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Sneak peek: Holler for the Waller Creek Show 2017

Light installations along waterway inspire and enthrall

A young girl touching glowing colorful sculpture
Installation from the 2016 Waller Creek Show
Courtesy of Waller Creek Show

It’s now unofficially official: The opening night of Waller Creek Show Friday, full of fun and spectacle, marks the end of Austin Design Week and heralds the arrival of the East Austin Studio Tour, which starts Saturday—thus amping up the creative intensity on display in November to a remarkable level.

Now in its fourth year, the Creek Show is, of course, plenty spectacular on its own. Every year around this time, light installations created by local artists, architects, and landscape architects are placed above, below, and in the creek between Fifth and Eighth streets. The show is up every night for a week or so and draws hundreds of visitors to experience the promenade along the creek, all gussied up and sparkly. It’s really quite a wonder to behold.

Sponsored by the Waller Creek Conservancy, the show is intended to bring attention to the Waller Creek Restoration Project, an ambitious plan to revitalize the creek on many levels, including flood control, pedestrian pathways, and native plant and wildlife restoration.

This year’s show starts tonight (Friday, Nov. 10) and runs through Saturday, Nov. 18, 6pm-10pm every night. It will feature six installations, which you can get an idea of from the renderings below.

No Lifeguard on Duty by Asakura Robinson
All renderings courtesy of Waller Creek Show

Programming around the Creek Show seems to expand every year, in a good way. The Friday kick-off will feature a live DJ on the creek, and opportunities to participate in hands-on, family-friendly activities will be available every night at the Sabine Tree Deck between 6:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.

Blind Spot by Two+ Collaborative
fotan FABLE by HA Architecture

In addition, Thinkery will be onsite Fridays and Saturdays, and the Creek Show Lounge at 700 East Sixth Street will offer opportunities for an immersive experience including interactive entertainment, a Creek Show photo booth, a display of the Waterloo Park model, and more. Visitors can also get Creek Show wristbands for food and drink specials from participating businesses in the Red River Cultural District, many of which help make the show possible.

Ephemeral Suspension by PATHOS + TouchTo

Submerge by Davey McEathron Architecture + Studio Lumina + Drophouse

Other activities planned for the week are listed below.

• Tuesday, Nov. 14, 6:30-8:30 p.m., at the Palm Door on Sabine Street, offers a chance to meet the design teams at the Creek Show Artist Talk, moderated by arts critic Jeanne Claire Van Ryzin. The event is free, but RSVP is required.

• Thursday, Nov. 16, 6:00-9:00 p.m., at The Gatsby, Generation Waller will put on a Monster Bash with a silent auction and raffle to support Waller Creek Conservancy.

• Saturday, Nov. 18, 3:30-5:30 p.m., there will be an art-centric tour that starts at The Contemporary—Laguna Gloria, passing by the Waller Delta, and wrapping up at Creek Show.

• Saturday, Nov. 18, 6:00-9:00 p.m., the closing party will take place at Cheer Up Charlies.