new resolutions.

This exhibition is dedicated to the student strikes #FridaysforFuture.

Image: Plastic Planet Stag, 2018, Calder Kamin, photo by Philip Rogers

collage image of media arts installations
UNESCO Media Arts Exhibition at SXSW

March 9 – April 3, 2019
Central Library, Gallery | 710 W. César Chávez St.

Austin Central Library hosts the 2019 UNESCO Media Arts Exhibition at SXSW, March 9 – April 3*, in its 3,000-square-foot gallery.  The exhibition, which is part of the SXSW Art Program and supports the City of Austin's UNESCO designation, features installations by artists or artist teams whose work explores the intersection of art and technology. Exhibiting artists include:

  • Adrian Aguilera and Betelhem Makonnen (Austin)
  • Shawn Camp (Austin)
  • Dadageek: Lisa Woods, Barna Kantor and Jerome Martinez (Austin)
  • Sonya Gonzalez (Austin)
  • OSSMO: Cesar Axel Aguilar Rodriquez, Carlos Andres Zenteno Pineda and Jorge Armando Vargas Bravo (Guadalajara, Mexico)
  • Steven Parker (Austin)
  • qujOchÖ: Thomas Philipp, Davide Bevilacqua and Eva Maria Dreisiebner (Linz, Austria)
  • Scenocosme: Gregory Lasserre & Anais met den Ancxt (Lyon, France)
  • Mila Sketch (Austin)

An opening reception for the exhibition will be 6-8 pm, Saturday, March 9, in the Central Library Gallery. In addition, the Central Library is hosting a panel discussion on “UNESCO Creative Cities Network: Fostering a Strong Future for Digital Artmaking” 4-5:30 pm, Saturday, March 9. Both events are free and open to all.

*Some of the artworks will be de-installed by March 18 and the rest will be up until April 3.

smithsonian poster a place for all people
For All People: Introducing the National Museum of African American History and Culture

February 1 March 27
Central Library, 3rd Floor | 710 W. César Chávez St.

A Place for All People: Introducing the National Museum of African American History and Culture is a commemorative poster exhibition celebrating the opening of the Smithsonian’s newest museum in September 2016. Based on the inaugural exhibitions of the museum, the posters highlight key artifacts that tell the rich and diverse story of the African American experience. A Place for All People is organized by the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service (SITES) in collaboration with the museum. The permanent traveling exhibition is coordinated by kYmberly Keeton, African American Community Archivist & Librarian, Austin History Center.

Public tours will be available on February 14 & 28 and March 6 & 20, from 10-11:30 AM. RSVP kymberly.keeton@austintexas.gov.

The Austin History Center’s African American Community Archives presents a series of Black History Month public programs about issues in the black community, genealogy sessions, scholarly presentations and exhibitions held during the month of February. All are free and open to the public and will be held at the Austin History Center, Austin Public Library, and other city cultural arts complexes throughout Austin.

Poster Image Courtesy, Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service

AR.2002.017(87) old school building
Tune in to Health: A Radio Program for Travis County Rural Schools

February 5 – April 21, 2019
Austin History Center | 810 Guadalupe St.

Tune in to Health: A Radio Program for Travis County Rural Schools presents photograph selections from the Texas Extended School and Community Health Education Program Records (AR.2002.017).  The collection features over 200 black and white photographs from the 1949-1950 school year of the Healthy Living in Our County radio program, a public health education initiative tailored for Travis County rural schools. Teachers, students, and parents were encouraged to tune in each week to engage in a series of thirty 15-minute educational broadcasts programmed through Radio House at the University of Texas at Austin. Topics ranged from receiving immunizations, balanced diets, fire children at boardprevention, and rat control to knowing your doctor and maintaining proper mental health. Photographs were taken by Willis R. Bodine, a consultant from the Division of Extension who conducted in-person trainings, interviews, and site visits throughout the duration of the radio program.

The exhibit images provide a rare glimpse into these rural school communities, capturing student activity, school segregation, home living conditions, school infrastructure, and engagement with the Healthy Living in Our Country radio curriculum. The radio program served as a model for neighboring school districts, with the Texas Health Education Council selecting Healthy Living in Our County as the number one project to promote in every county in Texas.

Left Image: Austin History Center,  AR.2002.017(102), Top Image: Austin History Center, AR.2002.017(87)

Streetcar on 6th and congress
Off the Rails: The Rise and Fall of Austin’s Streetcars

December 11, 2018 – May 26, 2019
Austin History Center | 810 Guadalupe St.

StreetcarOff the Rails: The Rise and Fall of Austin’s Streetcars documents the history of the operation of streetcars in Austin from 1875 to 1940. The chosen photographs and documents highlight the impact that the transit system had upon the city’s growth and development. Conflict with rideshare companies, issues of mobility and transportation, and electric light rail might all seem like modern issues, but the story of the streetcar proves otherwise and offers us an example of how Austin has attempted to deal with these questions in the past. The opening reception is December 11, 6:30 PM. The reception and exhibit are free and open to the public. For more information, please contact Rusty Heckaman at (512) 974-7583 or rusty.heckaman@austintexas.gov

Left Image: Austin History Center, PICA 18776b, Top Image: Austin History Center, C02001b