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Dallas Observer: Your Guide to 14 of Dallas’ Lesser-Known, Outlier Galleries by Lee Escobedo

July 15, 2013

While we hear a lot about Dallas’ emerging artist movement, what’s less publicized, though equally compelling, is the emerging gallery force.


In the last couple years we’ve watched makeshift spaces spring up everywhere, many of which are artist-run or double as homes and studios. At these start-ups you’ll find folks doing critically engaging work in contemporary settings, tucked away from the bustle of Dragon Street or the more established Deep Ellum circuit of Barry Whistler, Kirk Hopper, Public Trust and CentralTrak.

Since most of these business’ curators and founders would consider themselves artists first, they’ve extended invitations to show each other’s work on their own walls, creating a reflexive, referential web that connects each smaller neighborhood hideout to a larger, more cooperative community.

Here’s a roster of newbies to the scene that are expanding the dialogue of “What is a gallery?” and taking that conversation into new directions, many without the aid of a formal gallery dealer alliance.

Studio Don’t Fuck This Up (DTFU)
The gallery’s name should be an open plea to all of us: fellow galleries, funders, patrons, landlords and the like. Artists, partners and S.C.A.B. members, Lucy Kirkman and Justin Hunter Allen founded the gallery last year as a manifesto on maintaining independence through low overhead and fostering a community of Dallas-based, artist-run exhibition spaces. Programmed from their living room in Fair Park, Studio DTFU thrives on risk-taking and a dedication to DIY aesthetics, while showcasing confidants, confederates and co-op minded artists working in experimental mediums.
Address: 842 1st Ave.

Homeland Security
I remember asking co-founder and S.C.A.B. member Kelly Kroener if she had ever received angry letters directed to the government’s Department of Homeland Security. She hadn’t, but agreed, “That would be pretty cool.” While those collected letters would make for a pretty interesting exhibition, Kroener and partner Eli Walker have been busy curating intimate and affecting shows at their gallery, which they also live in. Both Kroener and Walker have shown this year as well, with Walker exhibiting Regional Quarterly Vol.2 – CONCRETE JUNGLE at Circuit 12 and Kroener exhibiting next door for a solo show at RE Gallery.
Address: 1715 Gould St.

That That
S.C.A.B. members Alex DiJulio and Samantha McCurdy’s studio sits upstairs in a nondescript Expo Park building. Once inside, you’re prone to find a thoughtfully curated exhibit of Lucy Kirkman’s paintings, or perhaps the third issue release party forsemigloss. Magazine. But most of the time, you’ll find these two artists at work on their next project, like their recent Lite Brite sculpture that used food-colored water bottles as plugs. That That is a great example of the DIY spirit and its ability to blur the lines between work and home, creating an intimate and unique gallery setting.
Address: 3901 Main St.

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Glasstire: Lucy Kirkman: Library of Babel at That That by Lucia Simek

Because their surfaces seemed to sparkle, I thought at first that Lucy Kirkman’s paintings, installed at the lovely (but non-air conditioned and, therefore, very hot) That That gallery in Dallas, were covered in a layer of fine glitter. The paintings are actually coated in rabbit skin glue which is used in traditional gesso. Used on its own as a sealant, Kirkman informed me, rabbit skin glue has a metallic quality—a little-known fact.

Kirkman’s show, Library of Babel, is replete with little-known facts. Without clues, they are are puzzling and elusive, an organized yet confusing compendium, as the title suggests. Inspired by Jorge Luis Borges story The Library of Babel, which describes the universe as an infinite library of nonsensical books, Kirkman’s show is compiled of groups of triptychs that are paintings within paintings—expertly rendered book pages are painted atop shimmery linen or transparent silk or careless painterly marks on canvas. The book pages are (save in one triptych) seemingly identical throughout each set, with imagery culled from Kirkman’s own private library of references, both literary and art historical.

…

Glasstire: Travis Iurato: PRIVATE COLLECTION at DTFU by Richard Bailey on June 25

PRIVATE COLLECTION, now on display at Studio DTFU in Dallas was born out of a correspondence through the mail between Brooklyn-based artist Travis Iurato and DTFU Co-directors Justin Hunter Allen and Lucy Kirkman. There are only four works in PRIVATE COLLECTION and each one is a lively communicator.

The devil in Devil in the Details arrives first to celebrate the corruption of a pattern. The gallery’s acronym on the address line of the envelope has been obliterated by whiteout and rebuilt using a different letter order. The gallery’s full name is Don’t Fuck This Up. Its official acronym is DTFU. (Allen and Kirkman rearranged the letters for their own private reasons.) Iurato reinstates the acronym as DFTU. Who’s to say which is correct? The devil seems brightly pleased to be dominating even this minor bit of chaos. His arrival in the gallery through a mail slot prompts an irresistible temptation to consider the devil’s other visits in history.


Dallas Observer: Library of Babel, Lucy Kirkman’s New Show at That That, Deserves its Own Place in a Book by Betsy Lewis June 12

Lucy Kirkman’s solo show at That That, a hard-to-find new art space in a Deep Ellum building that you’ve passed a million times (think of the Finley Shirts window on Main Street), is rooted in the Jorge Luis Borges short story “Library of Babel,” 10 dense and challenging pages of text lacking a defined narrative structure. It’s had many English language interpretations from the original Spanish, but this exhibition is Kirkman’s loose, accessible visual translation.


THRWD Magazine: The Ten: Lucy Kirkman By Javier on June 7, 2013

Lucy Kirkman is asking for your time. On top of that she expects you to be slightly uncomfortable as you enter into her world, one filled with the unspoken, ambiguous, and personal references. That’s a lot to ask a viewer. Without a cultural reference point for the patron to pullfrom, you are left to your own devices, bringing in your own fears, desires and knowledge into the interpretation. As we align ourselves with an increasingly singularity style of living, Kirkman’s newest exhibit, “Library of Babel” at the That That studio (operated by fellow S.C.A.B. member’s Alex DiJulio and Samantha McCurdy) is a breath of fresh air. Kirkman lets us unplug for a bit from the immediacy of the “retweet,” and plug into the labyrinth of sentimentality. For this edition of The Ten, THRWD corresponded with Kirkman about her upcoming show..

1. Tell us about your goals as an artist in Dallas. What do you hope to accomplish with both S.C.A.B. and as a solo artist?

As a solo artist, make good paintings or other forms of work; continue learning and developing; support myself through my work. With DTFU/SCAB, I aim to develop a place where I can do the above within a contemporary scene. I want to build a structure I can thrive in, as well as put on interesting and challenging exhibitions.


S.C.A.B. Open Hours Today

Today’s hours:
Dirty New Rococo – CLOSING TODAY!
Homeland Security, 1415 Beaumont St, 75215

Studio DTFU, 842 1st Ave (Ring DTFU buzzer), 75226

Library of Babel
That That, 3901 Main St B (Enter on Washington) 75226

Ordinary and Everyday
RE Gallery, 1717 Gould St, 75215

S.C.A.B. Open Gallery Day, 15 June 2013

Dear Friends,
The S.C.A.B. members would like to invite you to tour the concurrent exhibitions arranged by S.C.A.B. or including S.C.A.B. members from 2-6pm Saturday June 15 for the first S.C.A.B. Open Gallery Day.
– Lucy

Announcing the first S.C.A.B. Open Gallery Day , 2-6pm Saturday June 15. Tour S.C.A.B. produced exhibitions throughout the city of Dallas during this open-door event, plus view works of S.C.A.B. member artists at other friendly spaces. Participating: Homeland SecurityStudio DTFUThat That RE Gallery.
S.C.A.B. shows currently on display in Dallas:
Dirty New Rococo by Homeland Security
1415 Beaumont St, Dallas, TX 75215
Works by Edmund Chia, Alexander DiJulio, Heyd Fontenot, Matthew Janson, Brian K. Jones, Samantha McCurdy, Ruben Melendez, Easton Miller, and Brian K. Scott. Ongoing through June 21.
“The show appears to be a naughty love letter, or perhaps sext, to an all too familiar celebration of spectacle, sensationalism and saturation in the modern art scene.”
-Lee Escobedo, Dallas Observer
And recommended by Glasstire!
Mayflowers at Homeland Security
1715 Gould St, Dallas, TX 75215
Works by Lorie Ammon, Ginger Berry, Julie Bonand, Janeil Engelstad, Gabbe Grodin, Saffron Herndon, James Hugh, Julia Mclain, Albert Scherbarth, Ellen Smith, and Carolyn Sortor. Closing June 15.
Library of Babel at That That
3901 Main St B, Corner of Washington, Dallas, TX 75226
New paintings by Lucy Kirkman. Ongoing through June 30 (Extended!).
“She expects you to be slightly uncomfortable as you enter into her world, one filled with the unspoken, ambiguous, and personal references… Kirkman’s newest exhibit, “Library of Babel” at the That That studio (operated by fellow S.C.A.B. member’s Alex DiJulio and Samantha McCurdy) is a breath of fresh air. Kirkman lets us unplug for a bit from the immediacy of the “retweet,” and plug into the labyrinth of sentimentality.”
-Javier Valadez, THRWD Magazine
Lucy Kirkman, Life of Forms, oil and graphite on canvas, 2013

Lucy Kirkman, Life of Forms, oil and graphite on canvas, 2013

842 First Ave, Dallas, TX 75226
Works by Travis Iurato from DTFU’s Collection. Opening June 14, ongoing through June 29.
StudioDTFU_Iurato_DevilIsInTheDetails_400px copy
And don’t miss the work of S.C.A.B. artists at these friendly spaces:
The Ordinary and the Everyday at RE Gallery
1717 Gould St, Dallas, TX 75215
Works by Maisie Marie Alford, Rebecca Carter, Nan Coulter, Shelby Cunningham, Vince Jones, Lucy Kirkman, Peter Ligon, Michelle Mackey, Kevin Parmer, Albert Scherbarth, Sam Schonzeit, Sarah Elizabeth Stevens, Carroll Swenson-Roberts, Bruce Lee Webb, Jeff F. Wheeler. Opens June 14.
Good Nuts at the Ochre House Theatre
825 Exposition Ave, Dallas, TX 75226
Good Nuts at the Ochre House Theatre

Good Nuts at the Ochre House Theatre

Written and directed by Kevin Grammer, with Carla Parker, Brian Witkowitcz, Marti Etheridge, Trent Stephenson, and Ben Bryant, Artistic Direction by Matthew Posey, Scenic design by Justin Hunter Allen andLucy KirkmanLast Performance: 8:15pm Saturday June 15
“You’ll laugh till you blow beer through your nose.”
-Martha Heimberg, TheaterJones

Surface and Mark
 at El Centro College Art Gallery
Main & Lamar, Dallas, TX 75202

Summer Hours: Monday-Thursday 12-4pm, Friday 12-3pm
Works by Justin Hunter Allen, C.J. Davis, Timothy Harding, Nicholas Mathis, Jeff Parrott, Arthur Peña, Ben Terry, Michael Wynne. Ongoing through July 3.
Surface and Mark at El Centro. Curated by Randall Garrett.

Surface and Mark at El Centro. Curated by Randall Garrett.