The Fort Worth Art Dealers Association Tour
Photos and Story by
Kathleen Dello-Stritto and J R Compton
The Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth closed at 5, one minute after we arrived. The receptionist was dismissive of passing on a DARts business card, but we liked this double metal figure outside.
Art in the Metroplex at TCU
First stop, the AiM show at TCU. Long time between visits. Small space, intimate exhibition of the top tier of what we've seen this year. Connie Connally's large, multi-portrait from The MAC show dominated one wall. John Holt Smith's The Swimmer powered from another — after also debuting at The MAC.
Rosemary Meza's wild, larger than life drawing of a woman juggling penile shapes, still shocks from a smaller wall. ( Examples of other Meza drawings. ) Marilyn Walligore's large ring photo collage near the door was likewise impressive. AiM was true — tiny and wonderful and even.
The MAC was well represented. The Bath house, too. Even community colleges. Didn't recognize anything we'd first seen at DVAC.
A strip of shops along Park Place, off Park Place, off Forest Park, off Park Hill, off University: The Alpine is a jewelry shop, gallery wannabe with naked girl self portraits by Cyn McCurry. Schmedel & Reznikoff is a wood shop with luscious, mixed media painting drawings on dark colored newsprint containing, wood framed glass chambers of dirt and too polished, etched rocks.
The dirt was wonderful, but we wanted the rocks to look real, too. An untitled place that may have just been adjacent, but not on the official map, had giant, dark metal nuts and bolts by a sculptor with a day job as an ad guy, who didn't want to sell any of his precious pieces.
Designer's Resource Studio had almost good, a little too serious cowgirl art — Cowgirls - Women with Attitude by Debbie Little-Wilson and a marvelous variety of chocolate truffles.
Back toward I-30 and facing it from a busy shopping center, Uncommon Angles offered Olde Moon quality gifts and crafts, fabulous mixed media colored glass window hangings by Tina McIntyre and superb pastry deserts by Joan Brodnax. Wonderful, large gift shop.
Up Camp Bowie past the museums to the colorful paintings, muted textures and thoughtful works at William Campbell, where we liked Kevin Tolman's foot-squares of etched colors, Stephen Daly's ink on paper, dye on cast aluminum and enamel on steel constructions with devices extending out from the framed glass drawings, Dan Allison's luscious textured Sacret Heart, 2001 collograph on canvas and Scott Parson's Akari in Space oil on paper — vivid in cobalt, ultramarine and turquoise.
We knew we were truly in Fort Worth when we arrived at Rebecca Low Sculptural Metal Gallery and Studio. Next door to an hourly motel in a light industrial area, the building advertises itself in assorted neon.
An all girl band consistng of two elderly women played inside while the crowd mingled, ate hor'derves, and admired the witty sculptures. Many wore "Rebecca Low" T-shirts. All were family and friends.
We expected Ms. Low to be younger until a middle-aged woman admired the conservative colors of my Hawaiian shirt. Turned out to be the lady herself. In Dallas this place would be pompous, pretentious, and arrogant. What a difference going West makes.
Evelyn Siegel, closer to Museum row, had gone commercial since our last visit, too many years ago to count. The one piece that stood out in that crowded labyrinth was the largish Funeral Procession by Sedrick Huckaby, who must have lay on the sidewalk and looked up into startled faces along the path of. Vivid colors and expression.
Also admired the great bold black wood fames on Melodee Martin Ramirez' vertical pair of palm tree oils. Less so the ubiquitous Doug West.
Had heard good things about the solid NRH gallery in the back of a shopping strip off several forgettable roads in North Richland Hills. Extensive framing and shipping space — they organized and delivered the recent Gregory Horndeski shows at Plano Art Center and now at Arlington Museum of Art ( which closed early on Gallery Evening ) behind the extensive, open gallery spaces, a margarita machine labeled "electric lemonade," and fun people, but would we ever find it again?
Our final stop on a long, weary ride was a much smaller space, in a strip that had apparently been there along East Lancaster for decades. Handley-Hicks has wall to wall fine art funk. We marveled at several Norman Kary constructions, especially a benign appearing, found-clown toy figure standing in a bell jar with a tea strainer halo. Peering around in back of the small figure, we saw a wind-up key and the sharp ends of multiple nails. This God that appears to be a clown you could wind up, is really disturbing.
We also admired a lovely, bold, double-wall, stoneware Doug Grey Spirit Vessel shape, with tiny holes around the top, opening to something, we known not what, then dipped into a warm, red vessel. The holes are decorated with filigree, not lotus. Nice gallery, friendly poeple, but too many concepts. The featured exhibition, Chaos and Order, of textured blue plastic figures, was lost on us, although perhaps applied to the whole building.
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