When Travis Huse and his friend launched Big Ass Canvas three years ago, it was a small project aimed to introduce art into a public space and encourage the community to unite and interact through creation. Through its events, Big Ass Canvas encourages people to collaborate on giant canvases that are then auctioned off for charity. But what started as two guys hauling art supplies to bars has evolved into something much bigger: a bona fide gallery.
“It was supposed to be three events, just for fun, to see how people would receive it,” Huse says. “It wasn’t supposed to be this big thing, but people loved it.”
While Big Ass Canvas, which showcases the contemporary works of around 30 local artists, spent the better part of the year on Colorado Street, Huse has decided to adopt a pop-up model, and the gallery is slated to re-open this fall in a yet-to-be-determined downtown locale. But though the location will be different, the gallery still hopes to allow more artists to transition to full-time and to help facilitate the growth of the Austin visual art scene.
“The traditional model of a gallery is dead, in my opinion,” says Huse. “We’re not a stuffy, pretentious gallery, so we’re trying to start something more appealing to the masses. New space, new crowd … new energy.” Find more information on Big Ass Canvas here and browse visual musings on Instagram @bigasscanvas.