ACQUIRING MINDS WANT TO KNOW
AREA MUSEUMS KEEP IT FRESH WITH RECENT ACQUISITIONS.
A museum is a living organism, one that’s constantly evolving, growing, highlighting various aspects of its holdings,
and occasionally making a home for new acquisitions. Patron takes a look at six of DFW’s premier institutions and
focuses on one of each of their acquisitions from the past 12 months—it’s been a very good year.
A RIVER RUNS THROUGH IT
In 1985, Fort Worth’s Amon Carter Museum of American Art
premiered its commissioned series, In the American West: Photographs
by Richard Avedon. It took nearly three decades for the museum’s next
commission: last year’s Meet Me at the Trinity: Photographs by Terry Evans;
the resulting exhibition closed in late January. Time will tell if the
Trinity images will prove iconic, but the 40+ photographs are now part
of the Carter’s permanent collection, and a welcome addition. The
Evans commission was linked to the museum’s concurrent Navigating
the West: George Caleb Bingham and the River exhibition, as Director
Andrew Walker explains: “There was this great historic connection.
Here we were telling a story about a river in the 19th century, and
there was this completely different yet relational visual experience
which was looking at our own Trinity. We loved that.” Chicagoan
Terry Evans’s images are a beautifully humanistic contemporary
response to the Bingham paintings. cartermuseum.org
PUSHING THE BOUNDARIES
Manchester-born sculptor Garth Evans has been stateside since
1979, but his geometric, expressionistic abstractions, often utilizing
lo-fi materials, have assured his place in the British sculpture world,
and beyond. Frames (Echoes) Group 8, (1971–74) is a painted plywood
enigma that’s just been acquired by the Nasher Sculpture Center, a
gift of Jacqueline and Peter B. Stewart. “Evans did 28 frames over a
three-year period, and he conceived of them primarily in groups,”
explains Nasher Chief Curator Jed Morse. “They came out of an
interest in seeing what he could do with plywood, really pushing the
boundaries of the material’s flexibility.” The Frames series is important
in Evans’ development, as it led to large-scale experimentations
in plywood and steel tubing. “Essentially he’s always looking for
something unexpected, something surprising,” Morse continues.
“In this process of exploration he doesn’t necessarily know what
he’s looking for when he starts, but he knows it when he gets there.”
MAGICAL MOMENT IN MARFA
The Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth recently acquired
over 40 photographs and used that fresh infusion of artistic
wealth to sow the seeds for its current exhibition, Framing
Desire: Photography and Video; the newbies in the show take their
place alongside 70+ photos and videos from the permanent
collection. The museum acquired three works by acclaimed
Dallas photographer Allison V. Smith, Parked, May 2011. Marfa,
Texas, 2012 presents a mesmerizing mystery—how did the
1970 Impala get into the garage, and how did the driver get
out? The color-saturated image is standalone wondrous, but it
also coaxes narrative engagement from viewers. “Allison was
infatuated with the authenticity of Marfa, the part that’s outside
of the art world,” notes Andrea Karnes, the Modern’s curator.
“If you’ve been there you know there’s a magic of Marfa, and
she felt like this image captured one of those moments.” The
show runs through August 23. themodern.org
Upper left: Allison V. Smith, Parked, May 2011. Marfa, Texas, 2012, chromogenic color photograph, image: 46 x 46 in., sheet: 50 x 50 in., framed: 51 x 51 x 2 in.
Collection of the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, Museum purchase, The Friends of Art Endowment Fund. Middle right: Terry Evans, Inner Tubes, 2013, archival inkjet
print © Terry Evans. Bottom left: Garth Evans, British, born 1934, Frames (Echoes) Group 8, 1971–74, painted plywood, 25 x 30 in., 25 x 30 in., 27 x 30 in., 27 x 45 in.
Nasher Sculpture Center, Gift of Jacqueline and Peter B. Stewart