Thursday, April 29, 2004

Last night I returned from a four day business trip in Dallas. I flew out early Sunday morning so that I could arrive in time to visit the Dallas Museum of Art. I have a fancy membership to the San Diego Museum of Art that allows me to visit seventeen other art museums in the Western U.S for free. The irony is that it would actually be cheaper to just pay the normal admission fee to each museum then what the fancy membership costs. Anyway, to alleviate the magnitude of my poor accounting practices, I feel a deep need to visit the museums when I can.

The Dallas Museum of Art had some great stuff and an interesting layout. It had five floors arranged in a cascading stair-step pattern where one flowed down onto the next. I say this with reluctance -- since I'm an artist I feel inclined to embrace all art forms -- but I hate square paintings. I loathe them. Every time I see a Mark Rothko painting with a description hanging nearby about its deep symbolism and metaphor I have a visceral reaction that makes me want to shake museum directors worldwide and tell them how they all have had the wool pulled over their eyes. The one exception to the square paintings comes from the artist Piet Mondrian. I enjoy his squares. However I seem to enjoy them more upon seeing his wonderful landscape and figurative work that preceeded the squares. The DMA had a nice collection of both.

Across the street I visited the Nasher Sculpture Center. The entrance fee was $10, which for an art museum is on the very high side, but upon entering I found that it was definitely worth it. The featured exhibit was Picasso: The Cubist Portraits of Fernande Olivier. A great collection. I'm not very good at internalizing sculpture, but the museum had so many engaging pieces laid out wonderfully in internal galleries and an outside garden that it made the attraction easy and instantenous. They also had some Giacometti sculptures which are always whimsical and intriguing. He's one of my faves.

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