Since his arrival in Houston five years ago to jury a Lawndale Big Show, Paul Middendorf has carved out a spot of importance and great charm. His GalleryHomeland is not only home to some of the best exhibitions we’ve seen in a commercial gallery this year — the two-person show for Houston emerging talents Iva Kinnaird and Bret Shirley stands out — but the dealer’s melding of nonprofit and gallery is innovative and makes for highly adventuresome viewing.
Now with two Commerce Street spaces, Middendorf is poised to take over the town. We’re not alone in noting that this artist/curator of happenings and odd moments of excitement stole the spotlight at the recent Houston Fine Art Fair with his deer stand as salon/installation/performative sculpture, complete with Frenchy’s fried chicken and a bar tucked into a vintage Samsonite-style suitcase. Up recently: Galveston-based Nick Barbee’s “Ask Forgiveness” at GalleryHomeland and part two of Barbee, “Good Riddance,” new paintings, at brand-new performance/project space HomeCore, inaugurating the series, “The Parlor.” Showing now: cult classic Mark Ponder, pushing notions of the taboo, including Ponder Parlor (through December 20).
GalleryHomeland, 2327 Commerce St.; HomeCore, 2010 Commerce St., 503.819.9656