Monday, January 06, 2014

Dallas Outing

We had a great family outing to downtown Dallas last week. We started with brunch at Lark on the Park which has original giant chalk illustrations on the wall that change with the season.

Here is their "lark" logo etched on the glass door. Cool to view through the door to the trees and building beyond.

Yarn bombing at the new Klyde Warren Park, built on a giant slab over the freeway -- an excellent new addition to Dallas since we've been away.

Lots of outdoor seating at the park... to cold to linger on the day we were out.

Here's the infamous Museum Tower, also new since we moved to Dallas. The glass windows are reflecting into Nasher Sculpture Center and scorching everything in the garden and altering the light filtered through the stunning architectural roof at the museum. Not good.

We also visited the Dallas Museum of Art which now has free admission! That's a change since we last lived in Dallas. It was packed with all kinds of energy, people and excitement. Another exciting change is the new DMA Friends program where you can enter special codes into the kiosks in the museum (or text them to the DMA number) and earn points.

There's a different code for every gallery you visit, a code if you came with a group, made some art in the kids center, watched a film, strolled through the sculpture garden, made a donation... anything and everything!

What can you do with the points you earn? Pay for parking, get discounts in the cafe, redeem them for exhibit catalogs and even get tickets for special exhibits.

We were there for about an hour and I had enough points to get a ticket to the two paid exhibits -- a $32 value! How fun is that? It really is one of the most innovative, interactive, hi-tech, engaging, rewarding programs I've ever seen. I can hardly wait to go back and earn more points  see more art!

I only had time to walk through one of the special exhibits, Jim Hodges: Give More Thank You Take. It was awesome. I loved perusing everything. The DMA also has audio bits that are easy to listen to on your phone.

His work incorporated everything from mirrors, old sheet music, chiffon scarves, fake flowers, glass, denim, embroidery, gold foil, chain, and altered books. You can see why I'd like it, right?

Here's a photo from the museum blog that shows the entrance of the exhibit. On the left is an installation of fake flowers and the colorful overlapping grid toward the back is created from chiffon scarves.

At the Center for Creative Connections (the kids' area at the DMA), there is an interactive project where you can make a button, then hang it on the wall and take someone else's button. It's a tie-in to Hodge's exhibit theme. Here is the button Benjamin made.

And here is the button I took home with me. I'm imagining a child drawing that stick figure and a parent adding the heart and the scalloped border. I love it!

Other highlights at the museum included Benjamin *recognizing* a Deibenkorn painting in the contemporary gallery. We saw his Ocean Park series at the Corcoran in DC with Kristin LaFlamme and her kids. Apparently he was absorbing and paying attention, even though he acted like he didn't want to be there. Ahem.

I also really liked the Stephen Lapthisophon exhibit titled "Concentrations 56: coffee, seasonal fruit, root vegetables and selected poems." I'm not sure I really liked any of the art, but it certainly made me think about format and techniques in creating mixed media pieces.

We stopped at Dairy Queen for blizzards on the way home. Delish!

1 comment:

Kristin L said...

What an awesome outing. You're making me want to come to Dallas! The Rhinoctopus chalk drawing is too cool! The museum bribery program is ingenious. I think it's a great idea to reward visitors for staying longer and engaging more with the art. Way better than the piddling rewards I'm supposed to be getting with my typical store loyalty cards.