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14 Things You Must Do This January in Dallas

Gallery exhibitions, live streams, and a few distanced in-person events kick off 2021.
By D Magazine |
Natasha Bowdoin (b.1981), Seedling, 2019
Courtesy of Natasha Bowdoin and Talley Dunn Gallery

Curbed Vanity: A Contemporary Foil by Chris Schanck

Jan. 17–Aug. 29

Dallas Museum of Art

Schanck, the Dallas-raised, Detroit-based artist and designer, is known for his Alufoil series, pieces of furniture composed of found objects that have been covered in aluminum foil and sealed with resin—a reference to the aluminum factory where he worked alongside his father while growing up here. For Curbed Vanity, Schanck’s first museum commission and solo museum presentation, he’s created a modern counterpart to the late 19th-century Martelé dressing table in the DMA’s collection. The designer’s abstract, aluminum vanity, made with discarded objects from his Detroit neighborhood, will be displayed alongside the silver antique from 1899 (inset), opening a dialogue about craftsmanship and materials. The focus installation is included in the DMA’s free general admission.

Civil Rights Exhibition[img-credit id=”836293″]The Fight for Civil Rights in the South

Through Jan. 10

Dallas Holocaust and Human Rights Museum

Combining two significant and powerful collections of photography—Selma to Montgomery by James “Spider” Martin, and Courage Under Fire by Joseph Postiglione—this special exhibition captures the bravery, violence, and horrors of Black Americans’ struggle for civil rights and social equality in the 1960s.

Dallas Opera Streaming


The opera leapt into action when performing arts venues were closed in March, launching an online streaming platform, TDO Network, that has now garnered more than 50 million views from an audience spanning 50 countries. From previously recorded concerts to weekly opera news briefs, the channel offers a rich assortment of programming.

In the Night Garden


Amon Carter Museum of American Art 

With “In the Night Garden,” Houston-based artist and Rice University professor Natasha Bowdoin creates a whimsical nature scene with huge insects, flowers, and botanicals inspired by 19th-century paintings, prints, and archival materials from the Carter’s collection.

Alonso Berruguete: First Sculptor of Renaissance Spain

Through Jan. 10

Meadows Museum

There are only a few days this month to catch the end of the first major U.S. exhibition dedicated to Spanish renaissance artist Alonso Berruguete at SMU’s Meadows Museum. The show includes two dozen sculptures, as well as three paintings from his Italian period and six drawings.

What the Constitution Means to Me

Jan. 26–31

Winspear Opera House

This 2019 Tony nominee (for Best Play) and Pulitzer Prize finalist is a funny and important look at the founding document and its biases, as explored through the personal story of playwright Heidi Schreck.

[img-credit id=”836291″]Art Reframes History

Through Apr. 4

Sixth Floor Museum

Drawing from the museum’s permanent collection, this exhibition considers artists’ interpretations of historical events, particularly the life and legacy of John F. Kennedy (naturally). Ten pieces that pull from various disciplines (photography, oil painting, music) present the perspectives of artists including Andy Warhol, Piet Wessing, and Jens Lorenzen.

Jo Koy

Jan. 16 & 17

Winspear Opera House

If you liked his 2019 Netflix special, Comin’ in Hot, you’ll love the 48-year-old comedian’s now-resumed Just Kidding World Tour. Koy, a regular on Chelsea Lately, will keep you laughing with his ridiculous impressions and ’90s R&B singalongs.

Frontiers of Flight Museum


This beloved museum near Love Field is open with new safety precautions, including a limit of 50 percent capacity, touch-free exhibitions, and increased cleaning procedures. While many interactive elements have been closed, you’ll still find an intriguing array of exhibitions exploring the history of flight.

John Moreland

Jan. 21, 8 pm

The Kessler

In February, Longview-born, Tulsa-based singer-songwriter John Moreland released LP5—his first album in three years and perhaps his best yet—after taking a break from music. You’ll finally have a chance to hear the new material live as Moreland visits Dallas.

John Doe Livestream

Jan. 20, 8 pm

Granada Theater

The genre-spanning musician and co-founder of the legendary punk band X will perform a solo show live from The Cactus Cafe on the UT Austin campus. This show, the last in a series of livestream performances, will be mostly based on requests via Doe’s Instagram account.

Hair Story: Myths, Magic, and Methods of Black Hair

Through Feb. 13

African American Museum of Dallas

Dallas-based artist LaShonda Cooks curated this exhibition to explore the cultural, economic, political, and spiritual significance of Black hair through the work of local artists including Ciara Elle Bryant, Art-Fro Kreationz, Danielle Demetria, Feniix Raii, and others. Cooks’ own works, miniature portraits painted on palm leaves, will be gifted to their muses at the show’s conclusion.

Yoshitomo Nara

Opens Jan. 30 

Dallas Contemporary

The Design District art space reopens for the first time since March with a career survey of acclaimed Japanese artist Yoshitomo Nara. Culled from paintings, drawings, sculptures, and photographs made from 2006 to present, the exhibition will consider Nara’s practice through an autobiographical lens, as well as in the context of larger cultural issues that have inspired his work.

Robert Spano and the Fort Worth Symphony

Jan. 7–9

Bass Performance Hall

Principal guest conductor Robert Spano leads an evening of stunning string music beginning with Jennifer Higdon’s Celestial Blue from the five-movement work “Dance Card,” a combination of ensemble and solo playing. Then featured violinist Stefan Jackiw will give a performance of Prokofiev’s Violin Concerto No. 2. The evening draws to a close with Dvorák’s Serenade in E Major.

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