PaperCity Magazine

June 2015 - Houston

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I n "Jambalaya," Hank Williams Sr. croons, "Son of a gun, we'll have big fun on the bayou." Was he ever right: In the third jewel of the crown of metropolis-making park projects to re-green Houston, the Buffalo Bayou Partnership wraps the most visible phase of its decades-long master plan Saturday, June 20, with the completion of Buffalo Bayou Park, Sabine Street to Shepherd Drive. The 160-acre swath, 2.3 miles in length, is the city's most unique natural feature. The almost primordial waterway, with its lush verdant riparian zone, is being restored with native plant species, plus trails, public art, pedestrian bridges, a new foodie destination and still more eco attractions (including bike, canoe, kayak and paddle-wheel rentals). The Houston office of celebrated international firm SWA Group served as landscape architect. The visionary $58 million environmental effort was jump-started by a $30 million bequest from the Kinder Foundation in 2010 — one of the largest green gifts in America in this decade. Harris County Flood Control contributed $5 million, while the remaining $23 million was raised by the nonprofit Buffalo Bayou Partnership, which managed the design and construction of the park and will now oversee its operation. Destined to be the most popular elements of the revitalized Buffalo Bayou Park are the already canine-approved Johnny Steele Dog Park; the hypnotic blue trailway lighting designed by L'Observatoire and Stephen Korns; a refreshed Eleanor Tinsley Park (home to the city's annual Fourth of July bash), including the Hines Meadow; and Clark Cooper Concepts' new Grab and Go takeout for breakfast and lunch along Lost Lake. Coming this fall are the restaurateurs' new event space, The Dunlavy, and the reclamation of The Water Works, which tops a partially buried nearly 90-year-old cistern, featuring a park entry point and The Brown Foundation Lawn, which adjoin a Nature Play Area with tri-level treehouse/boat deck and a climbing net for the kiddies. Of course, public art is incorporated. The partnership tapped hometown talents Anthony Thompson Shumate and John Runnels; the former contributes six giant text sculptures in old-timey serif styles throughout the pedestrian paths, while the latter positions a fleet of 11 metal canoes, including a 20-foot stainless-steel masterwork at the Crosby Outfall as a grand gateway to the park. International sculptor Donald Lipski, the third and final artist commissioned, unveils The Periscope, an interactive installation housed at The Water Works. Stay tuned for our profile of the park's main players and more on its grand eastward plans in an upcoming issue. Catherine D. Anspon Big Fun on the BAYOU W ith 30 years of photography between them, and after serendipitously collaborating on two weddings afield in Nicaragua and Jackson Hole, Houston- based photographers Karen Sachar and Chris Bailey have taken their show on the road with a new partnership, Karen + Chris, designed for destination weddings. These are two of Houston's most well- known photographers — her shooting style is glamorous black and white, unveiling the emotion of real-life moments in photos; his shooting style places the subjects at ease to create artistic, timeless shots. They both work with fine art in mind — it's a match made in wedding-album heaven. (Not to worry, they continue to shoot solo in Houston.) We've heard they're longing to shoot in the city of light. Parisian wedding, anyone? Karen Sachar, 713.523.1150, ksachar@; Chris Bailey, 713.518.1452, chrisbailey@ Anne Lee Phillips Destination: Creative Alchemy We're compiling our list of must-attend charity events for PaperCity's Fall Social Calendar, covering the months of September through December 2015. Please submit all essential details for your charitable tickets — event name; day, date and starting time; place; chairmen, honorary chairs and honorees; beneficiary; party notes (caterer, theme, attire, special appearances, entertainment); ticket and table starting prices; and contact info, including phone, email and website, to Anne Lee Phillips,, no later than Tuesday, June 30. See you in September. CALENDAR CALL C hristopher Marley's natural specimens evoke strong reactions. Think about how you're feeling now, just reading this story. If you're squeamish, you'll quickly flip the page or cover the images with a coaster. But, others of you will spend hundreds, if not thousands, to acquire the artistic curves of Marley's serpents, the brilliant colors of his beetles or the shiver-inducing excitement of his scorpions and arachnids. Even Marley was, at one time, terrified of bugs. A former model and missionary (you don't often see those two words in SPIDER MAN the same sentence), Marley found himself in exotic locales where he had to confront his fears. What was once a phobia turned to fascination. Now an artist who uses the natural specimens he collects and preserves as a design medium, Marley creates three- dimensional images and mosaics from reptiles, birds, plants, minerals and aquatic life. (Not to worry, all of his specimens are reclaimed in an environmentally responsible manner.) His second book, Biophilia (Abrams, $50), was recently published and includes a dazzling section called "Unity," where he reveals deep relationships between vastly different natural objects, from feathers to orchids to rubies. Book and collection of natural specimens, at Eclectic Home, High Fashion Home, Kuhl- Linscomb, Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams, Three Doors. Rebecca Sherman J ust in: three notable Houston galleries have signed on for the Texas Contemporary Art Fair. The trio — Barbara Davis Gallery, Betty Moody Gallery and David Shelton Gallery — are all returning exhibitors directed by respected gallerists who are instrumental in shaping the dialogue of contemporary art in Texas. Betty Moody, with her venerable 40-plus-year history, will once again curate a booth stocked with vintage works and new creations from artists in her stable including Contemporary Arts Museum Houston-exhibited conceptual talent Debra Barrera, Whitney Biennial man Al Souza, collagist Mary McCleary and the ethereal nature-inspired sculptress Lisa Ludwig. "The Texas Contemporary consistently brings to Houston a modern Canvas: Insider Preview — TEXAS CONTEMPORARY ART FAIR, YEAR FIVE October 1 – 4, 2015 H O U S T O N Barbara Davis with an Andrea Bianconi wall drawing David Shelton with a Vincent Valdez drawing Betty Moody with a sculpture by Bill Steffy and well-vetted fair," Moody says. "We are very much looking forward to participating again this year." Barbara Davis will place internationals such as Mie Olise and Andrea Bianconi alongside Texas greats including Joe Mancuso and Paul Fleming. "Houston has become the third largest art center in the United States," Davis says. "By exhibiting at the Texas Contemporary, the gallery is supporting the city and its vibrant art scene … The Fair is very discerning in the selection process of exhibitors. The overview of smart and forward work shown encompasses a global perspective." Davis, who's exhibited at the Dallas Art Fair as well as Art Basel Miami Beach, singles out the allure of the Texas Contemporary for out-of-towners: "Collectors will have the opportunity to discover new artists who are up-and- coming in the international art scene, as well as visit Houston's prominent private collections." For dealer David Shelton, showing in the Texas Contemporary Art Fair in 2011 was the defining moment that made his gallery's move from San Antonio to Houston possible, after an eagle-eyed collector swept up a suite of Vincent Valdez drawings. For the 2015 Fair, Shelton curates a four-person exhibition that features drawings by Valdez (who was just named the 2015 Texas State Visual Artist for two-dimensional work) along with new works by MFAH Core Fellow Rodrigo Valenzuela (last year's $10,000 Texas Contemporary Prize winner), performance-shaped Tameka Norris and Matthew Craven, whose imagery quotes times past, especially archaeology. "This year, which marks the fifth edition, will see new national and international dealers, creative programming and lots of fun events," Shelton says. "This is sure to be its strongest and most exciting yet." JULIE SOEFER JENNY ANTILL CLIFTON JACK THOMPSON Buffalo Bayou along Allen's Landing, 1912 Buffalo Bayou Park COURTESY BUFFALO BAYOU PARTNERSHIP JIM OLIVE Photographers Chris Bailey and Karen Sachar teaming up for destination weddings Christopher Marley's specimen collections STEPHEN DUX Wedding reception in Managua, Nicaragua KAREN + CHRIS

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