Monday, October 4, 2010
ARTsPARK at NorthPark inspires the artist in all of us
ARTsPARK was an eye opening experience, especially to rid Dallas of the phrase, “there’s nothing going on out there.”
DALLAS There was artistic treasure buried deep in the heart of Big D, and this weekend those creative gems found their way to NorthPark Center.
ARTsPARK welcomed more than 100 theatrical, musical, and visual arts organizations to the shimmering stone walkways of NorthPark to give shoppers a fulfilling idea of all of the wonderful art-filled events the city has to offer.
The ever present City of Dallas Office of Cultural Affairs of course made a grand appearance to highlight the exciting events coming up this season at its cultural centers, including the South Dallas Cultural Center, the Latino Cultural Center, and last but not least the Bath House Cultural Center. Each facility offers a rich exploration into the various cultures of our community and hosts every genre of the arts including, jazz, stage performance, and visual arts.
The most intriguing organization was MADI (Museum of Geometric and MADI Art). Not only is the edifice which holds the mesmerizing configurations of art visually appealing, but its history and influence is a bold lesson within itself. MADI’s roots can be traced to the 1940s MADI movement initiated by Carmelo Arden Quin, however, the existence of the Dallas MADI museum dates back to 2003. It features an international list of artists who still follow the influences of Quin today. The conceptual art museum reaches out to the community via student workshops, encouraging young to understand the relationships of color, space, design, and shapes.
Another colorful little secret stumbled upon at ARTsPARK was the African-American Repertory Theater. Founded in 2007 by Irma P. Hall, Regina Washington, and Vince McGill, the theater has found a quiet little home at the Corner Theater in DeSoto. Over the past three years, the small triumvirate of talent has produced memorable performances such as Having our Say and A Raisin in the Sun. Besides entertaining the community in which it resides, ART also host workshops for both children and adult actors looking to hone their skill as stage actors.
On a more natural note, the all-time favorite family and tourist draw, the Dallas Arboretum made a surprising visit to the art walk. This floral fantasy land offers year-round scenery for nature lovers; this fall it's a pumpkin path of 40,000 orange orbs lighting the way. Not just for weddings and fancy balls, the arboretums doors are open to school groups by day and during the spring and summer, and families are welcome to come out and enjoy musical moments from locally-known bands that brighten up the night with old familiar tunes. Many of the passers-by were surprised to see the arboretum among the many artistic offerings at ARTsPARK on Saturday; however, just one look at the exquisite arrangements throughout the laden lane landscape gives one an understanding that it takes pure artistry to create such a fascinating façade of flowering fields.
Keeping with nature, children were naturally drawn to the colorful display of butterflies which are always on exhibit at the Texas Discovery Gardens’ Rosine Smith Sammons Butterfly House. Although the garden is open year round, be advised they usually take a break after the State Fair. Their education and outreach, which serves children year-round as well, includes hands on experiences to make young minds soar. Texas Discovery Gardens are also looking for volunteers.
Rounding out the perfect stroll through the art-filled aisles was the program Slant 45. This service oriented organization aids children in understanding the importance and impact on giving back to the community through volunteerism. Schools, after-school programs, and even church organizations can participate. Sponsored in part by the North Texas Super Bowl XLV host Committee and the creative learning organization Big Thought, it encourages student participants to provide acts of kindness to make their community a better place to live.
ARTsPARK was an eye opening experience, especially to rid Dallas of the phrase, “there’s nothing going on out there.” Take a moment and look around at all of the exciting artistic organizations that keep art in Dallas alive and well. Perhaps the most intriguing factor of most of the organizations on display was the opportunity not just to enjoy the music, dance, theater, and visual arts so prevalent here in the DFW area, but also that all are welcome to volunteer so that others can indulge in the hidden treasures of the Dallas artist communities.
Pegasus News Content partner - The Assignment Desk, DFW
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