Field Trip: The Haute 5 Cultural Institutions in Dallas

Hey Joe, whadda’ya know?

In Dallas, it’s not only important to look stunning, but to be cunning. Already a cultural hub, the new Arts District under construction here in Uptown is rapidly making our city a heavy hitter in the world of wine swirling and contemplative silences. So to encourage the oozing of intelligence, here’s a list of inspirational and educational arenas that are making Dallas citizens that much more interesting.

Nasher Sculpture Center

It’s easy to get lost in this center, with over 10,000 square-feet of indoor gallery space situated on one and a half-acres of garden space for sculptures. The assortment of flora and fountains makes the viewing of the center’s outdoor exhibits a wonderful Spring experience. The Nashers began collecting Latin American sculptures over 50 years ago, and today their spread includes archaeological finds as well as modern pieces, not to mention their special exhibits and installments by artists like the Spanish sculptor Jamue Plensa, currently on display through May 2nd.

The Nasher Sculpture Center is located at 2001 Flora Street in Dallas, 214-242-5100

Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden

It’s still cool enough to enjoy the Arboretum, Dallas’ spot to see all things green…and red, pink, yellow. Well, you get the idea. Stroll through the paved paths between canopies of lush elms, fields of blooming tulips and gazebos encircled in botanical beauty. Stumble across a hidden fountain surrounded by giant frog statues, and enjoy a lemonade and a seriously delicious garden salad at the cafe. And don’t forget, Mom’s day is coming up, so treat her to a great brunch right on the outdoor patio. It’s good to be green.

The Dallas Arboretum is located at 8525 Garland Road in Dallas, 214-515-6500

Winspear Opera House

Now part of the AT&T Performing Arts Center, the Winspear is a gorgeous architectural creation mixing asthetics with logic. The center, which plays host not only to opera performances but also ballet and Broadway shows, was formed in the classic “horseshoe” design with a 21st century twist: a wrap-around see-through panel of red glass tiles that give audiences a dual view of the interior of the center along with the surrounding Performance Park. A vast section of the panels are also designed to open up, connecting the center with the park even further. Coming up at the Winspear: Madame Butterfly.

The Winspear is located at 2403 Flora Street in Dallas, 214-443-1000

Angelika Film Center and Cafe

Barring the coolness of the Angelika’s location (cheek to jowl with the shops and restaurants of Mockingbird Station), the shows featured at the theater and cafe are eclectic and independent. A transplant from NYC’s Soho District from the ‘80s, the Angelika is definitely the place to shun the over-buttered popcorn and blockbuster blow-outs, and go for the glass of Chianti and the subtitled French film. On screen now at the Angelika: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and When You’re Strange: The Doors

The Angelika Film Center and Cafe is located at 5321 Mockingbird Lane in Dallas, 214-821-4700

The Museum of Geometric and MADI Art

The fist museum of its kind in Dallas came out of the strangest of places: a law firm complex. The owners of Kilgore & Kilgore decided to give back to the community when they changed locations about seven years ago, and dedicated the space to the MADI movement, inspired by Carmelo Arden Quin who founded MADI in Buenos Aires in 1946. Designed by Volf Roitman, the building reflects the pieces that made the artform popular: big, geometric shapes and bold colors, sparking interest and imagination before you even enter the parking lot. Through June 6th, check out Pamela Nelson’s SHINE ON exhibit.

The Museum of Geometric and MADI Art is located at 3109 Carlisle Street in Dallas, 214-855-7802