Mid-Week Intermission Friend Edition: Origin Studio House
Happy New Year, Austin! As you’re settling into your 2023 routine, you might be wondering… what’s a cool spot I can add to my hangout map? We’ve got just the place! Part coffee shop, part bar, part event space, Origin Studio House serves up eclectic vibes on the east side. Get to know the founders and the space in this Mid-Week Intermission 👇 and if you’re joining us for Ta-Nehisi Coates on January 16th, you might see them there, too!
Origin Studio House is a community space rooted in Black culture that offers coffee, food, cocktails, and events, but most importantly connection. “We aim to bring a new experience to Austin and the Black communities who live, work, and invest in this city,” says Origin co-founders Brittney Williams & Dante Clemons.
HOW IT STARTED
In 2021, Austin’s Black population reached 7.57%, a fractional yet noteworthy jump from 2020’s percentage of 7.25%. We all know Austin is growing, but the growth of the city overall pales in comparison to the continual rise of its Black demographic. Dante and Brittney saw this spike in growth as an opportunity to start addressing a clear need in their community — not seeing themselves reflected in the city where they lived. With this in mind, they planned a series of pop-up events starting in 2021.
Last November, they kicked off their inaugural event, “Come Thru,” at Distribution Hall in East Austin. Attendees enjoyed cocktails, portraits sessions, delicious food, and music spun by a DJ. In March of 2022, they hosted another successful event called “Come Up” in partnership with The Contemporary and SOHO House Austin. Come Up enticed guests with delicious cuisine, libations, and panel discussions moderated by renowned chef Tavel Bristol-Joseph of Emmer & Rye. Origin Studio House opened its Grounds to the public this Fall.
Get to know the founders
Brittney Williams is a native Austinite, and co-founder of Studio VYB, a full service interior design studio based in Austin, Texas. She’s an expert in hospitality design, cultural curation, and storytelling. Some of Brittney’s notable design contributions include Swedish Hill in Austin, TX, Clark’s Oyster Bar in Aspen, CO, Joann’s Fine Foods in Austin, TX, Outdoor Voices in Los Angeles, and several custom luxury residences for high-profile celebrity clients. Brittney majored in Urban Studies under Eugene Lang at The New School.
Dante Clemons, a resident of East Austin, is a global product leader, adviser, and strategist at the intersection of design, commerce, culture, and community. Born and raised in New Orleans, Louisiana, Dante graduated from Louisiana Tech University with a Bachelor of Architecture, graduated summa cum laude from Pratt Institute’s graduate Design Management Program and serves on the Board of The Contemporary Austin. A strategist focused on digital production across platforms and the management of innovation in organizations, her experience includes work in advertising, e-commerce & retail, architectural planning, and the arts. Her clients have spanned Nike, Twitter, Michael Kors, Pfizer, The Coca-Cola Company, and New York City’s Metropolitan Museum of Art. She is also the founder of KICKINTHADOOR, a consultancy company aiding job seekers in pursuit of a rewarding career.
WHAT IT’S ALL ABOUT
Origin Studio House is more than a coffee shop — it serves as a cultural space forged by the need to provide safe spaces where communities could thrive, allowing folks from all walks of life to see themselves reflected in the city where they live.
Origin Studio House is committed to being a kinetic space that celebrates Black culture and provides opportunities for networking and collaboration across Austin’s cultural landscape.
Give Origin a follow on Instagram @originstudiohouse to stay in the loop on upcoming events, and check out their website to learn more about their mission.
At the Long Center, we’ve always got a new partnership or something cool we know you’ll want to check out! Find and follow us @longcenter on your social media platform of choice, and we’ll see you real soon.