We dare you to try to look away from the works in Perspectives 166: Torsten Slama at the Contemporary Art Museum Houston. The art might make you uncomfortable but not so uncomfortable you can look away. The first solo museum exhibition of the Austrian-born, Berlin-based artists work, Perspectives 166 includes 35 large drawings, paintings and airbrush-on-paper works that depict post-apocalyptic worlds where familiar objects meet imaginary situations. In Cryogenic Institute Wilhelm Reich, a big-box store seems to be adrift in a vacant, scarred terrain. In the especially creepy The Walt Whitman Memorial Refinery, a flipped-over car, its windshield in pieces, sits before a seemingly abandoned industrial facility adjoined by a large statue of the poet. Much like the surrealist work of Salvador Dalí, the images within are at once familiar and absurd, humorous and haunting. Hear Slama speak at the opening reception at 6:30 p.m. Thursday. Regular viewing hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Thursdays, and noon to 5 p.m. Sundays. Through July 26. 5216 Montrose. For information, call 713-284-8250 or visit www.camh.org. Free.
Tuesdays-Sundays. Starts: May 15. Continues through Aug. 2, 2009