ONE ARTIST, TWO CITIES
In 1986 when Marla Price first arrived in Fort Worth for her new assignment as curator at the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, museum director E.A. Carmean Jr. suggested she organize a show of Texas artists, or a Texas-themed show. Politically it was a good move since Price, who was coming from Washington, D.C., was unfamiliar with the Texas art community.
There was a single name at the top of her list. She remembers telling Carmean, “There is this guy; his name is David Bates. That’s the show I want to do.”
“David Bates: Forty Paintings” opened at the Modern in 1988. The paintings were from his Grassy Lake series, works inspired by fishing trips to Arkansas — and some of his most powerful. Now they are accompanied by an equally intriguing series that documents the savage aftermath of the 2005 hurricane in New Orleans in a retrospective opening Feb. 9.
Because the amount of work is so vast, it is occupying two museums. The Modern is partnering with the Nasher Sculpture Center to present the retrospective “David Bates,” with most of the paintings displayed in Fort Worth and the sculptures in Dallas.
There are 100-plus pieces in the exhibit, including 45 paintings in Fort Worth and 45 sculptures and 20 drawings in Dallas.
Bates’ paintings and sculptures are returning home from museums and private collections from across the country. The curators also have asked for pieces that Bates has in his personal archive. These are the what he calls “snippets of things.”
He explains: “They might be loose or awkward, elegant or extra stupid. Something just happened, and I don’t know what they are. They are loved by me and now loaned by me.”
The Nasher is putting a lot of these loose ends together to show Bates’ working method.
“We are not recreating his studio, but showing the various kinds of things that surround him — quick sketches, notepads, fun little things he makes out of wire, to works of art he has around the studio,” says Nasher curator Jed Morse.
Bates notes that his personal archives have been picked clean for this event.
“It’s very exciting,” he says. “There is 35 years of work to choose from. Then they want to haul the studio in there, just like that. Wow.”
For Fort Worth patrons of the arts, this is a highly anticipated exhibition. Bates, who chose to stay in Texas rather than decamp to New York, says he preferred to remain close to his roots and loved ones. Humble and approachable, he seems almost giddy when discussing this gathering of his works.
“Nobody appreciates a show like this as much as the artist,” he explains. “It will be like a family reunion. I’ll see paintings I haven’t seen in 35 years and sculpture I haven’t seen in 20.”
When Bates began creating sculptures, they looked surprisingly like his paintings. His flat, black-outlined figures were quite two-dimensional and didn’t seem to lend themselves to morphing into the round. Once he started banging cardboard and lumber together and painting the surfaces of the sculptures, however, the results were immediately recognizable as his. Lately, his cast work has taken on a more sophisticated surface, but the shapes and assemblies remain unmistakably the work of Bates.
“That’s the thing I have been impressed with about David,” says Price. “He could have continued to paint those Grassy Lake paintings for the rest of his life, but he is always challenging himself. I think one of the things people will take away from the show is the interaction between the paintings and sculptures. Sometimes the paintings will inspire a sculpture; sometimes a sculpture might bring about changes in his painting.”
SAMURAI AT THE KIMBELL
For the first special exhibition in the new Piano Pavilion, the Kimbell Art Museum is hosting “Samurai: Armor From the Ann and Gabriel Barbier-Mueller Collection.” This look at the elaborate Japanese armor of the samurais from the 17th to 19th centuries includes exquisitely designed helmets and masks, and full body armor for the warriors and their horses. Craftsmen collaborated on the pieces. A lead armorer would direct a team of blacksmiths, leather workers, braid makers, dyers, painters and gold and silver craftsman for these elaborate suits, which were as much about protection as they were status, ceremony and prestige. Among the 140 pieces on exhibit are 18 full suits of armor, three mounted warriors and many highly decorated helmets and masks, as well as weapons. Admission to the exhibit is free opening day, Feb. 16; after that, prices will range from $10 to $14, with half-price admission Tuesdays and after 5 p.m. Fridays. 3333 Camp Bowie Blvd., Fort Worth, 817-332-8451, www.kimbellart.org. The exhibition will run through Aug. 31.
Bookstore shelves are stocked with tributes to fashion genius Alexander McQueen, but this new coffee-table tome stands apart thanks to its unprecedented behind-the-scenes access. Alexander McQueen: Working Process by Susannah Frankel (Damiani, $60) showcases the photography of Nick Waplington, who was commissioned by McQueen himself in 2008 to document the creation of the Fall/Winter 2009 “Horn of Plenty” collection. Waplington captures it all, from design to construction to the runway show, an epic event with a set made of broken mirrors and a trash heap composed of fashion show sets from previous seasons. But McQueen was not only a subject; he was also a collaborator: He edited Waplington’s photos and arranged and storyboarded them for publication. But it was not to be. McQueen committed suicide in February 2010, and the book was put on hold until its publication late last year. It’s all here, unchanged from the way McQueen intended, and sure to be a classic. Available at all major bookstores.
YOU’LL HEART THIS JEWELRY
If you’re the type of person who likes things literal — or you’re actually a cardiologist! — these jewelry pieces by Brooklyn-based Digby & Iona will get your blood flowing. The Heart Signet Ring ($170) in oxidized silver showcases the all-important pump, encircled by the Italian phrase E Cosi Desio Me Mena, which translates to “And So Desire Carries Me Along.” It can be personalized with an initial on each side of the ring, also works as a wax seal for your love notes and comes with a stick of red sealing wax. Or opt for these clever sterling-silver Anatomical Heart cuff links ($120), perfect for the man who already wears his heart on his sleeve. www.oldhollywoodmoxie.com.
THE GOWN LOWDOWN
Fort Worth arts organizations throw some of the best parties of the year, in part, because their galas include displays and performances by the top-notch talent they serve to promote. Several notable ones come up this spring — two on the same night next month (what’s an arts patron to do?). Tickets and tables will go quickly, so get them on your calendar and start gown shopping.
The Kimbell Art Museum’s Red Party, the much-anticipated “young professionals’” feting of the new Renzo Piano Pavilion, became a victim of the early December ice storm. It is rescheduled for 8 p.m.-midnight March 1 at the Piano Pavilion. The evening will feature cocktails and heavy hors d’oeuvres, as well as architecture tours and music by the Buster Brown Band. Tickets are $150, and dress code, of course, is “fashionably red.” For more information and tickets, call 817-288-3224 or visit www.kimbellart.org/shop/item/red-party-ticket.
is March 1 and will coincide with the company’s performances of Serenade, L & Gloria at Bass Hall. The theme is “all things British” in honor of artistic director Ben Stevenson’s 60 years, or diamond jubilee, in the world of ballet. The evening includes cocktails and a formal dinner at McDavid Studio, followed by the ballet performance at Bass Hall and post-performance drinks and dancing at the “Swan Tavern Pub” in McDavid Studio. Tickets are $500 for the evening or $175 for the performance and after-party; tables for 10 are $5,000. 817-763-0207, ext. 110; www.texasballettheater.org.
Mark your spring calendar for the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra’s Gala concert featuring renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma on April 3 ( www.fwsymphony.org/); and the Cliburn Foundation’s “Classically Cliburn” Gala on May 2 ( www.cliburn.org/).
BEATLEMANIA IN A BOX
On Feb. 9, 1964, John, Paul, George and Ringo stepped onto The Ed Sullivan Show stage and into the television screens of 73 million U.S. fans. The Fab Four’s American debut remains one of the most-viewed events of all time; the world never again has experienced anything quite like “Beatlemania.” Among the scores of 50th anniversary memorabilia to hit collectors’ shelves this year is a dreamy new 13-CD box set, The U.S. Albums, reissues of albums originally released between 1964 and 1970 in the United States. The discs, recorded in mono and stereo, come in a boxed set with “faithfully replicated” original LP artwork and a 64-page booklet that includes photos and promotional art from the time. $165, The Beatles Official Store, http://thebeatles.shop.bravadousa.com.
THE SOUND OF STYLE
When fashion photography icon (and Marc Jacobs fave) Juergen Teller creates an ad campaign for something, it’s hard not to want it. But the Jambox by Jawbone ($149.99) happens to be both photogenic and hands-down awesome. Actually, more like hands-free — and wire-free and hassle-free, too. It’s a super-small, sleek wireless speaker that connects with any Bluetooth device like a mobile phone, computer or tablet to deliver crystal-clear, powerful sound for up to 10 hours. This isn’t some A/V club nerd gadget; you can customize the colors of the faceted grill speaker and end caps for ultimate chicness. And, like most things couture, it’s also available in extra-extra small: The recently released Mini Jambox ($179.99) is an inch-thick sliver of boom — the perfect insert for a Balenciaga Baby Bag, no? Find them at www.jawbone.com.
CELEBRATING VAN CLIBURN
This month marks one year since the death of beloved pianist Van Cliburn. The Fort Worth-based foundation that bears his name will remember his life and his contributions to music with the Van Cliburn Memorial Concert 5-8:30 p.m. Feb. 27 (the date on which he died last year) in the new Sundance Square Plaza in downtown Fort Worth. The outdoor concert will feature performances by favorite Cliburn competition prize-winners, including gold medalists José Feghali (1985), Simone Pedroni (1993) and Alex Kobrin (2005); silver medalists Antonio Pompa-Baldi (2001), Maxim Philippov (2001) and Yakov Kasman (1997); and award winners Alexey Koltakov (2001) and Steven Lin (2013). The event is free and open to the public, and will be streamed live at www.cliburn.org and www.star-telegram.com.
LOVE FROM THE OVEN
Valentine’s cupcakes? So last year. “Cakelets?” Now there’s a treat we’d like to send in a child’s lunchbox, give to co-workers or leave by the coffee pot for a sweetie the morning of Feb. 14. Williams-Sonoma’s new Elegant Heart Cakelet Pan ($36) features six heart-shaped wells with dainty scalloped edges; each one is sized right for a dessert for two, the company says. The cast-aluminum Nordic Ware pan is designed to heat quickly and evenly, and a nonstick finish helps ensure the hearts aren’t broken when they pop out of the pan. Available for a limited time locally at Williams-Sonoma’s Southlake store, 172 State St., 817-416-5932; www.williams-sonoma.com/.
A FRESH TAKE
Back in the day, J. Saunders Boutique in Fort Worth was the haute place to find fabulous frocks from French labels like Cacharel and also exclusive collections from celebrity designers like Priscilla Presley, who tried her hand at designing after her divorce from Elvis. If you have never heard of this 43-year-old west-side boutique, get ready to discover a gem. Co-owner Melody Saunders is all set to shake up the fashion scene again — she has moved into a fresh new location, has welcomed a stylish new manager named Mina Vang and is on her way to recapturing that sartorial edge that set her shop apart so many years ago. You’ll find the same one-of-a-kind jewelry pieces (with even more on the way), plus a wide range of special occasion designers like Dalia MacPhee, with several exclusive lines and fashion collaborations coming soon. 5114 Camp Bowie Blvd., 817-732-8155.
Put your passport down — British brand JoJo Maman Bébé is now available in Fort Worth. Zoe + Jack Children’s Boutique will feature the spring collection for boys and girls from the popular brand — the duchess of Cambridge is a fan! — that takes its design cues from the same French nautical influences that inspired Coco Chanel. Best of all, the line is comfortable and affordable — pieces range from $30 to $60. 5137 Birchman Ave., Fort Worth, 817-989-2200. www.zoeandjack.com.
Target’s designer collaborations always are covetable, and the Peter Pilotto collection launching Feb. 9 is no exception. It’s sure to be snapped up by style-savvy bargainistas (Fashion & Beauty editor Jenny B. Davis is vowing to be first in line). The London-based brand is designed by Pilotto and Christopher De Vos and is best known for its outrageous, colorful digital prints, and it’s a favorite of chic celebs like Kate Bosworth, Kerry Washington, Sienna Miller and Emma Watson. The assortment created for Target includes apparel, swimwear and accessories and is priced from $16.99 to $79.99. For more information on the launch at local Targets, visit www.abullseyeview.com/.
BIG NAME, SMALL STYLES
Spring is abloom with special occasions where kids have to look their best, and Oscar de la Renta has come to the rescue with his latest collection of children’s wear. Whether it’s a wedding, a brunch, a fancy party or Easter egg hunt, these adorable togs for boys and girls are colorful, comfortable and always appropriate. Find the entire collection online at www.oscardelarenta.com.
The annual Design Inspirations Luncheon, benefiting Gill Children’s Services and Communities in Schools of Greater Tarrant County, will feature a familiar face as its keynote speaker. Jan Showers, a TCU alumna, is as close as a designer can get to being royalty; her design firm and antiques business are considered among the most distinguished in the country. She is the author of Glamorous Rooms, a compilation of her work from the past 25 years, and Glamorous Retreats, released last fall. She will speak at the luncheon, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. March 6 at Ridglea Country Club; tickets are $125 (tables: $1,000-$5,000). A preview party will take place 7-9 p.m. March 5 at Ridglea Country Club and will include dinner and cocktails; tickets are $75 or $350. Buy tickets at www.design
inspirationsfw.com or at Domain XCIV, 3100 W. Seventh St., Fort Worth, or dh Collection, 3320 W. Seventh St., Fort Worth.
Residing in that rare place where exquisite and enduring embrace, The Steel Collection from J. Robert Scott comes to the tactile rescue of the jet-setting crowd with neutral-yet-versatile wool and silk fabrics that work in both masculine and feminine settings. The company’s textile division, known for its luxurious handwoven silks, wools, mohair and velvets, has applied its soft hand to two gray-toned shades in a wool sheer and four weights of silk. It has produced practical-yet-seemingly-delicate fabric options destined to mute the unapproachable feel of large-scale concrete-and-steel contemporary environs or send the luxury meter through the roof when affixed to the custom furnishings in the Learjet or private yacht. (Also of note, The Metallic Collection, with distinctive silk burlap, silk burlap shimmer and Araby Metallic fabrics in colorways ranging from bronze and golden to anthracite and frost.) Available locally to the trade at the Allan Knight and Associates showroom in the Dallas Market Center. 214-741-2227. www.allan-knight.com.
Adooring Designs has moved its Fort Worth showroom to a larger space in Old Town Keller. Located at 108 E. Hill St., the store is open 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesday-Friday. A grand-opening event is set for mid-February. 817-745-0522, www.adooringdesigns.com.
, the designer behind the Edo Popken of Switzerland label, will visit his namesake Dallas boutique this month to fit clients in his luxe made-to-measure suits, custom golfwear and more. On Feb. 14, the boutique will be hosting a “Love Thy Man” party — drop in between 11 a.m. and 7:30 p.m. to enjoy whiskey tastings, a shoe shine, a fine jewelry trunk show and more. Celebrate all things Swiss on Feb. 19 during an Olympics-watching party. 1523 Dragon St., Dallas. For event details or to make a personal appointment with Popken, call 214-749-0200. www.edopopken.com.
Byrd & Bleecker has moved to a new location with a new, appointment-only approach that will ensure more customized service for its gorgeous invitations, giftables and more. Check the website or link up on social media to learn more about a Valentine’s Day calligraphy class, stationery specials and more. 4455 Camp Bowie Blvd., Suite 220, 817-989-1500. www.byrdshop.com.