The Dallas Contemporary is the latest museum to count on fashion exhibitions to try to bolster attendance.
Three years in the making, the Dallas Contemporary’s Jeremy Scott retrospective is attracting an international and diverse crowd. It is part of a yearlong plan to play up fashion in its many forms. Visitors are welcome to take photographs and shoot video taking in the non-collecting institution, which is always free. Executive director Peter Doroshenko said, “Dallas Contemporary has continually made a commitment to including fashion as an art to be appreciated — this year’s program reflects that but continues to highlight painters and sculptors and performance artists as well.”
Located in a renovated warehouse in Dallas’ Design District, “Viva Avant Garde: A Jeremy Scott Retrospective” will be on view through March 17. It features early designs from the designer’s namesake label, which were unveiled in Paris in 1997. To highlight how prolific the Pratt graduate has been in his career, there is a wide range of sportswear, handbags, footwear and keepsakes from his notable runway shows. Museum patrons will also get a glimpse of Scott’s pop-culture iconography, like the golden arches of McDonald’s, cartoon characters, Cadillac tail fins and graffiti. From the designer’s viewpoint “visuals are more instant than words.”
During a walk-through with museum officials, Scott “reminisced about each piece and referenced conspiracy theories, homages to Franco Moschino and working with Gigi Hadid and Rihanna,” according to a museum spokeswoman. He also spoke of symbols of the jukebox and symbols other eras, in addition to sexual fantasy, the redaction of beauty, pop culture imagery and garments painted by the artist Rosson Crow that were inspired by Claes Oldenburg, the official added.
This spring, fashion photographer and filmmaker Yelena Yemchuk will have her own show starting April 5 running through Dec. 27. She is still shooting for Vogue and Elle magazines. Her work blends the fashion industry with a studio art practice that zeroes in on identity issues. Her large-scale photography will be showcased in the museum’s narrow gallery space. A new short film that Yemchuk has whipped up will premiere at the museum’s annual gala in April. The show is slated to move on to New York and Odessa.
Another fashion photographer, Mario Sorrenti, will have a solo show at the Dallas Contemporary from April 12 through Aug. 25. His early black-and-white photographs of Kate Moss will be the centerpiece of his “Kate” show, which includes some images that led to their Calvin Klein Obsession campaign in the Nineties. Fifty-eight photographs and a never-seen-before video of the model will be on view. The duo are expected to make an appearance at the Dallas Contemporary’s gala.
There are also plans to take “Kate” on-the-road with stops in Latin America and Asia in the works.
Concurrently with the timing of the Sorrenti show, Dallas Contemporary will show “The Self Service Stories: Twenty-five Years of Fashion, People and Ideas Reconsidered.” Self Service will mark its 25th anniversary with an exhibition that looks back at the lifestyle magazine’s fashion, photography, contemporary art, music and graphic design. Self Service was among the first publications to shift away from conventional fashion media to incorporate all-in-one-place genres like “TheNow” and “Daily Obsessions.”
April will also see the opening of a show dedicated to the art of Francesco Clemente — the largest series of wall works ever displayed in one location. Clemente, a familiar face with the fashion crowd, will have six new large-scale sculptures that he developed in India on view. There will also be images based on previous studio iconography that was inspired by the nearby Trinity River.