(image courtesy of Cooler Gallery)

A Structure For Hope And Survival
Opening Tuesday, June 6 at Cooler Gallery, 7 pm to 10 pm. On view through June 30.

Artist Huy Bui has a penchant for constructing environments, and his latest creation to be brought to life at Navy Yard-adjacent art space Cooler Gallery is timely in its name: A Structure For Hope and Survival. Deemed a “framework of organizing artifacts, objects, art, tools, books, games, supplies, seeds, plants and provisions,” this “modular ecological unit” serves as a structure and container for anything you might need, from plants and seating areas to how-to books and emergency snacks. An artist statement indicates that a manual is in the works for anyone who might want to build one themselves. The opening reception on Tuesday will begin with a panel discussion entitled “Art and Architecture in the Anthropocene” with Bui, fellow artists, and people who have worked on projects like Playlab and the Lowline.

(image via SIGNAL)

Ahora Y Nunca
Opening Thursday, June 8 at SIGNAL, 6 pm to 9 pm. On view through July 9.

What if beloved pop star Selena was still with us? That is the alternate reality that Travis Boyer’s latest solo show exists in, as he creates a slew of materials and imagines them to be for the Selena Quintanilla Perez brand. Taking a page from the concept of occupational realism (framing more traditional labor-based occupations as “art”), he produces intricate hand-woven blankets in the hopes of fueling his “imagined economy” in which demand has been materialized by way of alternate reality.

Though this is largely about a fixation with the Tejano singer, the exhibition also serves as an autobiographical showcase for Boyer. In addition to the fabricated Selena merch, on display will be items from the artist’s personal archive, old paintings and sculptures, and whatever dusty stuff uncovered from his San Antonio storage unit that hadn’t been opened since 1995.

(image via Galerie Protege / Facebook)

Trompe L’oeil | The Constructed Image
Opening Thursday, June 8 at Galerie Protégé, 6 pm to 8 pm. On view through July 6.

The French term “trompe l’oeil” initially came into popular use during the Baroque period, referring to paintings and other two-dimensional art forms that used optical illusions to create a 3D effect. This creates a blurring of genres, in which a painting or drawing could have such a particular look that you might be fooled into thinking it was really a photo.

Nowadays, photos are everywhere. It’s common to hear cries of “Anyone can be a photographer!” as the iPhone 7’s portrait mode grants everyone the crisp gift that is depth of field. So, this group show consisting of work by six artists flips the age-old troupe l’oeil on its head. They will be using the medium of photography combined with a variety of creative interventions to “deceive” the viewer into thinking they might be looking at something else entirely. Nothing is real, folks.

(image via Jorge Andrew Gallery)

Luz Angelica Fernandez
Opening Saturday, June 10 at Jorge Andrew Gallery, 6 pm to 9 pm. On view through June 11.

If you’ve been to the Silent Barn lately, you might have seen the work of Luz Angelica Fernandez gracing the wall in mural form. Starting this Saturday, you can see her paintings in a gallery setting at Jorge Andrew Gallery on Union Avenue. Fernandez doesn’t merely work in paints; she also utilizes sculpture in the form of LED-based light boxes. This exhibition will showcase a series of acrylic works in addition to these light boxes.

Fernandez’s work lives in more of an abstract world, looking at times like a zoomed-in section of a bigger painting, with huge visible brushstrokes and tangible textures. This isn’t an accident; these aspects are crucial to her practice and she even has a journal where she notes “memorable color situations and textures from her daily experiences.”