I had a busy, almost bitterly disappointing, but ultimately fun second day in Dallas. I got to the Nasher Sculpture Center just before they opened, excited to see work by many renowned sculptors. Turned out that the museum was in the process of installing a new exhibit (Tony Cragg, which I would have loved to have seen!), so almost everything was closed. The only thing open was the sculpture garden, which was good, because one of the two pieces I went to Texas specifically to see was in the garden.
This piece was James Turrell’s Tending (Blue). I started walking through the garden and soon realized that the sign at the back of the garden reading, “exhibit temporarily closed” referred to this very piece. I wanted to puke. I back into the building and begged to see it anyway, explaining that I was there on scholarship to see that specific work. After some deliberation, I was allowed to see it. Although the special lighting inside wasn’t turned on, it was still a good experience – I sat in the shade, looked up at the blue blue sky, and let the square of sunshine streaming in pass across my body. It made time a very physical presence. I felt like I’d morphed into a part of an ancient sundial. I’d like to go back when it’s redone (someone started building a skyscraper across the street, and you can see it through the aperture in the ceiling). Sounds like it’ll be a while before it’s reopened, however. Mr. Turrell is a busy man!
The Nasher also had a piece by Richard Serra, My Curves Are Not Mad, which was very compelling (even more than the Turrell piece, I have to admit). I liked how it dampened all sound, softening the constant jack-hammering and traffic from the nearby construction and street. Like Tending (Blue), it cut off my field of vision to a very concise, specific area as I walked through it. It felt like an oasis in the middle of a maelstrom.
After the Nasher, I went across the street to the Dallas Museum of Art. It was impressive! One of my favorite pieces was a painting by Andrew Wyeth called That Gentleman. I’ll put a cropped picture of it here. You can see all of the photos I shot on this trip on my facebook page.
After finishing up here, I got in my car and drove to Houston. I only got pulled over once….