Don’t let the sweltering temperatures fool you, Fort Worth’s Fall Gallery Night is just around the corner.
The annual event and its spring counterpart encourage longtime art lovers and newcomers alike to explore art spaces across the city. This year, more than 40 places across Fort Worth, and two in Arlington, will host art-centric open houses on Sept. 9.
Gallerists know that walking into a quiet, white-walled space on your own can be intimidating for someone who is just browsing. These events give the arts community an opportunity to relieve some of that pressure on guests with a day of high volume visits and the occasional live DJ and snacking on hors d’oeuvres.
“You really get to understand the lay of the community and the culture of the city you live in,” said Jay Wilkinson, a local artist and gallery manager at Fort Works Art.
“It’s a really fun, celebratory event, so it’s definitely a lot more approachable than walking into certain gallery spaces normally, especially ones that are by appointment only. … Everybody’s door is wide open.”
If you go
What: Fort Worth Art Dealers Association’s annual Fall Gallery Night
Time: Hours vary, but many galleries will be open from noon-9 p.m.
Date: Sept. 9
Where: There are more than 40 museums, galleries, businesses and other places participating this year. The majority are in Fort Worth, but Arlington has a couple as well. Find the complete list here.
The free event doesn’t come with the pressure to make a big purchase, and many places try to highlight pieces at a variety of price points, he said.
“It’s a great entry point for anyone who is nervous about participating in the art world,” Wilkinson said. “Buying art is voting with your money. It’s putting money into your own community … In a space of mass market products, it’s a really great opportunity for you to buy something that’s unique.”
The Fort Worth Report rounded up five places that will be celebrating on gallery night:
3501 Camp Bowie Blvd., Fort Worth
Gallery Night hours: 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Louise Nevelson is a hard artist to define, but curator Shirley Reece-Hughes hopes that a new exhibition at the Amon Carter Museum of American Art will give viewers the opportunity to dig into the prolific artist’s career.
The show features several of the monochromatic, wooden sculptures that Nevelson is known for but also highlights her foray into other forms like figurative drawings, lithographic prints and sculptures made from acrylic or plaster.
“What she was doing was really radical at that moment,” Reece-Hughes said. “It can’t be underestimated, the fact that she was a woman artist at that time when few, if any, were receiving recognition and support from colleagues — let alone sculpture colleagues, (which) was considered the domain of men at that time.”
The artist’s wall-mounted works feature everyday objects that she scavenged from around the city, such as bowling pins, bed posts and pieces of chairs that she repurposed and reimagined.
“She’s taking those real-world experiences,” Reece-Huges said, “but then transcending it for the viewer.”
Arts Fort Worth
1300 Gendy St. Fort Worth
Gallery Night hours: 9 a.m. – 9 p.m.
Arts Fort Worth will have several shows running concurrently on Fall Gallery Night, including one that highlights the work of incarcerated artists at the Federal Medical Center in Fort Worth.
“Looking Within II” is a reprise of a similar exhibition from last year and will be held on the cusp of Warden Freddy Garrido’s retirement, who championed the program.
The level of interest and participation with the arts program at Carswell grew in its second year, Robert Long, exhibitions manager for Arts Fort Worth, said.
“People are shifting to a more personal narrative,” he said. “The deeper engagement and creative thinking of what goes into great art … is super exciting to see.”
Works drawn with paper, colored pencils and markers will be on display along with 3-D pieces like leather wallets and instruments made of cardboard.
Bale Creek Allen Gallery
120 St. Louis Ave., Suite 149, Fort Worth
Gallery Night hours: Noon-9 p.m.
In the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, multimedia artist Sandy Skoglund embarked on a mission to organize her studio and was able to revisit her past work in the process.
“I was looking through these rejected transparencies, and I was really shocked at how much they spoke to me,” she said. “And they spoke to me in a different way from the original negatives that I had chosen back during the original shoot.”
Throughout September and October visitors will have the chance to see an exhibition of those works titled “The Outtakes.”
Rather than capturing scenes around her, Skoglund uses her camera to create worlds of her own. Her photos invite viewers into boldly-colored, dreamlike scenarios filled with ceramic animals — crafted by the artist herself — and photographed with a few people in the frame.
“My philosophy,” she said, “is that we create reality.”
Fort Works Art
2100 Montgomery St., Fort Worth
Gallery Night hours: Noon-9 p.m.
Heavenly skyscapes from Rachel English will fill the first floor of Fort Works Arts’ gallery in a solo show titled “Atmospheric Perspective.”
Upstairs, Jay Wilkinson will bring the spirit of his former gallery “Dang Good Candy” back to life in a group exhibition highlighting seven local and emerging artists: Aubree Dale, Fernando Rojas, Kyle Hanson, Harrison Boyland, Michelle Cortez Gonzales, Walt Burns and Andrew Hammond Kendall.
Wilkinson plans to make a “Dang Good Group Show” an annual tradition at the gallery as a way to reconnect with the community after COVID-19 put some of that work on hold.
1013 W. Magnolia Ave., Fort Worth
Gallery Night Hours: 10 a.m. – 9 p.m.
The culmination of Chad Holliday’s residency at SiNaCa will coincide with Fall Gallery Night. The glass artist typically casts his works, which means he makes a precise model, uses it to create a mold and then pours the glass inside. But, recently he has been exploring a different approach called ladling, where a big scoop of molten glass is ladled, poured and then picked up and manipulated into a shape.
“This is kind of an unusual process and is really interesting,” said Jean Fernandes, instructor and visiting artist coordinator at the studio. “Not a lot of people work in this way … It will be pretty cool to watch.”
The studio will host a live demonstration of this process from approximately 6-9 p.m.
Editor’s note: This post was updated to clarify the location of the incarcerated artists featured in an exhibition at Arts Fort Worth.
Marcheta Fornoff covers the arts for the Fort Worth Report. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter. At the Fort Worth Report, news decisions are made independently of our board members and financial supporters. Read more about our editorial independence policy here.