This month we spotlight Caroline and Robert Belanger, DMA members since 2004.
Tell us a little bit about yourselves and why you joined the DMA? The strength of the Dallas arts community is what independently brought both of us here. Caroline moved from Austin to help run Pan American Art Projects, a Latin-American art gallery. Rob relocated from Atlanta to work with Dr. Anne Bromberg in the curatorial department at the Dallas Museum of Art. We are now running our own art-consulting business, Belanger Art Methods, and we are proud to serve the arts community and to support the Museum as active members of the Junior Associates Circle.
What’s your favorite activity at the DMA and why? For us, it would have to be Curator’s Choice, the first Junior Associates Circle event of the year. It is always an exceptional opportunity to meet new members and to hear a curator speak about one of their favorite works of art in the Museum’s collections – right in the galleries. Not to mention that is the very event where we first met!
What is or was your favorite exhibition at the DMA and why? Caroline: In 2005, Dr. Dorothy Kosinski curated the exhibition Dialogues: Duchamp, Cornell, Johns, Rauschenberg, which revealed both the overt and covert dialogue and shared visual vocabulary evident in the work of these four modern and contemporary artists. Personally, as an art historian, I enjoyed how this exhibition investigated the exchange of philosophies and strategies throughout modernism from Dada and surrealism to pop art, and even found-object assemblage. Also, it was nice that the majority of the works in the show are in the DMA’s collections.
Rob: Charles Sheeler’s “Power” Series from 2006, curated by Dr. William Keyse Rudolph, is a great example of how small, intimate exhibitions can be among the most memorable. The exhibition focused on a series of six iconic paintings by Charles Sheeler, a self-proclaimed “precisionist” painter and founder of American modernism. The key to this exhibition was that it not only reunited all of the paintings for the first time in many years but also skillfully integrated numerous original photographic studies and archival materials into the gallery layout, offering an exceptional snapshot of the creative process from start to finish.
What is your typical day like? As art consultants, no day is really the same, but the one constant is that we are always problem-solving. For example, one day we will be curating, inventing mounts, and physically installing works of art on-site for a private collector. The next, we are in the office researching, designing, and editing an exhibition publication for a museum. The day after, we may be visiting a gallery to help a client buy or sell. Since we have a broad range of expertise, we get the chance to work on a lot of great projects with some really fascinating people.