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Arts / Museums

Dallas Museum of Art’s New Chapel is an Exciting Coup — Walk Into the Wonder

Arlington Artist's Work Brings You Inside the Art

BY // 08.01.19

The Dallas Museum of Art has acquired an exciting new piece by Arlington-based artist Francisco Moreno. Chapel, a large scale painting installation, was initially shown at Dallas’ Erin Cluley Gallery in 2018. An immersive piece, the arched structure allows you to walk inside and become encompassed in the murals.

Born in Mexico City, Moreno moved to Arlington at age 6. He’s attended the Conceptual Design Summer Program at the Tecnológico de Monterrey, Querétaro Campus in Mexico, completed his bachelor’s degree at the University of Texas at Arlington, and obtained his master’s in fine arts from the Rhode Island School of Design.

His work has been shown all across the United States, including New York City and San Juan, Puerto Rico, but this is his first piece to be acquired by such a prestigious museum on a permanent basis.

Experiential and immersive art is a huge trend at the moment, and Moreno’s piece is definitely a kind of experience. When you walk inside of the chapel-like structure, you’ll see paintings of roses, people, geometric, almost optical-illusion like shapes and industrial machinery. Then there’s an illuminated light at the end of the “tunnel.”

The imagery is painted like a collage, integrating processes that cross cultural borders and recognize Moreno’s heritage as a Mexican-born American citizen. Inspiration comes from an archive of different kinds of work like his past work, sculpture, architecture and ideas of Baroque aesthetics.

“Moreno’s Chapel is indicative of the goals of the DMA’s collection and programming plans: to promote innovative contemporary art that engages with the past, where it can be seen in the context of our rich encyclopedic collection,” says Anna Katherine Brodbeck, the Hoffman Family senior curator of contemporary art.

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”Indeed, many touchstones for Moreno’s immersive and singular vision— Baroque, Meso-American and modern art — can be seen throughout the museum. We are so proud to include this ambitious installation by a Dallas-based artist in our collection and look forward to putting it on view to be enjoyed by our audiences in the near future.”

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