The South Austin Popular Culture Center was founded in 2004. Most of the founders were formerly employed at Armadillo World Headquarters and had a special interest in the visual artwork that was created to promote Austin live music in the sixties and seventies, the era when the city’s musicians and visual artists first began creating original work that laid the foundation of Austin’s current reputation as a creative city.
One of the founders’ major concerns was the lack of a central repository where posters, prints, photographs and ephemera could be collected and preserved. Consequently, the founders incorporated the center as a tax-exempt 501-c-3 organization in 2005 and opened our current venue at 1516-B South Lamar.
Since that time, the center has organized over 40 exhibitions featuring work by Austin artists such as cartoonists Jack Jaxon and Gilbert Shelton, visual artist Jim Franklin, photographer Allan Pogue, visual artists Michael Priest, Bill Narum, Guy Juke, Henry Gonzalez, Danny Garrett, Kerry Awn, Powell St. John, Jesse Taylor and Bob Daddy-O Wade.
We currently present an annual season of 6-to-8 on-site exhibitions as well as annual off-site shows at the Armadillo Christmas Bazaar, SXSW and at Austin City Limits. The center’s South Austin venue also includes an outdoor stage, which features musical performances as part of our exhibitions’ opening night receptions.
The center’s board and staff have maintained personal contact with many of the artists who were part of the city’s initial period of creativity. Over the past years we have acquired several valuable collections of Austin posters from the late sixties.
The 2010 exhibit schedule includes such luminaries as Gilbert Shelton, megastar underground comic book artist and a massive tribute to the Vulcan Gas Company and the Armadillo World Headquarters.