Arts / Galleries

Civil Rights Lawyer Turned Art Gallery Owner is Finally Opening the Doors to His Long-Awaited Show

Randall Kallinen Gives Houston Artists a Chance to Tackle COVID

BY // 05.06.21

If the pandemic has taught us anything, it’s patience and perseverance. No one knows this better than civil rights attorney Randall Kallinen, owner of Kallinen Art Gallery, and one of the most colorful characters in Houston’s art world. He’ll finally see his goal realized this Saturday, May 8 at 7 pm, when he opens the doors to his long-delayed juried exhibit.

Themed as artists responding to COVID, it’s appropriately titled “The Show Must Go On.”

Randall Kallinen, civil rights attorney and artist in front of his gallery, law office and home, Kallinen Contemporary. Photo by Thomas B. Shea
Randall Kallinen, Civil Rights attorney and artist, in front of his gallery, law office, and home, Kallinen Contemporary. (Photo by Thomas B. Shea)

Perhaps due to his attorney mindset, Kallinen covered all bases to ensure that the show takes place. Originally scheduled to open last July, the attorney/gallerist reset its opening five times. He set optional dates for the event, since COVID restrictions make everything hard to predict, and even included successors in his will to keep the show going in case the worst were to happen to him.

The show offers a response to COVID-19 and its many aspects.

“There is much hope, blame, fear, sadness, helplessness,” Kallinen tells PaperCity. “The whole gamut of human emotions. The artists can and will use these emotions to produce work reflective of these times.”

The open-call exhibition encompasses all media including painting, sculpture, video and performance art.

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“The Show Must Go On” is juried by acclaimed Houston muralist Daniel Anguilu, whose talent can be seen on walls from downtown to the East End and, most recently, at Arowyn Studios on Sherman Street, a house of worship turned artist studios. At Arowyn, Anguilu draws inspiration from his Mexican heritage for his Aztec-influenced mural that resembles stained glass, and takes over the entire side of the former church’s entrance.

Daniel Anguilu, Houston Muralist and artist, will be a juror for "The Show Must Go On."
Houston muralist Daniel Anguilu jurors “The Show Must Go On,” opening Saturday, May 8, 7 to 10 pm at Kallinen Art Gallery. (Photo by Shunelett Myintthu)

First, second and third place honors will be awarded. Artists can submit three works of art each with no entry fee and can expect a 50/50 split with the gallery on any sales.

Confirmed artists to date: JJ Baker, Eugene Barron, Joe Belmarez, Devon-Britt Darby, Gloria Choukeir, Steve Carpenter, PK Das, Mark Deitrich, Rachel Dupuis, Dee Franklin, Sarah Gish, Michael Gracia, Guillotte, Alejandro Gutierrez, Saida Hag, John Paul Hartman, Randall Kallinen, Solomon Kane, Adam Land, Ernest Lizcano, John Long, Gloria Mata, Mic McAllister, Sherry McKnight, Archie Moore, Dune-Micheli Patten, Cherie Salinas, A.M. Schaer, fluX Scorpio, Stephen Smith, Juliana Villareal, Angela Walling and Alex Wilhite.

“The Show Must Go On,” on view at Kallinen Art Gallery, 511 Broadway Street, May 8 to June 19. The opening night reception is this Saturday, May 8, from  7 to 10 pm. More details here

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