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Austin to Open its First Art Storage Warehouse

 

Marcel Broodthaers, Museum of Modern Art, Department of Eagles, 1968

Marcel Broodthaers, Museum of Modern Art, Department of Eagles, 1968

You know your city is making art market strides when a group of guys opens a high-end, climate controlled warehouse for all the overflow art to go. As the Blanton’s collection grows and as area institutions like UT and the Contemporary commission more large-scale outdoor works, longtime art handlers Robert Boland, Chris Campbell and Patrick Sheehy will open Vault Fine Art Service to fill that art storage void that has lately become more apparent, reports the Austin American-Statesman (article behind paywall). Even as small commercial galleries shutter in Austin, it seems the larger art institutions and collectors are building substantial art holdings.“Quietly, in recent years corporations have developed art collections, and the circle of private collectors has widened,” says the newspaper. The Vault team, with good art market savvy, will open a place for all that extra stuff to sit.

George W. Bush Painting Show (and its Doppelganger) Opens TOMORROW!

Portraits of (clockwise from bottom left) former  President Nicolas Sarkozy of France, Prime Minister Stephen Harper of Canada, the crown prince of Abu Dhabi, Mohammed bin Zayed, and the former president of South Korea, Lee Myung-bak. All were painted by former President George W. Bush. Credit Brandon Thibodeaux for The New York Times

Portraits of (clockwise from bottom left) former President Nicolas Sarkozy of France, Prime Minister Stephen Harper of Canada, the crown prince of Abu Dhabi, Mohammed bin Zayed, and the former president of South Korea, Lee Myung-bak. All were painted by former President George W. Bush. Credit Brandon Thibodeaux for The New York Times

George W. Bush’s much-anticipated painting show opens tomorrow at the 43rd President’s library and museum on the SMU campus in Dallas! Foregoing the innocuous subject matter of his earliest paintings—dogs, bath time, cats—on view at the library will be a series of portraits of some of the world leaders that Bush encountered and engaged with while in office–Putin, Tony Blair, Nicolas Sarkozy, and the rest of the World Leader Crew.

In honor of the absolutely earnest hobby of GW, CentralTrak Artists Residency will be hosting a absolutely satirical show of reproductions of his work as organized by artist/curators Morehshin Allahyari  and Julie McKendrick in collaboration with “Children of Artemis – Sketch Cult” – a regularly assembled group of Dallas-based artists at CentralTrak who make art in a communal setting. For the opening on Saturday night, George W. Bush himself (no, just kidding, a fake GW) will be in attendance, “available to pose for photographs and answer questions about his inspirations, techniques and future artistic projects.”

Also, “attendees are encouraged to add to the celebratory mood with creatively-themed costumes such fluffy bath-time robes or amateur painter’s smocks or even attend the event as a presidential pooch or kitty cat!”

The reception is on Saturday, April 5 , from 7pm to 10pm, at 800 Exposition Avenue, Dallas.

James Surls Sculpture to be Planted in Houston

tree and three flowers

On Tuesday, April 8, the 38-foot high bronze sculpture Tree and Three Flowers by the artist James Surls will be formally dedicated as a work of public art on Kirby Drive in Houston. A product of a strong 50/50 public/private financial partnership, which leveraged TIRZ (that’s tax increment reinvestment zone) and Upper Kirby Management District participation with private donations from arts-dedicated Houstonians, the work will be seen by more than 50,000 cars a day in the high traffic Upper Kirby area. Tuesday’s dedication will included speeches by Syd Bailey, Chairman of the Upper Kirby District Foundation; City of Houston Mayor Annise Parker; artist James Surls and Houston City Council Member Ellen Cohen.

Artist James Surls is a bit of a Texas institution. A native of Terrell, TX, Surls has shown sculptural works in some of the state’s best museums, like the Dallas Museum of Art, SMU’s Meadows Museum and University of Houston’s Blaffer Gallery.  Surls also founded the influential artists’ enclave, the Lawndale Art Center, in 1979, which has become one of Texas’ most valued artist-focused exhibition and residency spaces.

Surls on Kirby Dedication
Tuesday, April 8, 10:15 a.m.
2800 Kirby Drive, Houston, 77098

Genetic Data, Larger than Life

Adam Ball alongside one of his DNA murals.

Adam Ball alongside one of his DNA murals.

The brand-name mural has become a staple of the annual Goss-Michael Foundation’s  MTV RE:DEFINE auction, benefitting MTV’s Staying Alive Foundation and the Dallas Contemporary, in addition to the gala party, the pricey art works, and the hoopla that ensues when artists, charity, and MTV collide like atoms in a nuclear fusion reactor in a desperate effort to create energy by putting together things that may or may not belong together. In 2011, EINE spiffed up under-construction Museum Tower. In 2012, Lee Baker painted on the partitions around the soon-to-be-demolished Praetorian Building. This year, Goss-Michael has tapped British artist (naturally) Adam Ball who will create a mural at the Dallas Contemporary, where MTV RE:DEFINE takes place this year.

Ball’s mural almost sounds like an abstract JR, the French artist who recently enjoyed a show at the Dallas Contemporary, only instead of plastering selfies of his audience to walls, Ball takes swabs of their DNA and then transforms it into an abstract pattern. For the MTV RE:DEFINE auction, the winning bidder will provide a DNA sample that the artist will then have photographed before using it to create a unique large-scale mural at a chosen location. “Artistically speaking there is an established idea of what a portrait should be, whereas in this work I hope to reflect the very blueprint of an individual, working from the inside out,” says Ball. The results are perfectly innocuous patterns that resemble thick forests or algea under a microscope though the lens of Technicolor psychedelia.

Funeral Museum to Showcase Papal Life and Death

The first bullet-proof Pope-mobile, 1982.

The first bullet-proof Pope-mobile, 1982.

As the election of Francis showed us in 2013, it’s hard to top the spectacle of a papal election. But you know what comes close? A papal burial. And now those in Houston can experience what it’s like to put the Catholic Church’s #1 in the grave–or in the case of quite a few popes, in a glass casket in St. Peter’s Basilica—without schlepping it all the way to Rome.

In honor of the upcoming team canonization of Pope John Paul II and Pope John XXIII on April 27, this month the National Museum of Funeral History (yes, this is a real place and no, this is not a belated April Fool’s Day joke) will mount an exhibition of famous papal funerals called Celebrating the Lives and Deaths of the Popes. While the museum says that the exhibit it not all about Pope John Paul II, it is showing most of his stuff, like the actual sash he wore daily with his cassock, photographs from his funeral mass and original burial in the grotto under St. Peter’s Basilica, a replica of his burial container and crypt, as well as an actual “Pope-mobile” used during Pope John Paul II’s 1982 trip to the United Kingdom (developed as the official “Pope-mobile” after JPII was shot in 1981).

If you’re in doubt about whether this is sounds like fun, have no fear: “When the exhibit opened in 2008,” says the museum, “Roberto Casorssi, tailor to the Pope, toured the exhibit and exclaimed, “Perfecto!  Perfecto!  Perfecto! If I didn’t know I was in Houston, I would have thought I was back in Rome attending the funeral of Pope John Paul II once again.”

Good times.

MASS Gallery Seeks Hot Artists

hotbox

After settling into their new Calles Street space last fall after two years of operating as a nomadic gallery, the non-profit, artist/creative-run Austin space MASS Gallery announces plans to hand their gallery over to 2 artists this summer in sophomore year of the cleverly dubbed Hotbox Residency. Each artist can utilize the gallery as studio space for up to 5 weeks, between August 1 and September 6, with a focus on “nurturing projects that would not be realized otherwise” (read: fresh-out-of-grad-school folks in that odd gap between the incubator of the institution and the real world), though it is open to anyone at any stage in their career. The hope, MASS says, is to “ give artists the opportunity to explore new ideas or practices, and allow the participating artists to engage with the Austin community.” Last year’s Hotbox residents included Jill Pangallo, Jory Drew, and Jules Buck Jones.

All MASS Hotbox residents are required to participate in the gallery’s Close Encounters series which engages the public in some creative way. “Open and broad, this prompt can be approached from a multitude of ways: performative, passive, or completely radical in execution or thought, this program is a challenge to the artist, as well as the audience, and designed to provide a new way of encountering and understanding the creative process.”

Residents are given an honoarium of $800, however housing, transportation etc. are up to the applicant. Applications are due May 1.

TWO x TWO Names 2014 Honoree

KARSTEN MORAN | THE NEW YORK TIMES Artist Wade Guyton in his New York studio in front of a work produced by an inkjet printer on linen

KARSTEN MORAN | courtesy THE NEW YORK TIMES
Artist Wade Guyton in his New York studio in front of a work produced by an inkjet printer on linen

TWO x TWO for AIDS and Art, have announced the collectors and art patrons Lisa and John Runyon as the 2014 Event Chairs and artist Wade Guyton as the recipient of the 2014 amfAR Award of Excellence for Artistic Contributions to the Fight Against AIDS. Over the last sixteen years, TWO X TWO raised over $45 million, securing money to both help in the fight against AIDS and help in the purchasing of contemporary art for the Dallas Museum of Art. Win/win.

Of course, TWO x TWO gets a world of heat for being ultra-exclusive, more than a little vampiric (local artists donate scads of work but are never invited to the big night), and in general a boozy, blue-chip, big-huge-wallet fest. Tales of famous people behaving badly always leak through the locked gates of the party; or famous people behaving badly sneak through the gates themselves—who could forget Mark Grotjan’s inebriated writhing in front of the Rachofsky’s Richard Meier-designed digs three years ago?

Wade Guyton, this year’s guest star It-Kid (it-man?), recently had a retrospective at the Whitney which received rave reviews. He is thought to be a sort of new media pioneer, what with his ink-jet printed “paintings.” Maybe so. All that matters for TWO x TWO, though, is that he lather the jet set into a charitable frenzy.

Dallas Museum of Art Appoints Director of Technology and Digital Media

shyam

Shyam Oberoi

Robert Stein, Deputy Director of the Dallas Museum of Art, announced yesterday that Shyam Oberoi has been appointed as the Director of Technology and Digital Media. Oberoi is currently the General Manager of Collections Information Services at the Metropolitan Museum of Art where he steered the re-launch of the museum’s website in 2011, as well as updating the Museum’s online collection–no small feat, considering the Met’s vast holdings.

When he comes down to the DMA, Oberoi will lead the Museum’s digital and technical initiatives as well as the staff in IT, software development, digital media, and the photography and imaging departments. His main task will be to help get the DMA digitally up-to-date and help map its trajectory as a leader in digital media and technology among museums, adding that cred to the Museum’s mounting list of accolades. “Time magazine recently declared that ‘Texas is America’s Future.’ Similarly, I believe that initiatives such as the DMA Friends program; DMX, its international exchange program; and the opening of the new Paintings Conservation Studio point to the future of museums,” said Oberoi. “It is tremendously exciting to have the opportunity to be a part of an institution that is so committed to exploring the digital intersection of art, audience and technology.”

Oberoi will also head up the Museum’s web team and lead the march toward digitizing the Museum’s permanent collection, an aspect of the Museum’s contemporary digital savvy which is currently very much lacking.

Oberoi assumes his post at the DMA on April 14.

Amarillo Museum of Art Appoints New Collections Manager

rob-weingartPerhaps taking to heart David Byrne and Patti Smith’s recent disavowals of the Big Apple for pushing out young talent through high cost of living, Rob Weingart returns to his hometown of Amarillo after a stint in New York to serve as collections manager and head preparator of the Amarillo Museum of Art, Managing Director of AMoA Kim Mahan has announced. Previously, Weingart worked as a property manager at the esteemed auction house Phillips de Pury, as well as holding posts at the Museum of Modern Art, and the Brooklyn Museum, and a number of commercial art galleries.

Weingart received his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the University of North Texas and his Master of Fine Arts degree from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

Artist Theo Wujcik, 1936-2014

Theo Wujcik. Courtesy, Galleri Urbane.

Theo Wujcik. Courtesy, Galleri Urbane.

On Saturday night, after a rapid and intense battle against cancer following a diagnosis of the disease less than six months ago, the artist Theo Wujcik passed away at his home in Florida, his dealer and friend Ree Willaford from Galleri Urbane in Dallas reports. “With his loved ones around him, he moved on from this world,” Willaford says.

Born in Detroit in 1936 but a long-time resident of Florida, Wujcik was known primarily as printmaker. He worked for every major printmaking house in the country, including the presigious Gemini G.E.L. in LA where he was Jasper Johns’ printer in 1968. He was also a co-founder of the Detroit Lithography Workshop where he printed Robert Morris’ “Earth Projects” suite, a commission from the Detroit Institute of the Arts in 1969. He was beloved by many of the artists he printed for, including Ed Ruscha and James Rosenquist who recently flew to Dallas for Wujcik’s solo show opening at Galleri Urbane when Wujcik himself could not because of his illness, “as an homage to Theo,” Galleri Urbane’s Willaford said. As a printmaker, “Theo was the best,” Rosenquist said of him that night.

Like his friend Rosenquist, in his own artistic practice as a painter and printer Wujcik had a keen eye for irony: he knew just how to compose a picture to highlight life’s many hypocrises. He tackled the nitty gritty banalities of American life with imagery of fast food, bad beer, and fading logos of Coca-Cola, and explored how American commercialism spills out into the rest of the world in his Asian Series, a highly-detailed, sometimes exquisite picture of cross-cultural influence. theo2Wujcik’s recent Global Warming Series considers the fallout of consumeristic glut,  depicting a sacchrine world slowly succumbing to erasure by digital pixels.

Wujcik’s solo show of paintings at Galleri Urbane in Dallas was his last. He was eager to come to the opening and have a dialogue with his old friends Ruscha and Rosenquist in the space because the “show/event was the one bright light that lit his eyes up and kept him going for a bit longer,” Willaford says. Last week, Glasstire publisher Rainey Knudson recounted her experience at that opening and gallery talk that Wujcik was not well enough to attend. By all accounts, the night was strange and more than a little uncomfortable, but her piece underscores the odd intersection between art and life’s deeper meanings in a way that Theo Wujcik, an artist who spent a lifetime making images he hoped would show something real and raw about the world, perhaps would have appreciated.

Real Estate Company Sets Art Free

Courtesy of the Houston Chronicle.

Courtesy of the Houston Chronicle.

For 25 years, Brookfield Office Properties, one of Houston’s biggest downtown landlords, has run a program called Art Set Free wherein the company places artworks in the premier office buildings in New York, Los Angeles, Denver, Houston, Toronto, Perth and Sydney, helping expose the office tower set to sculpture, painting, performance and video art for free.

To celebrate a quarter century of making office tower life more inspired, the Houston Chronicle reports that Brookfield has compiled a a slideshow of work that artists submitted to the company through social media with the hashtag #artsetfree.  In a real thinking-out-of-the-box move, the selected works, called the Best of Art Set Free—some 7000 images from 1000 artists from 40 countries—will be displayed on a video monitor in the lobby of One Allen Center in Houston and in all office spaces around the world.

Dallas’ Mayor Mike Rawlings to Host Panel About Arts in Dallas

arts week

As part of the citywide Dallas Arts Week, April 5-13, Mayor Mike Rawlings will be hosting a panel discussion on Tuesday, April 8, called “Re-imagining Art in Dallas” with a crew of influential members from the artist community.

Last year, when the mayor hosted a similar panel discussion, he received a lot of flack for the all-male representation of the Dallas art scene, which included DMA director Max Anderson; Oliver Francis Gallery owner Kevin Jacobs; Kevin Moriarty, artistic director of the Dallas Theater Center; Eric Steele of Aviation Cinemas; and John Kirtland of John Kirtland Records.

Perhaps in an effort to make hyperbolic amends for that gender oversight, this year’s panel will include only women: arts writer Anne Bothwell; artist and publisher Sally Glass; artist Linnea Glatt; artist Morehshin Allahyari; artist Letitia Huckaby; and Katherine Owens of the Undermain Theater.

With this dynamic set, expect the discussion to be unapologetically frank and insightful, as between them these women can speak on the last 30+ years of the Dallas arts scene, as well as its most current, energetic efforts.

And hey, who knows–maybe next year the boys and girls can both sit up on stage? Let’s imagine that Dallas.

Maura Reilly Leaves Linda Pace Foundation

Dr. Maura Reilly. Photo © Tracey Moffatt

Dr. Maura Reilly. Photo © Tracey Moffatt

The Linda Pace Foundation confirmed today that Executive Director Maura Reilly is no longer with the San Antonio arts nonprofit. Details of her departure have not been disclosed.

Reilly was hired by LPF last year to great fanfare, and was instrumental in launching the foundation’s first public museum, SPACE, which will open April 18 with an exhibition curated by Reilly, “Pace Gems: Selections from the Linda Pace Foundation Permanent Collection.

In December, LPF unveiled their first public artwork in downtown San Antonio with Adam, a large wall painting by Venezuelan artist Arturo Herrera.

Prior to taking the helm at LPF, Reilly was Chair of Art Theory at Griffith University in Australia. She has written many books and articles on contemporary art, and has held several curator posts in New York. Reilly was the founding curator of the Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art at the Brooklyn Museum, where she organized several exhibitions including the critically acclaimed Global Feminisms, co-curated with Linda Nochlin, the permanent re-installation of The Dinner Party by Judy Chicago, Ghada Amer: Love Has No End, Burning Down the House, among many others.

New Alternative Art Space for Houston

post studio

Artist and curator Kim Cook will open a new art space in Houston’s East Downtown Warehouse District next month that will straddle various identities: an art gallery for emerging artists, various residency programs, a member-based laser cutting studio and classes for youth and adults. It’s to be called post-studio projects, a name pulled from John Baldassari’s famous class at CalArts, Post-Studio Practice, which basically means art that deals in everyday life and social interaction.

The inaugural show, called Anti-Cube, will feature a site specific work by Karen Brasier that explores the space and role of the gallery.

And all artists, do note that the gallery is seeking proposals for the 2014-15 exhibition schedule.

Farm Boxes o’ Art!

csa

Modeling itself off of the principles of the CSA (Community Supported Agriculture), wherein people pay a monthly fee to receive a farm box full of assorted farm-fresh produce called a “share,” Fresh Arts in Houston has introduced another CSA, this one: Community Supported Art. The art idea is basically the same as the veggie one: shell out a flat rate, but get a box of art!

“The goal, borrowed from the world of small farms, is a deeper-than-commerce connection between people who make things and people who buy them,” said the New York Times about similar programs in the Northeast and Midwest. “The art programs are designed to be self-supporting: Money from shares is used to pay the artists, who are usually chosen by a jury, to produce a small work in an edition of 50 or however many shares have been sold.”

For the Fresh Arts CSA, nine local artists have been selected by a jury and received a commission to create 50 “shares.” The shares consist of works of art or objects of artistic production. Interested collectors will purchase a share and in return receive three farm boxes of locally produced artwork during three intervals in the season.

The hope is to spread the word about local artists to a set of novice collectors, who are apparently willing to hedge their bets and take whatever art produce gets dealt them, because just like the crate of veggies, you never know what art you’re going to get. Kale? Bluebonnet watercolor. Beets? Pin-up girl collage. Radishes? Digital print. But veggies can be sautéed or chopped into all manner of preferred deliciousness, even okra. Not so with art. Even with the jury process, not all art in a share will appeal to each collector.

But every CSA is a gamble, after all, but one it seems people are willing to take.

Fresh Arts CSA kicks off April 3.

C.S.A. Kick-Off Party
April 3, 2014
6:30 – 8:30 PM
SPARROW Cookshop + Bar
3701 Travis Street
Houston, TX 77002

FotoFest to Host Unprecedented Conference about Art in the Arab World

fotofest

Sama Alshaibi (Iraq), After the Vote, from the Series Between Two Rivers, 2008
Courtesy of the Artist and Ayyam Gallery, Dubai/London

This year’s FotoFest, called View From Inside: Contemporary Arab Photography, Video and Mixed Media, has already garnered a lot of attention for its intense look at the complexities of art being made in the Arab world. “Our focus on Arab art was not motivated by opportunism related to the Arab world’s current prominence in the media,” said FotoFest Co-Founder and Senior Curator Wendy Watriss to e-flux, “but rather by a genuine conviction that the U.S. and Western audiences should have the opportunity to hear from more voices in the region and see the Arab world in more nuanced ways.”

As if the biennial itself weren’t enough to expose Western audiences to those voices, this weekend FotoFest presents a conference at the Museum of Fine Arts Houston called “Visual Arts in the Arab World.” The conference will address the history of art in the region and contemporary issues such as globalization, emerging markets, gender and technology. The conference will bring together a horde of international arts professionals, historians and artists.

It’s also totally free.

Saturday, March 29, 2014, 10am-5pm
Brown Auditorium at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
1001 Bissonnet, Houston, Texas 77005

Austin’s Tiny Park Gallery to Close

tiny park

The much-loved Austin gallery Tiny Park will shutter its doors at the end of April due to rising rent costs and insufficient sales, reports Seth Orion Schwaiger of The Austin Chronicle. Says the gallery owners Brian Willey and Thao Votang: “We will be leaving our Navasota Street location. . . at the close of Miguel Aragon’s exhibition. The blunt facts. . . the rising rent has gotten too high for our limited personal resources, and the Austin art market is still too small. So we will evolve.”

A closure such as Tiny Park’s is endemic in Austin where the food, fashion and music scenes thrive, but where performance and visual arts have never been able to gain real financial traction.  ”Though the city boasts the economy to support a flourishing art scene,” says the Chronicle, ”the Austin-based artist who lives solely off of art sales remains a rare and endangered species.” The same would go for gallerists, it seems, who often pump their own money into floating a gallery space that’s greatly loved by the arts community, but that can’t make any sales because the collector-base for art just hasn’t risen up yet, or collectors who do live there would prefer to buy work from other markets.

This is a familiar tune. Five years ago, Christina Rees let out a battle cry for support of galleries in Dallas, nabbing the famed local beaucoup collectors for lack of skin in the local game. She also poked young artists and business people to do the same–to buy something, anything, to help the art eco-system thrive. In Austin, a city that has come to define the new youth culture, the market is just not there, or at least not able or willing to sustain the gallery aspect of the city’s vibrancy.

Artist Sterling Allen of the lauded Okay Mountain collective, which ran a gallery space in Austin from 2006-13, takes up Rees’ banner: “Our collective made money, but our gallery never did. We’d always spend what money the collective made on maintaining and running the space. If people in Austin who could afford it spent $1,000 on a piece of art just once a year, spaces like ours, Tiny Park, and others could stay open.”

Texas Modernist Buildings Classified as Endangered Species

Kalita Humphreys Theater, Dallas, was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright in 1959. Courtesy The Dallas Morning News.

Kalita Humphreys Theater, Dallas, was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright in 1959. Courtesy The Dallas Morning News.

Questions of stewardship keep coming up in regards to art in public spaces, like Tom Orr and Frances Bagley’s piece in White Rock Lake which is on the docket for decommissioning due to lack of funds to maintain it, or art that is a building in a public space, like Prada Marfa, which, if you live under a rock and didn’t hear, was significantly altered by artist Joseph Magnano a few weeks ago. In both cases, questions of whom should maintain these sites, and to what extent, have served as reminders that art’s longevity largely depends on tending it. Duh.

Dallas Morning News architecture critic Mark Lamster rounds up a list of all of the endangered modernist buildings in Texas, all slated for fates similar to that of the Bagley/Orr piece–getting knocked down because they look old–unless some ruckus can be made in their defense. Among a slew of others, the list includes the Art Barn in Houston and Frank Lloyd Wright’s Kalita Humphrey’s Theater in Dallas.

“The belief that these modern works are ‘unloved’ is often inaccurate and counterproductive,” says Lamster. “More typically, problems germinate from poor stewardship and a host of other factors, from land values to changing building codes, that have little to do with aesthetics. When preservationists find out about troubled buildings, it is often too late.”

Idealistic Graffiti Artist Wants to Paint Heart Across Texas-Mexico Border

GASAK at work. Courtesy KVUE.

GASAK at work. Courtesy KVUE.

GASAK is a 23-year-old street artist from South Africa who has been hanging out in Ciudad Juarzez lately, says Austin’s ABC affiliate, KVUE. He’s a man on a mission, painting portraits of famous peace crusaders – Nelson Mandela, Mother Teresa, Benito Juarez and Mahatma Gandhi – to help quell the violence of the infamously dangerous border town. And while the project may seem naïve at first, his paintings do resonate: “He’s a street artist who helps us remember and recognize our heroes who promoted peace in the past,” said Ramon Serrano, 14, a student in Ciudad Juarez.

But GASAK is running into problems trying to fulfill his real dream of painting eight faces, half in Mexico, half in the United States, that, when completed, will form a heart shape that spans the border. So far, GASAK has had trouble finding property owners on the U.S. side of the border willing to offer wall space for the project, which is ironic. After all, it has become more and more commonplace for businesses to offer wallspace to graffiti artists in order to help create sense of place and lay claim to trendy, artistic street cred. The problem with GASAK’s project, of course, is the trans-border idea: he’s dealing with some highly scrutinized real estate where there ain’t no love.

National PBS Architecture Series to Launch in Dallas + Feature Cowboys Stadium

att stadium COOL SPACES LOGO

Airing April 3 in Dallas, PBS presents a new series on contemporary architecture called Cool Spaces! The Best New Architecture, hosted by architect and teacher Stephen Chung. While the name for the series is a more than little twee, the show actually attempts to highlight the some of the biggest structures around, hoping to elucidate to the public television audience both the technical and conceptual frameworks of some of contemporary architecture’s most ambitious buildings.

The series begins right in our own backyard at the HKS-designed Death Star, I mean Jerry World, I mean Cowboy’s Stadium, I mean AT&T Stadium, where Chung speaks with Jerry Jones about the building, its largess, and its superlatively enormous jumbotrons. In the segment, the technical logistics of the stadium are lauded (biggest single-span roof in the world!), as is its famed art collection (biggest canvases ever!), all while Jerry’s gigantic hands move slowly over an invisible football as he expresses his delight in his football fortress, which he wanted to feel like “walking into the lobby of the Ritz.”