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Arts

Sawyer Yards is Throwing a Mega Art Party as it Expands

Former Halliburton Plant to Become a New Creative Haven

BY // 04.23.18

A blowout worthy of one of the largest working communities of artists in the nation – speaking, of course, of Sawyer Yards, the 55-plus acre site that sits at the heart of Houston’s historic First Ward neighborhood near downtown – the Spring Biannual Art Stroll goes down this Saturday, April 28. The mega art event begins at 4 pm and runs through 9 pm at six participating sites: Winter Street, Silver Street, Summer Street, Spring Street, and the new Sabine Street Studios, and, of course, the Silos at Sawyer Yards.

Thousands of works from more than 300 artists will be on view and available to buy, including museum-exhibited names such as Artadia award-winning Kaneem Smith and the mid-career assemblage artist Claire Cusack. They will be joined by emerging talents such as John Hovig, Erik Hagen and Diane Gelman.

The studios mirror the diversity of Houston, including artists such as Soody Sharifi and Fariba Abedin, whose works comment on their cultural history as Iranian-Americans.

The diverse media encompass painting, sculpture, ceramics, photography, jewelry, collage and more — and will be up for acquisition at the popular free event. The spring stroll also doubles as an exciting opportunity to meet artists, see their spaces, and explore the repurposed and historic Sawyer Yards campus.

Sawyer Yards consists of businesses, gallery spaces, dining, and entertainment concepts, all activated through a constant series of events, show openings, art festivals, and more. Recently, the FotoFest Biennial took place there.

The Washington Arts District welcomes an eighth building to the landmark Sawyer Yards arts complex – Sabine Street Studios, 48,000 square feet of warehouse and studio space nestled in the turn-of-the-century residential and commercial area that’s now become a cultural destination.

Proprietor of The Deal Company — a primary developer of Sawyer Yards — Jon Deal bought the Sabine Street Studios warehouse in 2016 and has spent the past two years redesigning, repurposing, and thoughtfully renovating the former Halliburton manufacturing plant.

At the crossroads of Silver and Spring Street at 1907 Sabine, the new studios join The Silos and other reclaimed industrial buildings that all told provide work and art space for more than 400 creators, making Sawyer Yards one of the largest creative communities in America.

The finished Sabine destination houses 67 studio spaces, leased by artists and entrepreneurs alike.

Happily, the first public look at Sabine Street Studios coincides with the Sawyer Yards Spring Biannual Art Stroll.

“We’re excited about the way Sawyer Yards continues to evolve as an arts and entertainment destination in Houston’s urban center,” Deal says. “The heartbeat of Sawyer Yards is its creative community and we’re pleased to welcome even more artists and creative businesses with the opening of Sabine Street Studios.”

The developer continues:

“Creating a place where artists can thrive and collaborate is where the vision started and, as the popularity of the campus has grown, we have added dining, fitness, and retail concepts to enhance the Sawyer Yards experience for tenants and visitors.”

After the Art Stroll wraps, the good news is the monthly Second Saturdays at Sawyer Yards continue. The second Saturday of each month, this dynamic, ever-evolving art nexus throws open its doors for insider peeks into the studio practice of Houston’s cultural community. There’s always an opportunity to add an acquisition to your walls.

Additional reporting by Catherine D. Anspon.

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