Dallas, the Lone Art Star

Meadows Dean Jose Bowen talks about places he finds special in Dallas.


For years, Dallas has been living down its big-hair-and-big-hats reputation. But with new spikes on the skyline, a transformed cultural landscape and a decidedly cosmopolitan makeover, visitors will be hard-pressed to find the "Dallas" of the '80s in its newest, grown-up incarnation. . .

The Connoisseur:

Dean of the Meadows School of the Arts and professor of music at Southern Methodist University

Outdoor Art: Valley House Gallery & Sculpture Garden. Situated on 4.5 wooded acres in North Dallas, this oasis is the oldest gallery in Dallas. It specializes in Texas artists, and features a wonderfully walkable sculpture garden. 6616 Spring Valley Rd., valleyhouse.com

Un-Texan Cuisine: Lalibela. Although this tiny Ethiopian restaurant is in a strip mall, if you order the veggie or meat combo, you'll forget the surroundings. Don't use a fork; use your injera bread. 9191 Forest Lane, lalibeladallas.com

Little Things: Nuvo. This Oak Lawn-area emporium for gifts, unique books, jewelry and cards features plenty of Dallas artists. 3900 Cedar Springs Rd., nuvodallas.com

Pop Art: The Soda Gallery. Located in the great Bishop Arts District, here you can sample 200 types of soda, including over 30 types of root beer. Pop open a bottle, challenge someone to Chinese checkers and sample some vintage-style candy. 408 N. Bishop Ave. #101, thesodagallery.com

Night Spot: Bar Celine. Owner Donald Chick transformed this East Dallas garage into a moody, sexy bar and nightclub and named it after his wife. The vintage furniture and Wednesday night jazz make it a scene. The bar is behind its sister restaurant, Park. 1921 Henderson Ave., barceline.com

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