Midtown Gallery Has a Bold Red Landmark Once Again

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Good news for all you lost art lovers -- Gallery Sonja Roesch has a new red landmark to help you find your way.

For much of last year, the light gray Midtown space at 2309 Caroline St., was instantly recognizable thanks to the presence of a 35-foot sculpture by John Henry in its front yard. That piece accompanied an exhibition by the artist at the space, so eventually, it was time for it to move on. As a result, visitors have been missing their red landmark for the past few months now.

"Drivers say, 'I don't know where to turn anymore,'" said gallery owner Sonja Roesch.

Well, the gallery is landmark-less no more. On Tuesday, artist Mac Whitney was on hand to install two sculptures -- both red, nonetheless -- and fill the gallery's front-yard void.

The installation was no easy task. Both works weigh in at more than 3,000 pounds and are so tall, a crane had to lift them over the block's power line. But after a couple of hours, the two steel sculptures -- Escobas, the shorter one on the left, and Carrizozo -- were firmly in place.

"Some galleries are not interested in big sculpture -- it's very expensive and there are a lot of logistics involved," said Roesch. "But it really enhances the space and makes it a landmark."

After previously displaying two sculptures by out-of-town artists in the front yard space -- the abstract, red sail-like piece by Tennessee's Henry and, before him, the red, coiling steel pipes by New York artist John Clement -- Roesch was especially excited to share the work of Texas's own Whitney, who has a studio near Ovilla outside of Dallas. Around these parts, he's also the man behind the 50,000-pound red sculpture appropriately called Houston in Stude Park.

Despite weighing more than three tons collectively, the works in front of Sonja Roesch have a lightness and elegance as they reach up toward the sky. Escobas will eventually be displayed during the Houston Fine Art Fair at Reliant Center in September, while Carrizozo will coincide with a solo show of Whitney's at Sonja Roesch in January, which will feature his paintings and, of course, his sculpture.

"He's been a prolific artist for more than 40 years," said Roesch. "He's very focused on inventing new sculptural forms."

For more information, call 713-659-5424 or visit the gallery's website.

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