Posts Tagged 'Dallas Museum of Art'

The Canines Behind the Canvas

Dogs are said to be man’s best friend, but can they also be his muse? The following artists sure thought so! These four-legged friends were never far from their master’s side, eager to give a bark of approval for work well done or a shake of the muzzle to try again, and, in dire circumstances, to lend their tail as an extra paint brush. These furry entourages inspired, encouraged, and lent a paw whenever they could to their famous owners. Happy National Dog Day to the creative canines behind the canvas!

David Hockney with his models, Stanley and Boogie


Georgia O’Keeffe getting some air with her fluffy chow companions


Jackson Pollock taking a breather with Gyp and Ahab


Pablo Picasso adventuring with his beloved dachshund Lump


Andy Warhol with his favorite army candy . . . his dachshund Archie


Frida Kahlo with her hairless, but not heartless, Xoloitzacuintli dogs


Julie Henley is the Communications and Marketing Coordinator at the DMA.

Appily Ever After

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Once upon a time, in a kingdom called the Dallas Museum of Art, a group of talented young wizards from the nearby land of Pariveda decided to create an enchanted portal. Far better than your run of the mill magic mirror, the portal gave all, far and wide, a glimpse into 5,000 years of the realm’s riches. Royalty and peasants alike could go behind castle lines with specially curated content like audio tours and insider guides, all without fear of being thrown into the dungeon. Word of mouth and carrier pigeons became practically obsolete with the portal’s interactive map, filterable calendar, favorites queue, and instant social media sharing. If that weren’t enough,  with a mere shake of their scrolls a random treasure would pop up to explore!

The wizards saw how much joy the portal brought the kingdom and decided to share it with all. They named their creation the DMA app and made it available on iOS devices!

And they all lived APPily ever after . . . Download today to experience the wonder.

Meet the Wizards:

Reed Correa
Texas A&M University, Management Information Systems
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Hey there! In building the DMA app, I worked to pull back artwork in the permanent collection, displaying details about that artwork, and displaying tour media information. My favorite work in the Museum is probably the Sporting Cup designed by Ashbee. I came across it while testing the search function. There are a number of cups and they became my favorite search. I love the turquoise color on it!

Philip Gai
Baylor University, Computer Science
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Hi! My central tasks in building the DMA app were developing the home page, the exploration guide pages, and the shake for a random art piece feature. After working with so much art information for the guides, I definitely came to appreciate art in a new way. The Wittgenstein Vitrine is definitely my favorite artwork at the DMA!

Nick Graham
University of Oklahoma, Computer Science
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Hi! I created the “At the Museum” page, which gives an overview of events on the DMA calendar. Additionally, I worked to make audio-video tour content accessible from the app. I enjoyed the opportunity to work in this unique environment with so many beautiful works of art. During this summer, I have grown to especially like the Wittgenstein Vitrine and Piet Mondrian’s Windmill.

Derik Hasvold
Brigham Young University, Provo, Information Systems
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Hi! Helping build the DMA’s mobile app was fantastic. One thing I worked on is the ability to filter through the Museum’s art collection to find artwork you are interested in. This feature helped me realize one thing: I love sculptures! There are some sweet sculptures in the Sculpture Garden; some of my favorites are Willy and Dallas Snake. If it weren’t for this amazing app, this is something I might never have discovered.

Mary Kate Nawalaniec
University of Notre Dame, Electrical Engineering
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Hey! I primarily worked on the Map features for the app. During our time at the DMA, Samantha Robinson was gracious enough to give us the history behind the Wittgenstein Vitrine. She provided interesting insight into the process of acquiring and restoring art pieces. I have a greater appreciation for the work curators do to track down pieces like the vitrine. It’ll be hard to top having the DMA as office space!

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Julie Henley is the Communications and Marketing Coordinator at the DMA. 

Collection Connection: Then and Now

Just last week the Museum released the DMA app, allowing visitors to engage with the collection, but the Museum has a long history of using technology to enhance the learning experience.

Students working with "Artifacts," the Museum's interactive computer video program during "The Shogun Age" in 1984.

Students working with Artifacts, the Museum’s interactive computer video program during The Shogun Age in 1984.

The first efforts began in 1984 when the DMA launched Artifacts (not to be confused with the 21st century version of Artifacts – the DMA Member magazine), a suite of interactive video computer programs that provided visitors a one-on-one learning experience for the Museum’s permanent collection and special exhibitions. “Combining visual images, through the use of video, with the stored information and access capability of a computer, a simple user-friendly system has been developed. Artifacts enable to the user to become involved with the program content rather than the mechanical operation of the machine, by the use of a light pen placed directly on a video monitor screen.”(DMA Bulletin, Summer 1984, page 27) Through Artifacts visitors were able to access information not available on text labels in the galleries providing context and greater appreciation of the artworks.

Today, a team of staff and intern programmers from Pariveda Solutions created the interactive app over the summer. Mary Mills, Administrator of Visual Resources, created Artifacts after two years of research and development, and had to learn both video production and computer programming, since Artifacts was the first system of its kind to be developed for an art museum.

The tools have vastly evolved over time but the idea of using technology to give visitors a more engaging experience at the DMA has stayed the same.

Hillary Bober is the Archivist at the Dallas Museum of Art.

But Wait There’s More!

DMA Arts & Letters Live, the Museum’s acclaimed literary and performing arts series, announced a “but wait there’s more!” extension of its 25th anniversary season this week with six author events for the fall.

I’m particularly excited that each of these carefully selected programs dovetails with the DMA’s collection, and we’re offering pre-event tours so that people can explore connections between the featured books and art currently on view.

Here’s the scoop and a few tidbits on why we selected them.

September 11: Robert Hoge

Robert Hoge UGLY

Australian author Robert Hoge wowed us with his TEDx talk, sharing his own poignant and personal story of being born with a tumor on his face and disfigured legs. His memoir for adults and now middle grade students, Ugly addresses life, love, beauty, imperfection, and pain, so his story will resonate with a wide variety of ages. Hoge says, “We all have scars only we can own.” Our pre-event tour will focus on Frida Kahlo’s Self Portrait Very Ugly and stir discussion about self-perception and ideas of beauty.

September 15: Ross King

Claude Monet, Water Lilies, 1908, oil on canvas, Dallas Museum of Art, gift of the Meadows Foundation, Incorporated, 1981.128

Claude Monet, Water Lilies, 1908, oil on canvas, Dallas Museum of Art, gift of the Meadows Foundation, Incorporated, 1981.128

Ross King returns to the DMA by popular demand with his new book, Mad Enchantment, about the beloved artist Claude Monet and the creation of his famous water lily paintings. He argues that there is more than meets the eye with these serene images of beauty, examining the complexity behind them and the frustrations and challenges that Monet overcame to create them. A docent will discuss the DMA’s iconic painting of water lilies and other Impressionist highlights before the event.

September 28: Candice Millard

Candice Millard Hero of the Empire

Candice Millard’s brilliant new biography, Hero of the Empire, pinpoints the little-known story of young Winston Churchill’s Indiana Jones–like adventures, including a bold escape from prison camp during the Boer War. Millard offers keen insights on how the lessons Churchill learned in the midst of these challenges related to his achievements and legacy as prime minister later in his life. Before the event, enjoy a gallery talk about Winston Churchill’s friendship with Wendy and Emery Reves and see his paintings and belongings on view in the Reves Collection.

October 26: Yaa Gyasi and Margo Jefferson

Yaa Gyasi_credit Michael Lionstar

Margo Jefferson (c) Michael Lionstar

One of the most buzzworthy books this summer, garnering more than 250 stellar reviews on Amazon, Yaa Gyasi’s epic debut novel, Homegoing, begins with two half-sisters in 18th-century Ghana—one married off to a wealthy Englishman, the other sold into slavery—and traces the lives of their descendants to 20th-century America. (FYI: Knopf acquired the novel for more than $1 million from the then 25-year-old author!). Pulitzer Prize–winning critic Margo Jefferson adored Gyasi’s novel and will discuss it with her as well as her own National Book Critics Circle Award–winning memoir, Negroland. Before the event, join curator Dr. Roslyn Walker in the galleries to explore works of art from Ghana.

November 15: Hannah Rothschild

Hannah Rothschild PB Cover

British author Hannah Rothschild knows the art world—she comes from a prominent art-collecting family and is the first woman chair of the National Gallery in London. Rothschild is coming to the DMA in her only US appearance for the paperback release of her debut novel, The Improbability of Love. The New York Times hailed it as “a frolicsome art-world caper,” and Elizabeth Gilbert called it “an inspired feast of clever delights.” In it, Annie McDee stumbles upon a grimy painting in a secondhand shop that turns out to be a lost masterpiece by one of the most important French artists of the 18th century. While searching for the painting’s identity, Annie will unwittingly uncover some of the darkest secrets of European history as well as the possibility of falling in love again. Before the event, don’t miss the chance to hear Dr. Nicole Myers, The Lillian and James H. Clark Curator of European Painting and Sculpture, highlight 18thcentury French paintings in the DMA’s collection.

November 17: Patricia Cornwell

Patricia CORNWELL__Author Photo__cred Patrick Ecclesine

We’ve had several requests to bring in the #1 New York Times bestselling author Patricia Cornwell on audience surveys, so we are excited to cap off our 25th anniversary season with twenty-five years of Cornwell’s popular high-stakes series starring medical examiner Dr. Kay Scarpetta. Cornwell will share insights about her new novel, Chaos, involving a cyberbully; her creative process in researching and writing her books; and her theory that artist Walter Sickert was Jack the Ripper. Fans can purchase VIP experience tickets that include a wine and cheese reception with the author, a hardcover copy of Chaos, reserved premium seating, and a book signing fast-track pass.

You can make DMA Arts & Letters Live your own book club—invite your friends to join you for these unique and inspiring evenings combining books and art!

Carolyn Bess is the Director of Arts & Letters Live at the DMA.

Freeze Frame

It’s hard to believe, but we’re in the final week of the celebrated exhibition Irving Penn: Beyond Beauty. Prior to the show’s opening in April of this year, Allison V. Smith, photographer and granddaughter of Stanley Marcus, shared with the DMA Member magazine, Artifacts, her first encounter with the work of Irving Penn and the impact of his legacy.  Read about her experience below, and discover the work of Irving Penn for the first time or for the hundredth time through Sunday with buy one get on free exhibition tickets offered every day.

One of the Real Greats
By Allison V. Smith
Original publish date: Artifacts Spring–Summer 2016

Irving Penn’s name is synonymous with beauty in fashion photography. So it’s no surprise that in 1990 my grandfather Stanley Marcus gave me, a young, passionate photographer, a signed copy of Issey Miyake’s catalogue photographed by Irving Penn. An enclosed handwritten Post-it note read:
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“Dear Allie— Penn, in my opinion, is the greatest of the fashion photographers and perhaps one of the real greats of the 20th century. Are you friends with him?”

I wasn’t, but I quickly took the time to educate myself.

Penn’s prolific photographic career spanned seventy years, and in this time he managed to merge the lines between fashion and fine art. His first cover for Vogue magazine was published in 1943, and he would shoot at least 150 more.

Irving Penn, Salvador Dali, New York, 1947, gelatin silver print, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of the artist. Copyright © The Irving Penn Foundation

Irving Penn, Salvador Dali, New York, 1947, gelatin silver print, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of the artist, © The Irving Penn Foundation

Penn’s assignments ranged from shooting striking models in designer dresses on location in Paris, to contemporary still lifes of familiar objects, to the simple “corner portraits” of artists that included Salvador Dalí and Truman Capote. These portraits were made sometime in 1948 in a constructed corner in his studio. The sitter embraced the corner, demonstrating his or her own personality and making the static background Penn chose into a private stage. Dalí fills the frame in a confident pose, with both arms placed firmly on his knees. Capote kneels on a chair, wearing an oversized tweed jacket and looking directly at the photographer. It’s hard to tell whether he’s feeling vulnerable or safe.

Irving Penn, Truman Capote, New York, 1979, printed 1983, silver print, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of The Irving Penn Foundation. Copyright © The Irving Penn Foundation

Irving Penn, Truman Capote, New York, 1979, printed 1983, silver print, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of The Irving Penn Foundation, © The Irving Penn Foundation

Penn wrote in Passage: A Work Record about this process: “This confinement, surprisingly, seemed to comfort people, soothing them. The walls were a surface to lean on or push against. For me the picture possibilities were interesting; limiting the subjects’ movement seemed to relieve me of part of the problem of holding on to them.”

Working for Vogue, Penn had the dream job of traveling the world photographing portraits of everyday people—artisans and blue-collar workers in Paris and London, a gypsy community in Spain, and the tribes of New Guinea. Penn approached all of his portraits with the same respect and elegance as he did in posing a model in Paris or an Issey Miyake design.

Irving Penn, Issey Miyake Fashion: White and Black, New York, 1990, printed 1992, gelatin silver print, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of The Irving Penn Foundation. Copyright © The Irving Penn Foundation

Irving Penn, Issey Miyake Fashion: White and Black, New York, 1990, printed 1992, gelatin silver print, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of The Irving Penn Foundation, © The Irving Penn Foundation

Penn’s photographs are subtle and sophisticated, often finding his subjects against a blank backdrop. His meticulous flowers are a study of visual rhythm. His nudes, whom he shot on countless rolls of film on his Rolleiflex camera between 1949 and 1950, went largely unseen until 1980. He closely examined the shapes of models of all sizes. The results were about form and less about nakedness.

A prolific photographer and a technical master, he made personal work throughout his life, including his early photographs of shop window displays, and later cigarette butts, smashed cups, and chewing gum. These simple photos of litter experimented with different photographic processes, such as platinum and palladium, giving them a rich quality—and also leaving an indelible mark on me.

Allison V. Smith is an editorial and fine art photographer based in Dallas. In 2008, the DMA presented “Reflection of a Man: The Photography of Stanley Marcus,” a retrospective of photographs taken by the department store magnate and produced by Smith and her mother, Jerrie Smith.

 

Going for the Green

Have you ever wondered why Olympians are crowned with a wreath of leaves when receiving a medal? Well, you see, it was not always about going for the gold: in ancient times, victors were adorned with a crown of wild olive leaves (kotinos). Legend has it that Hercules (also known in Greek as Heracles or Herakles) was the creator of the Olympic Games, which at its inception solely consisted of a single tournament of foot racing. He dedicated the contest to the gods, and ornamented the winners with a wreath from an olive tree that grew behind the temple of Zeus in Olympia. Ever since, the wreath has been a symbol of the Olympic Games. After all, who needs a piece of precious metal when the pride of Olympus—and Greece’s divine hero—has given you some sacred flora to show off?

Best of luck to all the athletes competing in Rio. May you be faster, higher, and stronger!

Julie Henley is the Communications and Marketing Coordinator at the DMA.

State Pride

Everyone can admit there is just a certain draw to Texas. We aren’t sure if it’s the Art, Bar-B-Que, or the Cowboys, but we love Texas and we’ve picked our favorite back to school gifts for you to show off your state pride. All are available online and on-site at the DMA Store.

Texas

Pegasus Snow Globe – Decorate your desk with this red Pegasus that has come to represent the city since it first flew over the Magnolia Oil Company building in 1934.

Gold Texas Necklace – This custom gold necklace is a delicate way to show your state pride.

This Is Texas by Miroslav Sasek – The stylish, charming illustrations, coupled with Sasek’s witty, playful narrative, make this book a perfect souvenir that will delight both children and adults.

Dallas Home Glass Set – Cheers to loving Dallas! This glass set makes a great addition to any home.

 


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