Touts

Some recommendations on what to do, see and buy this month.

Future-Shocking Exhibition

Houston's Contemporary Arts museum takes the prize again for the new and different in experimental art. Beginning sometime in mid-December (the opening date had not been selected at press time) the museum will present the combined efforts of the futuristic-oriented Ant Farm, NASA, and the Texas Medical Center, in an exhibition entitled, "20/20 VISION: insight into life in the year 2020."

The 20/20 VISION exhibition includes architectural models, full-scale mock-ups, designs for new institutions, media predictions, and ideas concerning man's thoughts and perceptions in the 21st century.

The high point of the show may well prove to be "The Living Room of the Future," complete with home computer units, video, storage and display systems.

Contemporary Arts Museum/ 5216 Montrose/ Houston/ 526-3129/ mid-December thru month/ Tue thru Sat, 10-5; Sun, noon-6; closed Mon.

Corpus Christmas

When Christmas comes to Corpus Christi, the Christmas Tree Forest is an event almost as eagerly anticipated as the arrival of Santa's sleigh. Held at the noteworthy Art Museum of South Texas and sponsored by its Art Auxiliary, the annual event features 32 large and small trees decorated enthusiastically by local groups and individuals. This year's background theme will be "Once Upon a Christmas," represented by a mural of a Victorian England street scene.

At the same time, the museum will have an exhibit of Currier and Ives prints and the Hillman Collection to edify the expected 30,000 visitors.

Christmas Tree Forest/ Art Museum of South Texas/ 1902 North Shoreline Drive/ Dec 13 thru 27 except Christmas Day/ Tue thru Sat, 10-5, Sun 1-5/ Free.

Into the Woodwork

In this era of machine-mass-produced items we yearn to look at and feel things that are hand-crafted, carefully, and lovingly wrought. When we find them, unfortunately, they are often prohibitively expensive.

If you live in Austin and want to grace your dwelling with an elegant custom-made table or chair, bookcase or other furniture, you can commission Robert Kaler, a young architect and furniture craftsman.

His pieces feature clean lines, beautifully fitted joints, and fresh and natural ways of using various woods. You can choose from designs he has made or he will custom-make your piece. Because of its simplicity his furniture blends well with any decor you may already have. The precisely-calculated prices for his work are reasonable.

Robert Kaler/ 474-4862/ 1903B David Street/ Austin

Dial'em for Mystery

Radio drama is back, and it's neither camp nor nostalgia. Hollywood Radio Theatre's "Zero Hour," hosted by Rod Serling, provides 125-minute mystery dramas in five, half-hour daily chapters aired on WRR-AM in Dallas.

Beginning Mondays, each chapter ends with a cliff-hanger and winds up the "continuing story of suspense" on Friday. "The Zero Hour" has caught on with the Dallas area audience, judging from the number of calls to the station every Monday to find out how the last week's story ended.

"Zero Hour"/ 6:30 P.M. and midnight/ Mon thru Fri/ WRR-AM, 1310 KHZ/ Dallas.

Moles from The Underground

For less than two dollars, you can do much to remedy the shrinking phenomenon of your other dollars when you shop for adult and children's clothing, furniture, home accessories, housewares, stereo equipment, etc., in the Dallas-Ft. Worth or the Houston areas. Just spend your money on a copy of The Underground Shopper .

Two Dallas residents, Ann Light and Sue Goldstein, whose love of shopping became a full-time occupation provide you with the information necessary to shop for quality items. Although outlet and bargain shopping do not provide the same ambience that boutique or retail outlets often do, you can still find high quality merchandise with savings which vary from as little as 10 to as much as 80 per cent.

The Underground Shopper / Houston Area/ Dallas-Ft. Worth Area/ Available in Supermarkets, Bookstores, and Newsstands/ $1.95.

Witte Ideas For Gifts

The gift shop at San Antonio's Witte Memorial Museum is likely to solve any Christmas shopping problems for those persons on your list who have nearly everything. It has the things other places don't: pre-Columbian burial pots and figure fragments; handwoven baskets from the People's Republic of China, Taiwan, Bangladesh, Nigeria, and the Texas-Alabama Coushatta Indians; barbed wire, spurs and branding irons from the Old West; amber and Venetian trading beads; appliqued mollas and textiles from the Cuna Indian women in San Bias, Panama; fish fossils, mineral and rocks; semi-precious stones of amethyst, smoky and river-tumbled quartz, turquoise, Brazilian agate, and optic calcite; shells, and Christmas decorations and ornaments from El Salvador, Peru, India, Nepal, and Pakistan sold from the shop's Christmas tree.

Witte Memorial Museum Gift Shop/ 3801 Broadway/ San Antonio/ 828-0647/ Mon thru Fri 9-5; Sat & Sun 10-6.

Back In the Saddle Shop

The fabled King Ranch in South Texas has something to offer beyond oil, Santa Gertrudis cattle, and 825,000 acres of South Texas. It has also spun off the Running W saddle shop, which offers in addition to custom-made saddles and leather goods a line of canvas products useful to city dwellers as well as ranch hands.

Some of the items available are an overnight bag ($32.50) with single full length zipper, leather handles, and trim; a rope bag purse ($20 to $26); an imported willow basket six bottle carrier ($37); a leather-covered shotgun shell box that holds 16 boxes of shells; and hunting chaps ($32.50). Many of the items can also be found in big-city luxury gift shops, but the markup there can run as much as 40 per cent higher than the Running W's own prices. A letter or phone call to manager Jim Sedwick will get you the details on ordering by mail.

Running W Saddle Shop/ 512-592-6811/ P.O. Box 1477/ Kingsville, Texas.

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