Artist and Alum Kaleta Doolin Opens New Exhibition, Hosts Artist Screening

Meadows alum and artist Kaleta Doolin opens a new solo exhibition, Crazier than Crazy Quilts, and hosts an on-campus Q&A and screening of her short films.

Thumb wrestling still from short film Bird Brains
A thumb-wrestling still from Kaleta Doolin's recent short comedic art film Bird Brains.

Meadows alum and artist Kaleta Doolin (B.F.A. ’83, M.F.A. ’87) celebrates the legacies of historical women artists in her newly opened solo exhibition, Crazier than Crazy Quilts, at the Erin Cluley Gallery and Cluley Projects.


The exhibition, which opened on April 1 and will run through May 6, features more than three decades of Doolin’s work and spans a variety of mediums, including sculpture, textiles, book arts, installation and conceptual art. The common thread throughout her work, regardless of medium, is the significance of feminism in our society and her exhibitions actively combat the idea of art historically being a “boys’ club.”


“When I turned 10 years old, I expected to have the same privilege as my brother,” said Doolin. “But my parents said, ‘No. You’re a girl.’”


It was this situation that set Doolin on the path to becoming an important orator in 20th and 21st century feminism. Her art, which echoes the work of other feminist artists like Betye Saar, Méret Oppenheim, and Louise Bourgeois, encourages future generations to eschew the oppressive constraints of domesticity that was, and still is, exercised on women.


Meadows alum and artist Kaleta Doolin


In conjunction with the opening of her exhibitions, Doolin will also be hosting a Visiting Artist Screening at SMU Meadows’ Owen Arts Center on Tuesday, April 4. The screening will feature several of her short films, followed by a Q&A with the artist herself. Among the short films being shown is Bird Brains, Doolin’s most recent short film, which was filmed in the Galapagos Islands and intercuts the mating ritual of Albatross with male vs female thumb wrestling. Other films being shown include Alexander the Infant, Alexander Wiggletooth, Backyard Ballet, Coiffure Voyeur and Listening Africa.


You can visit Crazier than Crazy Quilts at the Erin Cluley Gallery, located at 150 Manufacturing Street Suite 210 in the Design District, and Cluley Projects, located at 2123 Sylvan Avenue in West Dallas, from now until May 6.