The Blanton Museum of Art: Located at the University of Texas at Austin, 200 E. Martin Luther King Blvd. at Congress, this is an impressive museum that you should definitely visit. Its collections include contemporary art, modern American and Latin American art, and Renaissance and European art. They also have The Wilkinson Center for Prints and Drawings, an appointment only study room.
Recently opened at the Blanton is Ellsworth Kelly’s Austin, his final work, that is a 2,718 sq. ft. chapel with colored class windows. I am excited to visit it on my next trip.
If you like history, the Texas State History Museum is across the street.
Harry Ransom Center: Located near the Blanton Museum at the University of Texas, at 320 W. 21st St., is an internationally known humanities research library and museum. Their holdings provide a record of the creative process which includes writers, artists and designers in the areas of literature, photography, film, performing arts and art. They have a large exhibition space which features special exhibitions, as well as a display of an original Guttenberg Bible and a display of the first photograph, View From the Window at Le Gras by Joseph Niepce, which was from 1826-27 and was a heliograph on pewter. I saw a great design exhibition on the work of Norman Bel Geddes. For those interested in photography they have a special group called the Friends of Photography which has special events.
The Contemporary Austin/The Jones Center: Located at 700 Congress in downtown Austin, this is a contemporary designed renovation that has exhibition space, a film gallery and a rooftop deck that offers a rooftop film series.
Mexic-Arte Museum: Down the street from The Contemporary Austin is this small museum, at 419 Congress, that is dedicated to traditional and contemporary Mexican and Latin American Art. I saw an interesting exhibition of Day of the Dead Altars.
Laguna Gloria/Gatehouse Gallery, at 3809 W. 35th Street: This is The Contemporary Austin branch located on Lake Austin. The small museum is located in an historic villa with beautiful grounds. The Gatehouse Gallery presents an exhibition series presenting projects by Texas artists. There is also a well-known art school offering classes throughout the year.
Next time I will make it a point to visit the LBJ Presidential Library at 2313 Red River St.