Art in Dallas

Dallas is a leading national art center with excellent museums and contemporary art galleries. The density of the Dallas art community gives students opportunities to see significant works of art and where they might lead. The Division of Art’s Pollock Gallery brings to SMU numerous exhibitions focused around intense learning. The Meadows Museum at SMU not only boasts Velázquez, Picasso, El Greco, Goya and Murillo in its permanent collection but features several international exhibitions each year. Art in the Meadows School asks students to have something to say and to have the discipline to say it.

Other significant regional resources include:


The Dallas Museum of Art is a major museum that houses a large collection from diverse cultures and many centuries. Located in the Arts District, it offers numerous opportunities to the community through events, collections and exhibitions. Other opportunities such as internships and artist awards are a few other unique programs offered through the DMA to young, upcoming artists.

The Nasher Sculpture Center, designed by Renzo Piano, houses a wonderful collection of modern and contemporary sculpture. Also well known for its beautiful sculpture garden, the Nasher is an outstanding Dallas resource.

The Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, created by architect Tadao Ando, shows an impressive collection of post-1945 paintings, sculptures, photographs and video art. Besides its notable exhibitions and collection, it offers an engaging lecture series providing a wonderful opportunity to local students.

The Kimbell Art Museum offers a small but outstanding collection of European, Asian, Latin American and African Art, and is housed in Louis Kahn’s seminal building. It is located directly across from the Ft. Worth Modern, and these two museums together provide Fort Worth with an outstanding art and cultural resource and experience.

The Amon Carter Museum of American Art is located across from the Ft. Worth Modern and Kimbell. This museum is housed in a recently expanded Philip Johnson building, and has one of the world’s best collections of American photography and a very strong collection of American paintings and sculpture. Offering an array of exhibitions, publications, and programs, the Amon Carter seeks to connect visitors with masterworks of American art.

The Dallas Contemporary is a non-collecting institution whose aim is to present new and challenging ideas from regional, national and international artists. The Dallas Contemporary engages the public via its exhibitions, lectures, educational programs and events.

The Crow Museum of Asian Art has, over the past 20 years, grown and flourished as the Asian art museum of Dallas. Founded by Margaret and Trammell Crow, it opened on December 5, 1998, as a gift to the people and visitors of Dallas. Beginning with a selection of just over 600 works, the Crow’s unique permanent collections have expanded to include more than 1,000 artworks. It currently showcases the artistic achievements of more than 6,000 years of art and culture from across Asia, including Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Myanmar, Nepal, Thailand, Tibet and Vietnam. The museum’s exhibitions and public programs have been recognized regionally, nationally and internationally.

Gallery and Art Spaces

Sweet Pass Sculpture Park is an artist run, DIY exhibition space located on a one-acre lot in West Dallas. Its programming highlights emerging and mid-career artists in an outdoor setting. Sweet Pass is a project by Tamara Johnson and Trey Burns.

Craighead Green represents the finest in contemporary art from nationally and internationally recognized artists. Gallery director Kenneth Craighead and partner Steve Green opened the gallery in 1992 in the Dallas Arts District. They later purchased a building and relocated the Gallery to the Design District. Caroline Irvin joined the Gallery as assistant director in 2016.

The Reading Room is a project space dedicated to the intersection of visual and text-based culture though exhibitions, readings and performances.

Culture Hole: At precisely 32°47’04.2″N + 96°46’16.3″W there is a hole. It is a modest hole with concrete walls and floor. A small metal ladder serves as entrance to the hole, some six feet below the Earth’s surface. Historically the hole has taken on various forms: cooling reservoir, la bodega, oubliette, and now CULTURE HOLE. Organized by artists Jeff Gibbons and Gregory Ruppe, CULTURE HOLE features exhibitions and performances by artists in an underground project space, located at 3816 Commerce Street.

Site 131 is a nonprofit art space that spotlights the concept of pairing – presenting new art from America and abroad side-by-side with new works by Texas artists. By coupling bright, mostly young talents who deal with similar issues, Site 131 hopes to help art audiences see novel connections and find a unique context for understanding contemporary art in new ways.

Frank Elbaz Gallery opened in 2002 in the district of Le Marais, Paris. In 2016, the gallery inaugurated a second location in Dallas, Texas. The gallery promotes French creation by presenting the work of Davide Balula, Bernard Piffaretti and others. Simultaneously, it offers insight into the American scene, exhibiting artists such as Ja’Tovia Gary, Sheila Hicks, William Leavitt, Kaz Oshiro, Mungo Thomson, and Blair Thurman. The European sector is also explored with artist Ketuta Alexi-Meskhishvili. Over the years, the gallery has focused on rediscovering historical artists including Jean-Michel Atlan, Wallace Berman, Jay DeFeo, Dmitri Prigov, as well as artists from the Zagreb conceptual scene, such as the Gorgona Group (Julije Knifer, Mangelos, Josip Vanista), Tomislav Gotovac, and Mladen Stilinovic. The gallery regularly invites curators and artists to propose exhibition projects. It participates in many international art fairs such as Frieze Art Fair (New York), Art Basel (Basel), Expo Chicago (Chicago), Fiac (Paris), Paris Photo (Paris) and Art Basel Miami Beach (Miami).

Liliana Bloch Gallery is a contemporary art gallery founded in 2013. The gallery represents emerging and mid-career artists working regionally, nationally, and internationally in all media. The Gallery provides a unique and personalized approach to building outstanding contemporary collections, emphasizing artwork that addresses contemporary issues with strong historical ties. We work to create a dialogue between institutional and private curators, collectors, galleries, educational venues and the general public. 

Aurora: Immersive and engaging, AURORA is an expansive free public art event that transforms Downtown Dallas into an open-air, urban playground of new media art that is not to be missed. With installations of light, video and sound presented in unexpected places, the sunset signals the transformation of the city into one of the nation’s largest outdoor exhibitions.

Inner Space Chamber Gallery is a contemporary chamber gallery founded in the West Side neighborhood of Jersey City, N.J., in December 2016. After a brief hiatus, it relocated to Dallas, transforming 217 sq. ft. of charming residential space into an exhibition and performance space. The idea of Inner Space operating as a chamber gallery originated from the concept of chamber music, which began during the 5th century and continues today. Chamber pieces were traditionally performed in palace rooms, composed for small groups of musicians, and were noted for a social and intimate nature not typically found in orchestral works. Johann Wolfgang von Goethe described chamber pieces as "rational people conversing."

AND/NOW Gallery: Contemporary Art Gallery located in Dallas.

Fort Worth Contemporary Arts offers a platform for innovative contemporary art from an international context. Its regularly changing exhibition program seeks to reflect significant developments in art and their critical reception. Fort Worth Contemporary Arts is part of The Art Galleries at TCU.

The Public Trust is a contemporary art gallery, which prides itself on showcasing the talents of working artists, musicians and designers from all over the country.

Marty Walker Gallery is committed to exhibiting contemporary art focused on inventive use of materials and/or process-oriented works as well as outstanding works in video, photography, sculpture and painting.

Since Conduit Gallery's inception in 1984, its focus has been to forge a link between contemporary artists’ work and the public. The gallery represents established mid-career artists and young, new talent. The program includes three exhibitions that run concurrently, including in the Project Room, committed to showing works – often experimental or small – by artists not represented.

Barry Whistler Gallery, established in 1985, primarily focuses on Texas artists exhibiting and selling contemporary paintings, sculptures, prints, drawings, and photography as well as installation and performance works.

Holly Johnson Gallery has devoted itself to the representation of emerging, mid-career and internationally known artists from throughout the United States.

Galleri Urbane Marfa+ Dallas is a leader in the presentation and promotion of contemporary art in both Marfa and Dallas, Texas. The Dallas showroom is an extension of their main gallery in Marfa. They present work of emerging and mid-career artists in painting, sculpture, photography and conceptual work that is both visually and intellectually stimulating.

Valley House Gallery and Sculpture Garden, a modernist-style gallery, along with a beautiful 4-plus-acre sculpture garden, is situated in its original North Dallas location. Valley House Gallery represents established and emerging contemporary artists working in traditional media (including painting, sculpture, works on paper, and photography.) The gallery also deals in 19th and 20th century American and European art, and specializes in reintroducing significant Early Texas art.

500X is Texas’ oldest, artist-run, cooperative gallery. Established in 1978, 500X provides one of the best exhibition spaces to up and coming artists in the city of Dallas. The gallery is located in a historic, circa 1916 tire factory and air-conditioning warehouse and has over 3000 square feet of exhibition space.


100 West Corsicana: Grants artists and writers space to create work in this historic building repurposed for studio space. Large scale, light filled rooms are provided alongside complete living accommodations and wood shop access to produce work in two or three dimension, installation, or writing. This residency experience is enriched by artist-made furniture and antiques in a building virtually unaltered since 1898. Original mill work, light fixtures,painted doors and walls now cracked and worn remain amid three years of preservation work, and effectively contrast contemporary modes of art making. 100W maintains a close connection with Dallas art culture less than an hour away from downtown Corsicana,where faded vestiges of the nineteenth century oil boom make it quintessentially Texas.

Private Collections

The Rachofsky House was designed by Richard Meier to showcase and rotate this extensive contemporary art collection.

The Power Station is a not-for-profit initiative dedicated to providing a platform for ambitious contemporary art projects in Dallas. Housed in a Power & Light building constructed in 1920, it invites artists to respond to the raw character of the architecture, offering an alternative to the traditional gallery and museum context. Geared toward an international audience and most immediately, the community of Dallas, the bold programming serves as a catalyst to provoke public discourse around art and culture.

The Karpidas Family Collection was started by Pauline Karpidas, a Manchester-born arts patron and widow of a Greek shipping magnate. Since the mid-1970s, she has been putting together a very large and significant collection. She is a benefactor of a number of major institutions, including the Tate in London and New York’s New Museum, and her workshop gallery on the Greek island of Hydra is renowned for its ambitious and experimental programming. If you ever meet anyone who has visited her London townhome, they will whisper about an astounding assemblage of surrealist paintings.

The Goss-Michael Foundation is a collection comprised of primarily British Contemporary art and includes approximately 500 works by more than 100 of the most prominent British artists working today. Each work is personally chosen by the founders and therefore reflects their personal preferences, tastes and interests as well as those of the artists with whom they have formed friendships. Michael and Goss have assembled a collection of innovative and provocative pieces that often relate to one another through shared themes: sexuality and its relationship to one’s being; personal identity and societal roles; beauty, sensuality and death; and the social and political issues facing the current generation.