Weekend Art Picks: Is There Too Much Performance Art in DFW?

In this week's art column we're talking about a new gallery in West Dallas, HOMECOMING Committee's homecoming, and an evening of performance art.

News Note: Erin Cluley Gallery to open in Trinity Groves: The former exhibitions manager of the Dallas Contemporary is set to open a new commercial gallery this fall in Trinity Groves, the West Dallas restaurant and pop-up enclave primed for massive redevelopment. Curley announced earlier this week that her new space, Erin Cluley Gallery, would feature both Dallas-based artists and artists from around the United States. The first show will feature Baltimore-based painter René Treviño, whose work engages with questions racial and gender identity and incorporates images and iconography from Mexican culture — a nod, I’m sure, to West Dallas’ history and cultural legacy. As for familiar local names for whom Cluley has upcoming shows planned: Kevin Todora and Francisco Moreno will have exhibitions in the coming year. It has been a while since we’ve seen a new commercial gallery come on line in Dallas with this kind of programmatic profile, and it will be interesting to see it take the temperature of the state of the regional art market. Here’s the full release.


Inside)(Outside – Live Performance Showcase at Oil and Cotton — August 16, 6 p.m. – 12 a.m. 837 W. 7th St. Dallas, TX 75208.

I’ll be honest, I haven’t dedicated much time or energy to following the growing interest and fervency around performance art in North Texas. Over the past few years, the number of artists pursuing such work has grown, and the frequency of performances has increased. For my own part, I find much performance art tedious, frustratingly effusive and emotional, and overly obscure. It too often feels like a kind of artistic therapy, which is enacting all sorts of wonders on the spiritual well-being of the artist, while leaving the audience sipping Modello and left with little but an attempt to feel good about witnessing someone else’s expressive moment of public psychic rehabilitation. I know I’m being cynical. I know there’s there’s good performance art. But let’s just get it out there: I wholeheartedly support the Marina Abramovic Retirement Fund of America.

That said, when I find myself so utterly on the outside of something that so many people I respect seem to be really into, then it is time to dive in and take stock of the situation again. And this is the weekend to do it, with four separate performances scattered around Oak Cliff. Sure, we’re promised things like an online exhibition featuring ephemera “from artists exploring the inbetween in performance” (gag!), works that will “challenge representations of performance art to the everyday” (grammar people, learn it!), and “comparative to the peformative of gender roles” (WTF does that even mean?!). But I’ll try. I’ll try.


Private Practice at Artspace 111 August 16, 6-9 p.m. 111 Hampton St. Fort Worth, TX 76102.

God, it’s been a long summer. So long, in fact, that when I saw that HOMECOMING! Committee had a show this weekend in Fort Worth’s Artspace 111, I thought of that scene in the new planet of the apes movie where the intelligent monkeys are sitting around wondering if there are any humans left on earth. “It’s been ten winters since we’ve last seen any,” one of the apes says. It hasn’t been ten winters since HOMECOMING did anything, but in the meantime they have been wandering around in the forest and have lost at least one member to Houston, which has attracted away a few Dallas-based talents in recent months (why people would move to Houston I will never understand – and I like visiting Houston). But the zestiest art collective in Nord Tex is back, and even if art collectives feel SO 2013, the thought of seeing this crew’s antics again feels like, well, a homecoming.


Broken Perspective by Favio Moreno at {neighborhood} in conjuction with The Public Trust — August 16, 6-10 p.m. 411 N. Bishop Ave. Dallas, TX 75248.

You know who didn’t take the summer off? Brian Gibb. The Public Trust has been active through the hot months, almost single-handedly staving off the reputation that Dallas’ art scene is an eight month a year affair. This weekend The Public Trust opens another exhibition at the Oak Cliff spot called Neighborhood, this time featuring the works of Favio Moreno. Moreno’s Bodega Negra features sharp graphic art that blends iconographic detritus with a keen abstract sensibility and a healthy sense of humor.


Here are all of the openings:


DIY Panel hosted by Lee Escobedo at CentralTrak — August 14, 7 p.m. 800 Exposition Ave. Dallas, TX 75226.


Red Hot Art Exhibition at Valley View Center — August 16, 6-10 p.m. 13331 Preston Rd. Dallas, TX 75240.

Inside)(Outside – Live Performance Showcase at Oil and Cotton — August 16, 6 p.m. – 12 a.m. 837 W. 7th St. Dallas, TX 75208.

Midtown ARTwalk at Gallery at MIDTOWN — August 16, 6-10 p.m. 13331 Preston Rd. Dallas, TX 75240.

Private Practice at Artspace 111 — August 16, 6-9 p.m. 111 Hampton St. Fort Worth, TX 76102.

Broken Perspective by Favio Moreno at {neighborhood} in conjuction with The Public Trust — August 16, 6-10 p.m. 411 N. Bishop Ave. Dallas, TX 75248.


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