A three-year residence at the Dallas Contemporary of Richard Phillips’ Playboy Marfa is coming to a close. The Dallas Contemporary has announced that the piece, which was installed for Phillips’ solo show at the Contemporary in 2014, will be taken down the first week in April.
Via the Contemporary: “The work was originally intended to be on view for only a year, but its presentation was extended as it became a much-loved fixture of the Dallas Design District.” (‘Much-loved’ is debatable. It is nonetheless distinctive.)
Playboy’s special projects director Neville Wakefield contacted Phillips about a Playboy art commission in 2012 as the magazine was giving itself an image makeover, and Phillips decided to site the two-pronged sculpture in Marfa. The side-by-side 1972 Dodge Charger and 40-foot-high Playboy bunny logo lived along Highway 90 briefly in 2013; Marfans and the Texas Department of Transportation weren’t pleased about this. So it found a new home in Dallas. When it was first installed in Marfa, Phillips called it “…a beacon, a touchstone where all these different aspects of our lives — art, politics, sex — come together without contradiction.” Phillips has had a presence in Dallas as a collected artist for years, and as of 2016 was on the Dallas Contemporary’s board of directors. His show at the Contemporary was his first institutional solo exhibition.