Arts & Culture in Dallas: Seeing (and Hearing) is Believing
There’s no shortage of creative beauty and venerated surroundings in Dallas.
The hotel’s location is a perfect launching point for exploring the marvelous museums and performing arts centers that make Dallas a cultural destination. Whether you wish to gaze upon paintings by the great masters, treat your ears to a little Mozart, or simply ponder the wonders of nature, you are always close to fine collections and concerts.
Dallas Arts District – and Beyond
Picture 69 acres of global culture packed into over a dozen venues, showcasing every important art form in the world. Now you can start to visualize the Dallas Arts District, a landmark to the creative spirit. It is the largest contiguous urban artistic zone in the nation.
This 19-block stretch of highly walkable streets is as much a center for shopping, education, and churches as it is a museum-lover’s dream. There’s even a guided walking tour of the area’s architecture itself (first and third Saturdays of the month; corner of Flora and Harwood). You could fill days exploring the District casually, allowing for happy accidents to lead you to new adventures. But it’s easy enough to seek out and target exactly what you might be in the mood for. And it’s not like Dallas’ culture ends at the District. Here’s a look at what’s within its borders – and beyond.
Fine Art & Sculpture
The Dallas Museum of Art, at 1717 North Harwood Street, houses a collection of works from every continent. Visitors are just as likely to behold one of Monet’s Impressionist masterpieces as they are an ancient Peruvian mask.
Right down the block at 2001 Flora Street is the Nasher Sculpture Center, which features the works of Rodin, Picasso, Matisse, and many more. Their 1.4-acre garden is a lovely place to unwind, and couples can even book wedding receptions there!
Across the street at 2010 Flora Street is the Crow Collection of Asian Art featuring pieces from China and Japan to India and Southeastern Asia.
But Dallas isn’t done wowing visitors with great art yet. A bit north on the Southern Methodist University Campus at 5900 Bishop Blvd. is the Meadows Museum, lovingly known as the “Prado on the Prairie.” The comparison to the famous Spanish museum isn’t made lightly. Its impressive collection features works by legends like El Greco and Goya as well as North Texas artists including Alexandre Hogue and Frank Reaugh, known as “the dean of Texan Painters.” Truly, Dallas serves up a feast for the eyes!
Music, Dance, and More
Starting back in the Dallas Arts District again, music lovers have many notes they can hit within this mecca of culture. Ready for the heavenly sounds of the world-class Dallas Symphony Orchestra? Then hit up the Meyerson Symphony Center at 2301 Flora Street and its European-style concert hall.
Myerson is one of 11 venues that make up the AT&T Performing Arts Center, home to the Dallas Opera, Texas Ballet Theater, Dallas Theater Center, Dallas Black Dance Theater, and the Anita N. Martinez Ballet Folklorico. AT&T also hosts a Broadway series as well as the innovative TITAS series featuring amazing alternative dance spectacles. Local community performing arts projects and a variety of free programming and family performances truly give meaning to the concept of “something for everyone.”
Science & History
Those seeking experiences outside the arts need not look too far in Dallas for the very best in natural and historical collections. Just a few blocks east of the Arts District is the Perot Museum of Nature and Science at 2201 N. Field Street. This is the place to see everything from giant dinosaur fossils to a simulated earthquake experience! If that’s just a bit too down to earth for you, there’s always the Expanding Universe Hall where visitors can take off for a cosmic multimedia journey through the solar system.
For more of a living science experiment, try netting some time at the Dallas Word Aquarium at 1801 North Griffin Street (a short walk from the Perot). Corals, fish, penguins, parrots – and of course, sharks! – make their home here.
History buffs can swing back up to the Southern Methodist University campus, 2943 SMU Boulevard, for a visit to the George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum. Special exhibits include documents handwritten by the President himself, a retrospective of the 9/11 attacks, and an exact replica of the White House’s Oval Office. Get ready to sit in the chief executive’s chair!
A more solemn presidential experience can be found in the Deep Elm neighborhood. The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza (411 Elm Street) is both a commemoration of the life of President John F. Kennedy and an in-depth look at one of our country’s darkest days, right in the place where that tragic history was made.