Arts / Galleries

No Ordinary Art Haven — Dallas’ Site131 Delves Into Architectural Orderliness

Four Artists Reach for Nirvana in Compelling New Exhibition

BY // 10.23.19

When posed with the two words: architectural orderliness, one’s mind might venture in a myriad of directions from a meticulously designed minimal interior to an OCD space that seems unrelentingly restrained. When an exhibition is described as a series of works — paintings, collage, sculpture, digital pieces — that explores the concept of “architectural orderliness,” it’s definitely intriguing and one might go as far as to say enticing.

Such is the mission of curator Joan Davidow’s latest show, “Structured,” at Site131, the Dallas Design District gallery she opened in 2016, alongside her son Seth Davidow, following her longtime tenure as director of Dallas Contemporary. The gallery’s genesis was a conversation the two had during Art Basel Miami a few years prior. Seth, an entrepreneur and developer, had a vision for a mid-century warehouse on Payne Street. He enlisted the assistance of David Droese of Droese Raney Architecture, who then transformed it to a minimal space perfect for observing and reflecting upon contemporary art.

“Structured,” which opened in September and runs through mid-December, features four artists — all of whom have never exhibited in Dallas.

“The title came as it usually does,” Davidow says, “from the first artist I engage for an exhibition.”

In this case, it was “the finiteness of Hungarian artist Zsofia Schweger’s spare interiors and stacked bookshelves,” which prompted inspiration for the show, Davidow notes. Also on view: American artist Richard Tuschman, whose figures, when placed in everyday settings, evoke an air of longing; Danish artist Anne Damgaard, in her first United States show, who forces us to question garments as structural works of objets d’art; and Cristina Velasquez, a Colombian-born artist now based in Texas, whose intricate collages require close examination.

Go and see if you think these artists collectively achieve that nirvana-like realm one might call architectural orderliness.

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Structured” at Site131, through December 14, 131 Payne Street, site131.org.

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