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Michael Barnes

Art on the Edge at the Blanton Museum

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It’s a wonderful place for art. And for socializing.

Art-wise, the Blanton Museum of Art offers a little bit of everything for everyone. And its leaders constantly re-invent it.

Blanton

Elizabeth Aubrey and Jamie Chioco at Art on the Edge at the Blanton Museum.

Socially, the soaring aquamarine lobby has long hosted stylish openings and cocktail parties. The biennial black-tie museum gala grew so large, the sit-down dinner moved across the street to the Bullock Texas State History Museum.

The Blanton’s more casual Art on the Edge, however, stayed put and was turned into an annual benefit. Although too many people clustered near the entryway, bar stations were set up everywhere except, naturally, in the art galleries.

blanton2Once past the main mob, circulation proved easier and more rewarding. I met up with museum director Simone Wicha, who talked about the changes and additions expected in the coming year. I luxuriated in a long chat with Kathy Blackwell (Austin Way) and Steve Scheibal (Dell Medical School). Also caught up a bit with Rachel Koper (Women & Their Work), Bryan Azar (Ilios Lighting Design) and his wife Juliana. Also spent time with the founders of the new 78704 Gallery, which opened with a show by Bob “Daddy-O” Wade.

A few arts types dressed up for the event, as did some top socials, but the crowd, as is so often the case in Austin, was just as varied as one can imagine. Always a good thing.