The were hordes of visitors celebrating at Thursday’s opening night party for the Texas Contemporary Art Fair, but it was during the quieter afternoon on Friday when a fairgoer, reportedly backing up to snap a photo, sent a sculptural installation crashing to the convention center floor. The piece was Houston artist Debra Barrera’s Sports Car on Earth, In Space, the front and back ends of a 1986 Pontiac Firebird mounted on two walls.
Within hours, the car installation was replaced with some memorial flowers and a revised label naming the new work Everything Goes Away All the Time, But Right Now We’re Right Here. Barrera is Moody Gallery’s nomination for this year’s Texas Contemporary Award, the best-in-show prize that comes with a $10,000 cash award. There are a number of excellent nominees this year, but perhaps the jury (which includes CAMH Director Bill Arning and Rita Gonzalez, Associate Curator of Contemporary Art at LACMA) should consider some new award categories, such as “Most Adaptable Artist.”