Dallas Museum of Art Announces 2018 Acquisition and Program Highlights
Museum Appointed New Leadership Across Education and Curatorial Departments and Mounted New Initiatives to Support Community Engagement
The Dallas Museum of Art (DMA) continued to strengthen and expand its exhibitions and educational programming, bilingual offerings, and curatorial team in 2018 with the appointment of new leadership across departments, the development of expanded education initiatives, and the acquisition of major works across its collections. In support of the DMA’s commitment to engaging the community through programs anchored by its collections, three new curators and a new director of education joined the Museum in 2018, and the Museum expanded its off-site and bilingual program offerings. The Museum also added significant works to its collection, including 13 year-end gifts of 512 works of art in contemporary art, sculpture, photography, and the decorative arts.
“With education as a core priority for the Museum and a renewed focus on offering engaging experiences with the DMA’s outstanding collection, the DMA has made exciting strides in 2018,” said the Museum’s Eugene McDermott Director Dr. Agustín Arteaga. “In addition to building our collection in thoughtful ways that enhance our ability to illustrate new narratives in art history, I am thrilled by the innovative steps we have taken across our educational and curatorial departments. We are well poised to continue building on our strategic plan and ambitious goals for community engagement and innovative programs in 2019 and beyond.”
A critical component of the DMA’s commitment to community engagement, the Museum’s education department, known as the Center for Creative Connections (C3), gained new leadership with the appointment of Claire Moore as The Allen and Kelli Questrom Center for Creative Connections Education Director. In her first year, Moore, in collaboration with Museum leadership, has taken steps to further integrate education strategies across the Museum and collaborate with every department, from curatorial to marketing. As the Museum seeks to develop programming that reflects the diversity of its surrounding community, the department has spearheaded the Museum’s mounting of bilingual programs that serve the Dallas–Fort Worth community, which is 42% Hispanic. As part of this initiative, the DMA added six bilingual staff to the education team in 2018 to support bilingual programs at the Museum and at offsite school and community programs. They include Mary Ann Bonet, Director of Community Engagement, and Azucena Verdin, Evaluator. In addition, C3 formed a new Community Programs team within the department to expand the Museum’s year-round programming for youth, families, and adults at partner sites ranging from libraries to senior centers, building on the DMA’s 40-year history of offsite art-making experiences offered through the signature Go van Gogh® (GvG) outreach program. Lastly, the Dallas Museum of Art League endowed the department’s Director of Adult Programs, a position held by Stacey E. Lizotte.
In conjunction with the Museum’s strategic plan, the DMA strengthened and expanded its curatorial leadership in 2018 with the appointments of Sarah Schleuning as The Margot B. Perot Senior Curator of Decorative Arts and Design and Michelle Rich as The Ellen and Harry S. Parker III Assistant Curator of the Arts of the Americas. The Museum additionally appointed Heather Ecker to the newly created cross-cultural and endowed position of The Marguerite S. Hoffman and Thomas W. Lentz Curator of Islamic and Medieval Art. Last year also saw the endowment of the DMA’s first Marcus-Rose Family Deputy Director position, held by Tamara Wootton Forsyth and made possible through a $3 million gift from Catherine Marcus and Will Rose.
In addition, major new works entered the DMA’s collection in 2018, enhancing the depth and range of opportunities for the Museum to illustrate narratives of art history. Ranging from contemporary works by artists Ed Clark and Arthur Jafa, to modern paintings by Ida Ten Eyck O’Keeffe and Pablo Picasso, to modern and contemporary design objects by Najla El Zein and Richard Meier, to a significant Old Master painting by Derick Baegert, the recent acquisitions reflect a diversity of genres, mediums, and perspectives from around the globe and across history. In addition to 13 year-end gifts, the DMA received 32 19th- and early 20th-century artworks in 2018 as the final bequest of Margaret McDermott, the Museum’s single largest benefactor with her late husband, Eugene McDermott. The gift to the McDermott Art Fund to benefit the DMA included masterworks by Ernst Barlach, Pierre Bonnard, Eugène-Louis Boudin, Georges Braque, Gustave Caillebotte, Paul Cézanne, Edgar Degas, Robert Delaunay, André Derain, Walt Kuhn, Jacques Lipchitz, Claude Monet, Edvard Munch, Georgia O’Keeffe, Fernand Léger, Henry Moore, Pablo Picasso, Camille Pissarro, Maurice Brazil Prendergast, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Paul Signac, and Alfred Sisley.
Anchored by the Museum’s collection, several major exhibitions were presented in 2018 that contributed new art historical scholarship and offered audiences new discoveries. They include Ida O’Keeffe: Escaping Georgia’s Shadow, the first-ever solo museum exhibition for the under-recognized artist; Günther Förg: A Fragile Beauty, the first comprehensive museum exhibition for the artist in more than two decades; Women + Design: New Works, a focused exhibition featuring new works by seven contemporary female designers; and The Power of Gold: Asante Royal Regalia from Ghana, inspired by works in the DMA’s collection and revealing the splendor of Asante gold regalia. In support of its exhibitions program, the DMA additionally received a $4 million gift from longtime patrons Beverly and Donald S. Freeman to establish the Freeman Exhibition Fund. The fund is designed to advance the presentation of special exhibitions across the DMA’s encyclopedic collection.