Spring is a season with shows that appeal to almost every museumgoer’s taste. From the intricate armor of the Japanese warrior to modernist paintings and sculptures by artist David Bates to the environmental devastation depicted by Alexandre Hogue, there’s a lot to keep one’s eyes — and minds — engaged in the coming months.
The Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth and the Nasher Sculpture Center have teamed up for the first time in a joint exploration of Dallas artist David Bates’ colorful oeuvre.
Prolific in the extreme, Bates’ output of hand-painted bronzes and wood sculptures — plus works on paper — are in residence at the Nasher, while 40 of his lushly painted landscapes, self-portraits and still lifes take over the Modern. A thorough retrospective of a more than 40-year career, the dual shows are the chance to experience the wide range of styles employed by this uniquely American artist.
Alexandre Hogue: The Erosion Series
Dallas Museum of Art
February 16-June 15, 2014
A member of the “Dallas Nine” — an early 20th century collective of sculptors, printmakers and painters who focused on the Southwest landscape — Alexandre Hogue became notorious for documenting the aftermath of the Dust Bowl drought.
His oil works and pencil sketches depict the desolation of America’s greatest ecological disaster, and his images of starved cattle, abandoned farms and devastated scenery have as much impact today as when they were first shown.
With more than 25 works drawn from private collections and public institutions, “The Erosion Series” serves as a wake-up call, reminding the viewer that our tenuous relationship with the natural world should be resolved with a deep respect for the land on which we reside.
Michael E. Smith
The Power Station
February 15-March 29, 2014
Opening reception: February 15, 4-7 pm
Known for his enigmatic objects, paintings and videos, Detroit-born, New Hampshire-based artist Michael E. Smith makes the best use of the bare bones confines of a gallery. His Dallas show transforms the Power Station as he defies the industrial space by evoking a sense of weightlessness.
Blacked-out windows force patrons to confront Smith’s primal objects, while streaming video explores the delicacies of the natural world and our innate humanness. This all-encompassing installation is a rare opportunity to immerse oneself in Smith’s ingeniously integrated universe.
Samurai: Armor from the Ann and Gabriel Barbier-Mueller Collection
Kimbell Art Museum
February 16-August 31, 2014
Created in 2012 to hold more than 1,000 objects, the Samurai Collection of Ann and Gabriel Barbier-Mueller is a low-profile treasure tucked away in the Saint Ann Building above the popular bistro of the same name. Now highlights from the Barbier-Mueller’s spectacular collection are taking a well-deserved turn in the spotlight at the Kimbell’s new Renzo Piano Pavilion.
Included among the 140 works on display are ornate helmets and masks, life-sized armored horse figures, and 18 full suits of armor — one formerly owned by the Yoshiki brand of the Mori clan. “Samurai” is an elaborate introduction to the “way of the warrior” and the Japanese tradition of honor, loyalty and acceptance of death.