Wall Power "Explosive oversize paintings." Mix! Series - "playful sculpture by Margarita Cabrera and 3D - Art Shirer - Noah in Steel" at The Dallas Center for Contemporary Art " through June 8, 2002

Read our review below.

Installation Day at DCAC

Art Shirer and Sherry Owens unload Art's piece.

De installing tape


Ana de Portela poouring hot tar

Art and Sherry ponder sites

Ana de Portela's sketches
Ana de Portela and blob of hot tar
 Art adjusts one of Mickey's hands installing a big flat piece comprising cutout black paper   

Photos by JR Compton

the trashy remains of a tape installatioon
 Quin Mathews interviews Art Shirer

Lots of activity installing DCAC's Wall Power show — see listing on the Calendar. Left to right from top: Art Shirer and Sherry Owens unload Art's piece for the previously empty sculpture garden.

DCAC workers refurb the far back gallery space where Jennifer Agricola's environmental masking tape installation still lingered; Goo Gone didn't work. Wallpaper stripper needed strenuous physical assistance, and they'd been at it two days already...

Art and Sherry discuss possibille sites. Ana de Portela pours black tar onto panels. Her notebook drawings lay loose on the floor, and she showed us a big old glob of hot, molten tar, ready for application. Art adjusts his just-installed piece, so it'd look best in the background of Quin Mathews' video interview.

Ann Glazer ( on the right ) gets help installing her large, layered black paper piece. Part of the part of the tape piece that was peeled off Wednesday. Quin and two assistants tape Art Shirer's interview. Quin's Art Matters airs on WRR FM 101.1 at 4 Sundays, repeated 7 Thursdays. His video runs through the exhibition.


athy thought the show was fragmented and confused, not just clean, but sparse and incomplete, with not enough work. She said there were some strong pieces — although nothing profound, but the show didn't make sense. JR thought calling it by three different show titles was absurd, especially when there was only one piece each in two of the titles.

JR also wondered what was ethnic, especially Latina, about Margarita Cabrera's big, Two to Tango, fun, rocker in the Mix — formerly Mosaics — "show." We all assumed Otis Jones' nearby abstract O was the intended target when the rocker flipped someone all the way over.

If you didn't already know Art Shirer's piece was ' there,' you probably missed it, lighted but alone in the large, otherwise empty sculpture garden outside. The wind was blowing, and Kathy was disappointed that it wasn't moving.

JR was confused when Dal Contempt director Joan Davidow proudly announced that four of the artists lived outside of Texas — when she's recently been touting the often renamed and recently redirected organization's dedication to Texas artists.


JR liked, but Kathy didn't, Dave Ford's Truck Drawing: El Paso to Dallas 4/4/02-4/5/02, although seeing the renta truck backed into the big side door reminded JR too much of the Oklahoma City Federal Building debacle. Instead of fertilizer, the box was filled with an elaborate, suspended rope grid of drawing pendulums. The drawings weren't wonderful, but the idea was conceptually provocative. The truck, of course, is gone now. All that's left is the drawings. -JR Compton

Kathy and JR both thought Ana de Portela's tar painting, A Swinger of Birches ( above ), was elegant and beautiful, both making positive comments about the glistening texture of the dark arches, although Kathy, a painter, worried that the tar might be a gimmick.

Kathy also liked Chris Kysor's abstract map of West Texas with its little shots of yellow that were fabulous. She thought the unexpected color energized the whole painting.

None of us saw the advertised "live art performance," unless it was people rocking the rocker, which happened informally all evening long. But we liked Scott Barber's immense, digitally inspired untitled painting, which brightly reflected the smallish crowd.

During the director's elaborate, yet over- simplified, half time explication, Scott had to ponder many moments after Joan asked him why using industrial paint was important to his art. Finally he replied, "because it dries fast and it's shiny." -JRCompton and Kathy DelloStritto


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