The first interactive art gallery in West Texas is about to open in Lubbock

The gallery is part of The Weird Space art shop and is scheduled to open in January.

By Sarah AschNovember 16, 2023 11:17 am, ,

When you go to museums, do you secretly wish you could touch the art? 

If that’s you, we might have the perfect place to visit.

Interactive art galleries are designed to be fully immersive, where people can touch the installation and experience it through multiple senses. Next year, Lubbock is set to welcome the first interactive gallery in West Texas. 

The gallery will take up 2,000 square feet of The Weird Space in central Lubbock, which is already open as a gift shop and makerspace for local artists. Items currently on sale include jewelry, enamel pins and prints.

Destiny Adams, left, and Sam Gaitan are co-founders of the Weird Space. Sarah Asch / Texas Standard

Co-founders Sam Gaitan and Destiny Adams said their goal is to open the gallery in January.

“It’s important that we’re building the art community here as well,” Adams said. “I know a lot of people think Austin and San Antonio are the biggest art places, but we have huge art festivals here in Lubbock, plus tons of local artists, and we kind of give them a home here.”

Gaitan is an artist herself, and has experience working on interactive art exhibits. 

“(This) is something that I’ve wanted to do for a long time. I finally feel like we have enough of a supportive base that we could try and launch something like this where it wouldn’t fall flat on its face,” Gaitan said.

“The story of The Weird Space, it’s getting a little bit teased out right now, but it is the conservatory. So it is a place that stories come to or that have been drawn to that are at risk of fading away or being forgotten or over time being misconstrued. And the librarian has brought them here to try and save them through the audience.”

Visitors to the gallery become characters in the story itself, Adams said. 

“When you first visit the gallery, what you should expect is to fully immerse yourself in art,” she said. “You are now a character in our realm, in our world, and we want you to take time to learn about the new world that you’re in and the story that you’re now a part of. Because each person that is going through this gallery becomes part of our story, because then they get to bring those stories to life and retell them and come back and bring friends and family so that these stories stay alive.”

Sarah Asch / Texas Standard

Adams grew up in Lubbock and said she feels strongly about providing artistic spaces in her hometown.

“Me and my husband traveled for six years all over the country working in politics before we opened a business back home here in Lubbock,” she said. “We were born and raised here. So in high school, of course, we were like, We need to get out. And everywhere we went, we always came back home. But what that did for us is we got to experience all these big cities and bring that back to our home.”

Gaitan said she has similar motivations. 

“It’s always been a huge thing with me that if you can’t leave it, you make it better. And Lubbock has the potential to be a huge art community, has the potential to be like other big cities and everything,” she said.

“The mindset has always been you have to leave to do the things you want with art, music and everything. We have enough talent and room to grow here so that we can be just like them. So it’s always been trying to push. If other cities have something, we can have it too. It is to try to expand us and grow us to be more up to their standards, because I believe we have capability.”

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