Though Houston’s loaded with works by art-world heavyweights, there’s also a thriving grassroots scene. Start hunting for new wall purchases at Domy Books in Montrose, where you can find bargain drawings from local artists and ongoing movies and art installations on the patio. The edgy, campy DiverseWorks Art Space, housed in a warehouse near a knot of freeways to the east, specializes in collaborative performance-art pieces and mixed-media installations. Be sure to buy something from the Art-O-Mat, $5, and pick up a calendar to find out about upcoming barbecues and performances at satellite spaces around town. For evening entertainment, head over to the Aurora Picture Show, three miles north in Houston Heights, where you can watch avant-garde film series like the Extremely Shorts festival (June 30–July 1), featuring videos under three minutes. Finish up by trekking back to Montrose to the West Alabama Ice House (1919 W. Alabama St.; 713-528-6874), an artist-friendly dive with a no-frills vibe, a great patio, and cold, cold beers.
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5. An Oddball Day
Published on May 30, 2007 as a web exclusive.