Houston natives Abigail Haley and Ally Ondarza will celebrate the grand opening of Avant-Art Gallery on Sept. 23 on Houston's Gallery Row, 2625 Colquitt St., Houston, in the former location of Christopher Martin Gallery.

The new gallery—a soft opening for which took place over the summer—will showcase emerging and mid-career contemporary artists that work in a variety of mediums, including painting, sculpture, photography and mixed media, according to a September news release. Owners will also offer services such as art consulting, collection management and installation.

The gallery is named after the avant-garde art movement, Haley said in a statement, which is known for experimental works and aesthetic innovation.

“It encapsulates our gallery’s spirit of nurturing innovative and often boundary-pushing works by contemporary artists," Haley said. "To us, Avant-Art Gallery is more than a retail space for artwork; it is a conduit for unique perspectives and a place where the community can forge impactful connections with art.”

Haley and Ondarza said they will use the space to showcase more artists to help them reach a wider audience, including potential buyers. The owners will work in tandem with artists to identify pieces that meet buyer needs and on commissions of custom work, according to the release.

Artists with work at the gallery as of press time include:
  • Anna Sweet
  • Elaine Coombs
  • AJ Oishi
  • Jean-Philippe Piter
  • Jean-Paul Khabbaz
  • Whale Tail Project
  • Picchiarello Art
  • JL Meyer
  • Steve Wrubel
  • Amber Goldhammer
  • Chloe Hedden
  • Shawn Kolodny
  • Matt Neuman
  • Collazo Collection
  • Jeff Muhs
  • Christopher Martin
  • Christine Tonolini
  • Kinga Czerska
  • Liz Barber
  • Mary-Bennett Sigal
Haley and Ondarza said they also hope to revive Gallery Row Art Walks, events that allow participants to explore the variety of galleries in the area.

A grand opening exhibition will take place from 2-6 p.m. Sept. 23, while the celebration runs from 6-8 p.m.