The museums in the Dallas Arts District came together for a summer block party that really brought the fun! I’m very familiar with the Late Night at the Dallas Museum of Art (DMA). I try to attend every 3rd Friday of the month. And, I’ve attended two Crow Collection of Asian Art After Dark events. But, last night was the first time I attended a ‘Til Midnight at the Nasher Sculpture Center.
I was most impressed with the coordination amongst the museums. There were so many activities both inside and outside that I was unable to do them all. And darn it, I wanted to do it all!
The evening began with me missing the Grace Hula and Tahitian Dance by this much. I had only a second, to regret taking an after-work nap, before the lion dances, martial arts and weapons demonstrations with Lee’s White Leopard Kung Fu School began on Flora Street. Amazingly entrancing for adults and children alike!
It was so hard to tear myself away from that lively performance. But, I really wanted to join the Progressive Museums Tour. We began at the Nasher with a brief but very interesting gallery talk on their retrospective of drawings by contemporary British artist Rachel Whiteread. We were personally escorted across Flora Street to the Crow Collection to a hear highlights about Modern Twist: Bamboo Works from the Clark Center and the Art of Motoko Maio exhibition. My favorite of these contemporary Japanese baskets is probably the least functional, and reminds me of 80s couture. You’ll have to visit the Crow to see it for yourself! To my surprise, we also took a trip up to the LinkAsia gallery space for a viewing of Il Lee’s New Vision: Ballpoint Drawings.
The last stop of the tour was at the DMA. However, I cannot tell you what was shown because just as we crossed the threshold of the Flora Street entrance, I remembered I wanted to catch Fresh Ink with Jake Silverstein. I’d been looking forward to hearing the Texas Monthly editor discuss his first book, Nothing Happened and Then It Did: A Chronicle in Fact and Fiction. Alas, there was not an empty seat to be found in the DMA’s C3 theatre. Note to self: Next time get a ticket at 6 p.m.!
Don’t cry for me … as I consulted my schedule for an alternative activity, I received a tweet with the first clue of the Museum Art Challenge. As instructed via multiple pre-event tweets, I put my smartphone to good use all through the evening, tweeting and monitoring #SummArt #tilMidnight #ArtTour and #ArtHunt! Upon accepting the challenge, I began speed walking through the DMA to solve the first clue. It was a photo clue. Think “water”…
After solving the first clue, I joined my dear editor outside the front entrance of the DMA for the Dick Dale and Jimmy Dale concert. Though, it wasn’t long before I was back on the art hunt; rushing to the Nasher. Upon entering the garden, I was immediately distracted by the cool tent for members, and then more so by the huge beanbag chairs strategically placed where a weary art detective could take a load off and enjoy a cross stream of air from huge fans provided by Reliant Energy. Accordingly, I took my time pondering the second clue. A few of the fans were dispatched a cooling fine mist. Think “water”…
Before leaving the ‘Til Midnight at the Nasher Sculpture Center, I had to watch a few scenes from the The Wizard of Oz, which was projected at the foot of the Terrace Garden. Before the Lion regained his courage, I was off to solve the last clue of the art hunt.
Across the street, the Crow Collection After Dark was in the full swing of TIKIoke with DJ Mark Ridlen. This multimedia karaoke experience came with complimentary sake & Asian beer, for those patrons of drinking age. The crowd exploded in cheers when Director of Education, Tracy Bays-Boothe, began singing Bowie’s China Girl. I was having such a great time singing along that I almost missed the last clue of the art hunt. In fact, a fellow karaoke patron alerted me to the tweet. I felt like Rocky as I descended the plaza stairs, arms waving in the air as I bellowed, “It’s Buddha! It’s Buddha!”
While the thrill of winning was awesome in itself, there was a grand prize. I won memberships to all three museums! Of course, I’m already a member of each fine institution. I actually took on the Museum Art Challenge for a relative who has suffered a huge loss and to whom I want to give the gift of art as a conduit for healing.
So elated that I’d successfully completed the art hunt, I returned to the Crow’s Gallery III to celebrate karaoke style. But in doing so, I missed one particular event I had been eagerly anticipating all evening. That was the EnLIGHTenment Tour of the Crow’s Jade by flashlight! Perhaps they’ll repeat this event again. I sincerely hope so.
Thank you, Dallas Arts District, for a wonderful evening of art, music and fun. There were some many wonderful activities from which to choose. I couldn’t do them all, but I certainly tried!
Mark your calendars for the next evening of Summer Art fun on July 16th!