Austin, Texas: The Ultimate Quirky Family Travel Destination
Austin has an incredible art scene and one great place to experience local art is at the Austin Art Garage - the every person’s art gallery. The co-founder of Austin Art Garage, Jake Bryer, told us that his passion to is to offer affordable art for every home. I quite like the sound of that! I specifically enjoyed all of the Austin-themed art, which made this an excellent non-touristy tourist shop for visitors.
An Insider's Guide to Austin: Downtime During SXSW
by Kelly Luce
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South of the river and Lady Bird Lake lies the ever-evolving South Lamar. The area’s a respite from the trendy crowds in the South Congress (SoCo) area. This stretch, once home to a handful of car dealerships, has grown rapidly during the past few years, resulting in a unique hodgepodge of locally owned bars, food trucks, taxidermists (yup), shoe doctors (double yup), and art galleries.
Local and emerging artists are showcased at Austin Art Garage, whose mission is to bring art into the lives of people from all socio-economic backgrounds. This is your chance to snag a piece by an artist while they’re still affordable. And the artistic styles represented are all over the map, including many that might not find gallery homes elsewhere.
Uncovering Austin's Hidden Art Scene
by Alexandra Villalba
This downtown art gallery hosts a variety of local artists and painting styles for sale, and the exhibits are updated regularly to feature new artists and collections. From funky folk and longhorn-inspired paintings to graphic and modern art, Austin Art Garage displays must-have original pieces for all art lovers.
Here Are The 10 Best Kept Secrets In Austin
Despite the endless amount of culture, beer, and art in Austin, it’s easy to fall into a predictable routine. Shake up your weekend by checking out some of the best kept secrets in Austin! Whether you’re craving a delightful cocktail or a new view of the city, there’s still plenty to be discovered.
7. Austin Art Garage
Tucked away on South Lamar, Austin Art Garage showcases some of the best local art in the city.
Local Art Resource: Austin Art Garage!
We've briefly mentioned a favorite local art gallery, Austin Art Garage, on Apartment Therapy before. Going on two years of offering residents a selection of affordable work from emerging local talent, AAG is also excited to announce the expansion of their space...
Known for discovering some of the best, up-and-coming artists in Austin and selling their work for very reasonable prices, Austin Art Garage also produces many of the hippest art events around town, allowing art to reach as many people as possible. Previously operating in a tiny workshop space off of South Lamar, owners Jake Bryer and Joel Ganucheau have recently doubled their space by expanding into a room next door to create "Austin Art Garage Exhibit." Now offering artists the chance to display a larger variety and range of their artwork than before, each artist's work will be exhibited for a month, and there are already six month's worth of shows scheduled. The first opening show in the new space will be on September 10th and feature the art of illustrative artist Catherine Hart. If you've never been to Austin Art Garage, you should definitely make a trip. Not only are the artists creating great-looking art, but prices are kept low so that everyone can have access to quality, local art pieces.
Are you a fan of Austin Art Garage? Do you invest in local art, and if so, where do you purchase it? Does your city have a gallery with goals similar to Austin Art Garage? Let us know!
Austin Art Beat – Austin's Art Garage Provides Culture Off the Beaten Path
There are a slew of live music events each week, and happy hours aplenty, but Austin’s art scene is well worth exploring. So we’re going to bring you a weekly spotlight of some of the eclectic artful activities that grace the Capitol City. Because it wouldn’t kill us to get a little culture in between margaritas, right?
This week, we visit the Austin Art Garage on 2200 S. Lamar Blvd. Co-owned by artists Jake Breyer and Joel Ganucheau, the Austin Art Garage prides itself on hosting pieces by Austin based artists. And more importantly, says artist/employee Tim Lasater, the AAG offers “good art at a reasonable price.”
After a work related accident some months ago, Lasater fell into painting. Now he has put up shop in the Austin Art Garage. The Garage has a “laid back and easy going vibe,” he says, with a more friendly approach towards both artists and customers. He related how owners Breyer and Ganucheau had become increasingly unhappy with the art galleries around town. They found places to be “stuffy” and were given contemptuous and judgment laden scowls when they would ask how much a piece was.
“If you have to ask the price,” said the snobbish art gallery owner while adjusting his monocle, “then you probably can’t afford it”. Infused with bohemian rage the pair set out to create a haven for local artists. And it seems that they have succeeded. The array of artists in the Garage was impressive, eclectic, and highly affordable.
Mary Streepy’s art was the first to catch my eye. Much like the gallery around her, she seemed to have numerous styles. One piece, titled Wayne Coyne (front man of The Flaming Lips), had a heavy influence from graffiti art while the next (titled Wedding Bell Blues) looked like something that a recently dumped Dr. Seuss would have drawn. A small, charming, painting followed these two pieces; which depicted David Bowie from his Ziggy Stardust days.
Next was Gabe Langholtz’s The Preconceived Hope. At first glance, one doesn’t think much of it, but upon a closer inspection the piece is immensely gorgeous and has numerous, however faint, layers to it. Joel Ganucheau’s H is for Home is simplistic and beautiful. The space of it and the glaring red draws the eye in. Tim Lasater’s cleverly titled piece Bon Motivo has a rich texture to it. Doug Farmer’s The Primitive Directivehad a giggle-inducing comic book charm to it, which any nerd could not help but enjoy. In the same comedic and pop culture vein, Jake Breyer’s Spaghetti Modern will catch any Clint Eastwood fan’s eye.
While all of the artists in the garage are immensely talented, two artists of special note are Graham Franciose and Jason Eatherly; more specifically Franciose’s Don’t Worry, He’s a Vegetarian and Eatherly’s See You Later. Franciose (who is appropriately involved in drawing children’s stories) has a cutesy and clever approach to his magical art. Meanwhile, Eatherly’s Banksy-esque graffiti art is just plain engaging and strikes true to the heart of any viewer.
Simply put: the owners of the Austin Art Garage have succeeded in creating a safe haven for local artists of all varieties. Simultaneously, they have created a gallery off the beaten path (they are literally located at the end of a dirt road) for anyone who loves art but doesn’t have the cash to afford the habit as it were. The gallery is great for both bohemians and families alike (bohemian families are in for a real treat).
Austin Art Garage is the every person's art gallery with affordable art for sale and to enjoy. The Art Gallery displays and sells art from local up and coming artists. The co-founder of Austin Art Garage Jake Bryer told us many local Austin artists have started showing here, and then moved on to bigger (read: more expensive and well-known) galleries. We stopped him on his way in when he was bringing more of his photography art for sale for the shop. We didn't know that he was the co-founder of the place as we chatted with him, and now it makes me happy to know we liked his art the best, and we bought several pieces to take home with us. He told us about his passion to get affordable art for every home, and I like the sound of that. Austin Art Garage is also online and you can shop for the art on their website http://austinartgarage.com.
But if you are in Austin, I highly recommend visiting, a great place both for locals and visitors. They have several artists who create Austin-themed art making this an excellent non-touristy tourist shop.
Austin Art Garage founders reflect on growing art scene, maintaining Austin aesthetic - Full Article
Down a small dirt path off South Lamar sits a metal building not much larger than two dorm rooms. The rusted metal sidings, exposed concrete foundation and dusty exterior leave little hint as to what lies inside the building’s walls: local art, and lots of it, with pieces ranging in price from $20 to $2,500.
The Austin Art Garage, founded in 2007 by Jake Bryer and Joel Ganucheau, is a place for artists and buyers to sell and purchase art in a place that aims to capture the aesthetic of the Austin lifestyle.
“The gallery is for the everyday person,” Bryer said. “Someone that’s young that doesn’t have enough money can buy something, but also there are big original pieces for people to buy. Not everything is affordable for everyone, but there’s something for everyone.”
After working 7.5 years for the Austin Business Journal, Bryer began looking for art to furnish his home in Austin. Following an unsuccessful search, the idea for the art garage took root.
“I could not find a gallery that reflected Austin at all,” Bryer said. “Instead they were more high-end galleries that felt intimidating. I thought, ‘Where does a normal person go to buy art?’”
With a marketing degree and no previous art experience, Bryer sought out Ganucheau, an artist and childhood friend, for help.
“I was pretty excited when Jake first called me about the idea of opening the Art Garage,” Ganucheau said. “When we were in high school we both always talked about opening a business together. I guess that was in the back of Jake’s mind.”
After searching on Craigslist, the two found their current location.
“We were looking for a place like this,” Bryer said. “Something that looked lowbrow and funky and cheap.”
After renovating the building, Bryer and Ganucheau began searching for artists by posting ads on Craigslist, and they were soon flooded with offers. They have since quit their previous jobs and the art garage has doubled in size, showcasing dozens of local emerging and established artists.
“We’re 100 percent local,” Ganucheau said. “There is so much talent in this town and there’s so many artists in this town that don’t know what to do and where to go, and we try to create a launch pad for them.”
Tim Lasater, a local artist and childhood friend of Bryer and Ganucheau, has been showcasing in the gallery for the past two years.
“I was working in another field and I hurt my knee,” Lasater said. “They handed me some paints and canvases and brushes. They gave me the opportunity to sell some art and some of them sold and I was like, ‘I’m an artist now.’ I’ve seen so many emerging artists come through here. It’s like an incubation place.”
Both Bryer and Ganucheau’s work is featured in the garage alongside the work of other artists. Still, the two try to keep a distinction between being artists and business owners.
“I try not to push my own art and let the other artists have a fair chance of selling their work,” Ganucheau said. “This gallery isn’t about Jake and I. That sort of came along the way.”
After watching it change for the past seven years, the owners are happy that the art garage is located in the middle of what they consider Austin’s growing art scene.
“I feel like we’re at a tipping point,” Bryer said. “We’ve been supporting this all along. We don’t ever look at it as a competitive thing. It’s always growing and I think there’s room for collaboration.”
Finding Urban Contemporary Art in the most Surprising Spaces
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Austin's Best Local Galleries - Full Article
Austin Art Garage has successfully founded an art gallery without any pretension. Two friends, Jake Bryer and Joel Ganucheau, who are artists themselves, sought to create an art shop for new and emerging artists. The gallery is jam-packed with affordable art from local artists, so if you want to add some culture to your living room that doesn’t cost as much as your mortgage payments, the Art Garage is the place for you.
The Five most Austin Gifts found at Blue Genie Art Bazaar
The prints from Austin Art Garage captivate the eye from yards away. Jake Bryer’s depictions of famous music venues and city skylines pop with bold colors and sharp geometric shapes. These canvases would make any living room radiate with pure, Austin energy. Forget stockings! These digitally layered photographs just beg to be hung by the chimney with care.
Review Link to Profile
This cool little independent…well, we hesitate to call it a ‘gallery’ because that would needlessly scare some people off. Anyway, it features some pretty great artwork by Austin artists. (Hey, Joel Ganucheau: we’re fans.) Check out the website to catch the vibe, and definitely check out the ‘gallery’ if you like what you see.
Affordable, Awesome, Art
April 15, 2013 Link to Article
Despite his modesty, Jake Bryer, founder and co-owner of the Austin Art Garage, is an enviably brave dude. Once upon a time, as an advertising executive at the Austin Business Journal, he owned luxury vehicles could afford an overseas vacation every year. This was at 29, an age at which most people would be perfectly satisfied with that level of success, and are less likely to chuck an established lifestyle in favor of whatever happiness is. But that’s exactly what Jake did.
“One day I just realized that I wasn’t happy. I had all this stuff that I didn’t even have time to use, and I felt like my childish wonderment and creativity was being sucked away,” says Bryer.
It was his girlfriend’s fault.
“At the time, my girlfriend and I were getting closer and about to move in together, and she had art that her ex had made up on the wall. I told her if she took it down, I’d go out and buy our first original art piece.”
But, he couldn’t find one.
“I went to all the galleries, and I noticed there were no prices on the art. I felt like I was in a nice restaurant and all of the prices said market value. I was embarrassed to ask and I just kind of tucked my head between my shoulders and walked out.”
The high art world does tend to intimidate, and the generational Catch-22 of the unestablished art sphere is that it can’t afford itself. That nagging awareness haunted Jake’s mind, and combined with his growing professional discontent it began to spawn into a significant idea: The Austin Art Garage, where high meets low, and quality meets accessibility.
Along with his business partner, artist Joel Ganucheau, Bryer created the Art Garage in 2007 to expose emerging artists and offer art enthusiasts an opportunity to invest in art created within their community. Quality and integrity are at the forefront for the Art Garage, while maintaining accessibility and affordability.
“I wanted to have a gallery where I felt like there was something for everyone. That’s why we try to have staggered pricing, where we have stuff for $20, or originals for under $100. And then there’s big stuff that is more expensive, but worth it for a really nice piece.”
Housed in a small complex of metal-sided buildings at 2200 South Lamar, the Art Garage is filled with paintings and sculptures from a wide variety of rotating artists. Every piece has received the nod of approval from both Jake and Joel, and is labeled with both the creator’s name and the price. They have something for everyone, from the cash-strapped college student to the seasoned art collector looking to invest in new talent.
The Art Garage is open 6 days a week, Tue-Sat from 11am-6pm, and Sunday from 12-5pm. Their entire gallery is also available online at AustinArtGarage.com.
Jake, Joel and the Birth of the Austin Art Garage
By Abby Fraser - 2013 Link to Article
Jake Bryer and Joel Ganucheau are diligently doing their part to counterbalance the influx of insipid development along South Lamar (not naming any names, chain burrito joint). Friends since high school, these two entrepreneurs founded Austin Art Garage five years ago and have since helped inspire, encourage, and promote countless emerging artists in the Austin community. A stroll through their gallery immediately connects potential buyers to the local art scene and entices a curiosity about the creator of each eye-catching piece.
The capital ‘A,’ capital ‘G’ Art Garage was preceded and inspired by a decidedly lower-case ‘a,’ lower-case ‘g’ art garage on the campus of Texas State University. Jake and Joel both attended the former Southwest Texas State and, although they were not the closest of companions during their college years, they did occasionally cross paths. One afternoon they happened to be hangin’ in Joel’s garage, and Jake found himself admiring a stockpile of hibernating artwork. Joel, the humble artist behind the collection, brushed aside Jake’s insistence that the work could be of great interest in the local market, and nothing more was said of the idea
The two continued along their semi-separate paths, both graduating and finding gainful employment. Jake went to work for the Austin Business Journal and Joel managed a local printing shop. Jake had a girlfriend, things got serious, and they decided to live together. One glitch: her place was adorned with artwork from her ex. All of a sudden, Jake – until now someone who merely admired art – was a man in desperate need of some new freaking art.
As Jake set off on his quest to decorate his new home, he discovered a few glaring shortcomings in the Austin art scene: pieces were never clearly priced (if they were even priced at all), the market seemed to cater almost exclusively to the upper class, and there was minimal selection from emerging artists. These disappointing discoveries got the wheels spinning in motion. Jake began brainstorming a list of changes that others in his demographic would appreciate. He began with the realization that many young people buy art while they are in a period of life transition, and these transitions necessitate a high level of transparency. When considering artwork, these buyers are looking for a market that is easily accessible online and is upfront about the cost, sizing, and availability of all pieces. Jake remembered the art garage and the idea of Art Garage, and then reached out to Joel for help. This time the two talked seriously about bringing original, locally-produced art to the Austin market. They were convinced of the concept and clear about the strategy they would employ: keep it simple, keep it transparent, and keep the spotlight on emerging, local artists.
In 2007 Jake and Joel opened the doors of Austin Art Garage on South Lamar. They proceeded cautiously at first, keeping their day jobs and running the Garage on the weekends. To build up the first selection of artwork, the guys ran an ad on Craigslist and received an immediate and enthusiastic response from hundreds of local artists (as always, thank you for…well…modern society as we know it, Mr. Newmark). The art community was clearly thrilled to discover a gallery focused on participating in the artists’ stories and helping emerging artists realize their potential. Austin Art Garage quickly proved to be exactly the type of venue for which the local market was primed, and within eight months Jake had left the Austin Business Journal in order to dive full-time into the Garage. Joel joined him just a few months later.
Austin Art Garage has now been going strong for five years and it still holds tight to its founding principles. Every piece submitted to the gallery must earn a nod of approval from both owners, and artists are encouraged to keep their pricing modest until they establish a healthy following. Every piece accepted into the collection is clearly labeled with both the creator’s name and the price, and the entire gallery inventory is available online. In addition, Jake and Joel require every submission to be substantial enough to hang ‘as is’…meaning ‘without a frame’. They avoid framing in order to keep the pieces affordable for the budget-conscious consumer.
Today Austin Art Garage is a staple amongst the local art scene and also regularly receives orders from all over the country. Jake and Joel receive anywhere between 40 and 100 new art submissions per month and sell 20 to 50 paintings each week. The Garage has established a solid lineup of artists that consistently sell well and enjoy feedback from their customers. As the gallery has continued to make a profit over the years, Jake and Joel have invested back into the company, allowing the Garage to grow organically. Everything has progressed at a healthy pace and the Garage is poised for future success.
Austin Art Garage will have a double booth at the Austin City Limits festival this year, and if last year is any indication sales will skyrocket immediately after the festival, or as soon as everyone sobers up and remembers to check the ‘notes’ on their cell phones. Jake and Joel have also started kicking around plans for the future: a new gallery for established artists who have already ‘proven’ themselves at Art Garage and have a dedicated buyer following. There will also be a newsletter…available someday (there’s only so much two guys can do at once!) solely for local artists and showcasing various promotional opportunities in Austin and elsewhere.
Next time you’re in the area, swing into Austin Art Garage, meet Jake and Joel, and soak in the impressive wealth of artistic talent in our home town.
Oh, by the way, Jake and his girlfriend? They got married and have lived happily ever after. It must have been the new art.
West Austin Studio Tour Preview: Austin Art Garage
By Tracie Chan - March 2013 Link to Article
Former advertising executive Jake Bryer was in the process of moving into a new home when he decided to invest in some art. With $600 budgeted for a piece of original art, he visited galleries around town only to find that all art was either beyond his price range or did not have prices listed. "Like a wine list, if you have to ask, then you can't afford it," Bryer thought. That's when Bryer contacted his childhood friend, artist Joel Ganucheau, to form a partnership and open Austin Art Garage (2200 S. Lamar Blvd) with the goal of giving emerging artists an opportunity to sell work while offering 100% local art at all price points to art enthusiasts.
Bryer and Ganucheau found the perfect, unpretentious space just off S. Lamar — a former lumber yard built in the 1940s. Bryer put up a Craigslist ad for original art, and artists, with work in tow, formed a line out the door. In July 2007, Austin Art Garage opened for business. Within a year, both Bryer and Ganucheau were able to quit their day jobs and focus on the gallery.
Austin Art Garage has since shown works by over 100 local artists. The gallery's inventory changes weekly, and they currently represent between 30 and 40 artists at a time. In an effort to be as unintimidating and transparent as possible, the gallery's pieces always has prices attached. Austin Art Garage also keeps their entire inventory on their website so that anyone can shop for art without ever stepping foot into a gallery. The gallery's current pieces include Graham Franciose's storybook paintings, Michelle SaintOnge's screen-printed pieces, and Brian Phillips' salvaged wood art.
Inspired by the art he saw daily, Bryer eventually thought, "Hey, I want to play!" He began painting before finding his niche in photography. Using photographs taken in Europe, Bryer began digitally layering street scenes and landmarks with various textures, colors, and patterns. At one point, a designer for the Austonian took notice of Bryer's work and requested similar photos with Austin scenes and landmarks. While Bryer was originally hesitant, he enjoyed creating art to "reflect the epic feeling of Austin," and these pieces became a hit at the gallery. Bryer now has a studio where he builds his own picture frames and prints most of his work. "I put blood and sweat into the whole pieces," he said.
Austin Art Garage will be participating in the West Austin Studio Tour (WEST) this weekend. Both Bryer's and Ganucheau's studios, which are across the street from the gallery, will be open to the public. Additionally, artist Jason Eatherly will be painting a mural outside of the Austin Art Garage during WEST.
Summer 2012 Special Issue - Written by Bob Fonseca
Like many people trying to carve out a life in Austin, Tim Lasater has been through some “stuff.” He spent years as an engineer, toured with a band, got divorced and was an owner of a food trailer. This is only a partial list of the events that have shaped his life. But when injury forced him to the sidelines after just three months of a new job in the airline industry, Tim knew something had to change. In fact, he vowed at that moment to “surround himself with positive people.”
Today, Tim stands behind a small table. His focus is concentrated within the borders of a 10 x 10 wood panel. He is carefully icing the textured surface with streaks of blue paint rolling off the edge of a palette knife. Tim is in the zone. And he’s just one of the many emerging and established artists from the Austin Art Garage whose works grace the walls of many local homes, including my own.
Buying art for the home can be difficult. At least that’s what AAG brainchild Jake Bryer thought just a few years ago. The seed for the South Austin gallery-slash-studio was planted in New York City in the ’90s. Jake had moved in with a girlfriend only to find her ex-boyfriend’s art throughout the apartment, which didn’t sit well with him. “In exchange for taking it down, I promised her I would buy a new piece,” he recalled. And off to the galleries he went.
But Jake began to feel that trying to buy art “was like looking at a wine list with no prices. I was intimidated and felt like a peon.” It was at that moment he realized there was a market for a place “where a normal person could go and buy art.” Jake, originally from Houston, learned the ropes from his years in business and marketing at Texas State and working for the Austin Business Journal. “I was creative, but I had no art background,” he confessed. That’s where artist and business partner Joel Ganucheau came in.
Also a Houston transplant and Jake’s high school friend, Joel’s early art consisted of skateboard ramp plans, airplane drawings and flyers for friend’s bands. In the working world, he spent a lot of time with a large art print firm. That experience provided the knowledge and inspiration to pursue painting and printmaking on his terms. Uniting in Austin, Jake and Joel acted on a high school promise to someday work together, and in 2007 started the gallery. Austin Art Garage originally began as on online-only enterprise with a large archive of work.
Today, Austin Art Garage and its adjacent studio space sit humbly off South Lamar across from Manchaca. It is barely visible from the street. The parking lot is unpaved and the structure is truly garage-like. What it lacks in amenities is more than made up for with an enthusiastic staff, up front pricing, value, and art for almost every taste.
During a recent lunch at nearby Maria’s Tacos, I asked the three subjects why they felt art was so important to homeowners. “Art fills up a room with positive energy. It’s something you can touch. You can own a piece of an artist’s soul,” said Tim. I thought back about three months ago to when my wife and I scored our first “substantial” art piece from a gallery in Dallas. It was a large, original canvas from a New England artist named Robert Deyber. If you own Tom Petty’s Highway Companion CD then you already know his work. It was an exciting and personal experience. I spent hours on the road to pick it up. Even more time was spent carefully unpacking it, then carefully measuring and hanging the heavy piece on our bare living room wall. I went totally DIY and hung an eyeball light in the ceiling above it and spent an afternoon dialing it in.
One night, glass of wine in hand, I just stood and stared at all the detail within the painting’s simplicity. The colors seemed to jump off the illuminated canvas. I wondered about the man who, just months earlier, faced this canvas with brush in hand. Art in the home can transform, inspire and lift the spirit. But it still requires a certain amount of care and forethought. “If you are buying your art at the same time you are buying your furniture,” Jake offered, “you might not be happy with the results. Mix it up. Art should be collected over time. It should not look sterile.”
The biggest concern for many homeowners looking to embellish their dwelling with art is the cost. Art Garage’s pricing is not only up front, it’s designed to be downright affordable. Jake explained that new artists sort of compete for coveted gallery wall space to hang their works. The most popular artists usually receive the most space. The good news for homeowners and art lovers is that up and coming artists, looking to quickly develop a following, will price their paintings “too move.”
The Garage also stocks many of what they call “fireplace pieces. ” These images range from the abstract, to the whimsical, to iconic Austin street scenes (Joel’s specialty). Typically, they are large rectangular images that are hung across from a sofa or other prime seating area. “It better be your favorite piece,” Jake said. “And, they seem to be in much demand in the fall for some reason.” It was at this point in the conversation that Jake reminded me that lighting is always important when placing art.
Finally, I asked a question that has plagued me for years. Is art appropriate in a bathroom? And if so, what? Were the Crying Clowns on black velvet still in vogue? Is it insulting to the artist to be hung in such a “functional” location? Joel quickly offered, “Sure! Bathrooms deserve little speckles of art, too. Nothing too big though.”
Over the years, as I have visited the homes of friends and acquaintances, I have noticed three levels of art use. First, there is the mysterious bare walls approach. That look always elicits one of two questions from me: “Did you just move in?” or “Where are you moving to?”
In the middle of the spectrum, there is the default art position. This might be a print of an English foxhunt, a watercolor of the UT Tower, maybe a Spuds McKenzie poster from the ’80s, or a combination of these.
Then there are the homes that come alive with a variety of art, paintings and sculpture from real artists; perhaps mixed in with some cherished family photos. Each piece telling it’s own story of a time, a vacation, a negotiation or a discovery. Each work a separate conversation piece. These are homes where you find yourself effortlessly flowing from room to room to see what you might encounter next. These are the homes that feel alive. These are my favorite homes. I hope to someday have one.
Now, Austin Art Garage is just one of many quality art outlets in the Austin area. But it is one that caught my attention because of their relaxed attitude toward creating art, as well as selling it, which helps a novice like me. Besides, where else can you purchase an eye-catching piece of an artist’s soul for as little as $10?
February 02, 2009
Austin, Texas has long been known as one of the cultural captials of the world. It is a metropolitan city that prides itself on nurturing the arts from live music to painting and everything in between. Sometimes it seems that every other person you meet in Austin is some sort of creative spirit, unique and passionate as the city they live in. However, because of this intense saturation of artists in the area, it has created an extreme competition for space to exhibit one's work and that often leaves smaller, less well-known individuals undiscovered which, in and of itself, is a travesty. With this in mind, the co-founders of the Austin Art Garage have set out to expand the media coverage of these upcoming talents and give them a truly fantastic venue that they otherwise might not have the opporunity to participate in. Jake Bryer and Joel Ganucheau's vision is simple: make it easier to find and purchase original art without entering a world of debt and expose emerging artists while giving customers a no-hassle system to find and purchase a variety of affordable one-of-a-kind art works.They not only recognize the desperately needed promotion assistance new artists, but also, in this age of extreme economic hardship, the desire for more affordable artwork. Everyone would love to buy original art, but often it is simply a luxury which most cannot afford. The Austin Art Garage makes fine art affordable for the everyday fine art enthusiast.
Make no mistake, the work promoted by the Austin Art Garage, is no amature collection. These are artists who will no doubt be making a great impact on the cultural world with their bold and defiantly inspirational statements. The work is absolutely stunning and of a fascinating array of media and styles that is breathtaking. No doubt, there is something there for every taste from the extreme abstract to pop culture graphic to masterfully executed classical landscapes. Currently, nearly forty artists are represented by the gallery, all local emerging Austin talents, and the gallery is constantly adding to their portfolio of work.
January 31, 2009
"I went to a local art show the other day. I did a writeup of the show last Thursday. The show was fantastic. There was free beer, the atmosphere was great, and the artists were there to talk shop. I got to meet the owner's/artist's of the Austin Art Garage as well. They were good people for sure."
"If you are on a small budget like me and are looking to spice up your place with some original art then you may want to check out the Art Garage. Jake Bryer, Co-founder of the Austin Art Garage, had some wonderful pieces for sale starting at $10. I purchased a piece from Mr. Bryer. It should be arriving in a couple of days. I have always been a huge fan of Jimmy Cliff and now I got something to show my love for Ivanhoe Martin."
January 07, 2009
"This weekend my friend Thomas Walker and I ventured into a gallery around the corner called Austin Art Garage. I had heard about this once or twice before but was afraid it was going to be another one of those “junk” galleries with lots of passion but not a lot of - dare I say, talent, or appeal (to me). Believe me, I love the low-brow and underground art more than just about any other but just because it is in a gallery doesn’t mean it’s good. We were delighted to discover that the vast majority of the art in A.A.G was good. Actual skill was apparently involved and most even had a message or meaning that conveyed to even the two major art snobs who had just darkened their doorway. The heart of A.A.G is their aim to showcase only local talent – and a lot of it at once so everyone gets some exposure - but also at reasonable prices, keeping it accessible to all levels of collectors. This is the kind of gallery where buyers truly love the work for just what it is, without any lame aspirations of its value down the line."
"The walls are covered top to bottom in small to mid-size pieces that can be easily worked in to all sorts of locations in the home or office. Some of our favorites in the current exhibition are Graham Franciose, with an illustrators eye he reminded me of my friend Gris Grimly and his imaginative work. www.MadCreator.com (more on Gris in a future blog). Mario Jimenez Diaz and his amazing paintings that look like slightly blurred photographs, one with a bit of additional embellishment, which adds to the magic and fantasy of The Orange Patio. I have to say, my personal favorite in the entire collection was the work of Dan Grissom. His acrylic and Xerox transfers on wood panel kept grabbing me over and over again as I circled the space. I am sure we will end up with a Grissom in our collection before long. Joel Ganucheau also had some great graphic pieces, many of which had been reproduced in a charming 5” x 5” format, which could have great strength alone on a wall or several in a group, of course. I like the idea of a solitary piece though, as I feel it gives it more power and the image doesn’t get diluted. Thomas kept going back to the work of Justin Preston and Julie Isaacson, both skilled abstract painters who draw some influences from geometry and nature. Isaacson had more in the current show so I found myself returning to her work as well. I found the work of Adam Rader a real stand out. It was very similar in style to Grissom’s but instead of Xerox transfers, Rader sketches his subjects in charcoal and/or graphite. I found Grissom’s work more eye-catching but Rader’s work spoke to my soul. His images are ghostlike figures on an icy background. I could review and ramble about his work for several paragraphs I’m sure, but in the interest of holding your attention I will leave it at that for now. Check out Austin Art Garage’s site and get a preview, but if you’re in Austin please drop in and see these works in person."
I have a love/hate relationship with all things artistic. In a nutshell, it's that elitist mentality you generally find working behind the counter of your local record store or the art snob who's too pretentious for their own good. I received none of the attitude or unfriendliness when visiting today that would stop me from visiting the establishment again. In fact, I left with a few items I hadn't intended to purchase as a result of service received.
Where buying original art is concerned, I think a lot of people shy away from the thought of it as it often something that isn't easily accessible. Austin Art Garage provide a nice mix of originals and prints which work nicely with any budget.
Like Laura O., I generally tend to purchase something everywhere I roam so the collage created from the various experience reminds me of the adventures I've had. The place I've lived. The significant events which called for celebration. Regardless of the scenario, I know I can walk into Austin Art Garage and find a show that's going to fit.
A pleasant experience indeed.
I just loves me some Austin stuff that celebrates Austin by local Austin artists, which I can always find here. Love this place, especially the stuff by Jake Bryer, Judy Paul and and Joel Ganucheau - I just wish I had a bigger house so I had more walls to put this stuff on.
"It's true... Big things come in small packages! This place is a sweet little piece of Austin that everyone must see. I absolutely loved it and will be back for more and more. Within the walls of this lovely "garage" you will find some of the best artwork from Austinites ever. I fell in love with so many pieces it killed me to walk away. I want more!"
"Slightly addictive and possibly the best kept secret in Austin. Very affordable pieces and extremely helpful owners. Take a few minutes to stop by and see for yourself - I've bought a few pieces for my friends and for my own walls. Love their website too!"
November 14, 2008
Arriving at Austin Art Garage feels strikingly similar to pulling in the back driveway of someone’s house, right up until the doors to the studio swing open and reveal a collection of colors and patterns splattered across original pieces of art. Then you realize this is no ordinary garage."
“If we see any white space, we attack it,” co-owner Jake Bryer said. “We want you to be assaulted by colors when you walk in the door.”
Bryer and co-owner Joel Ganucheau founded Austin Art Garage in 2007 with two goals in mind: to provide a place for local, talented, emerging artists to display their art and to give art collectors a gallery with lots of accessible art at no-hassle, affordable prices.
“We are constantly fighting to maintain our mission,” Ganucheau said. “Artists from around the state have submitted pieces, and we have to say, ‘Sorry, as much as we like it, we’re 100 percent local.’”
The idea for the business venture came to Bryer when he set out to buy his first piece of art. After three weeks of visiting stuffy galleries with limited pieces on display at exorbitant prices, Bryer hatched the idea for the art garage.
Ganucheau was working for an art reproduction company when he received the call from Bryer. The two were childhood friends who used to skateboard together and had run into each other intermittently ever since.
“I have big ideas, but I’m not good at the details. Joel is great at that stuff. I knew I needed somebody like Joel in order for this to be successful,” Bryer said.
When the partners originally bought the space for their gallery, they figured if the art studio didn’t work out they could use it as a hangout to get away from their girlfriends. Both of them have since quit their full-time jobs, Ganucheau has married and the art garage is open to the public 40 hours a week.
“We had no idea how many people collected original, local art,” Ganucheau said. “This is Austin’s art at its raw core.”
Austin Art Garage has provided a stage for many artists to sell their first painting, an exhilarating experience for an emerging artist.
The gallery has even had a few artists outgrow them, something Ganucheau and Bryer are glad to see happen.
“We work really hard for the artists, and we expect them to work hard for us,” Bryer said. “We’re trying to have an ego-less gallery with ego-less artists.”
Click HERE to read the article.
Featured Gallery - March 2008
"Austin Art Garage got its start after Jake Bryer’s own frustrating search for affordable art. “I had $600, and I couldn’t find anything that I liked,” recalls the former Austin Business Journal advertising executive. “At galleries, I didn’t like not seeing the price. It’s kind of like asking the market price for lobster—if you need to ask, you probably can’t afford it.” At the same time, Bryer’s good friend Joel Ganucheau, an artist, had a garage full of paintings that he had never sold. “He had talent, but he didn’t understand the business side,” Bryer recalls. It was a problem Bryer imagined many artists had."
"Enlisting Ganucheau as his partner, Bryer decided to open a gallery. But in contrast to the galleries he had visited, he wanted the place to be “ego-less” and to specialize in “affordable art from emerging local artists.” The goal would be to keep 80 percent of the works priced at less than $500. The Austin Art Garage opened last fall in a garage-like room in a former South Austin lumberyard. About 250 pieces adorn every inch of the space, ranging from highly varnished mixedmedia pop art by Jessie Strub to the colorful, whimsical social commentaries of Cuban painter Luis Abreux."
Do You Have A Dream? Go For It. Jake Did!!! I love to see people follow their entrepreneurial dreams. Yesterday I got an email from my friend, Jake Bryer, announcing that he is leaving his job of six years to follow his dream and run his part-time art gallery full time.
About six months ago Jake and his friend, Joel Ganucheau, and started a weekend art gallery to expose local emerging artists and offer affordable original art work to the Austin community.
During this process they discovered how much Austinites love affordable original art from local artists. Consequently, what had started out as a fun weekend project has now evolved into a thriving business.
If you’re interested in their project, or finding affordable original art by Austin's hottest artists, please check out their 200+ art inventory (with full descriptions and pricing) at www.austinartgarage.com or stop by the Art Garage at 2200 S. Lamar Blvd (map & hours).
If you will be visiting Austin for sxsw....you should plan to visit the gallery.
Congratulations to Jake. We should all find ways to turn our dreams into reality.
Collecting art sounds like an out-of-reach pastime reserved for those that also hoard cars, houses and priceless jewels. For most of us, our wall decor consists of framed candids of friends and maybe a finger painting from an artiste of a niece.
Austin Art Garage believes that art connoisseurs come from all economic backgrounds and should be able to start their own collection no matter the depth of their pockets. Spotlighting local artists, this gallery space connects buyers to the Austin art world and keeps at least 80% of its inventory below $500.
Pull into the garage to peruse current inventory and start your own priceless acquisition.