For two years there have been rumors that the Nasher Sculpture Center plans to celebrate its 10th anniversary with a city-wide public art exhibition. So how will the Nasher tackle public art in car-driven Dallas?

Will the Nasher Sculpture Center Announce Citywide Public Art Program This Afternoon?

For a few years there have been rumors that the Nasher Sculpture Center has been planning to celebrate its 10th anniversary with a massive public art exhibition — a city takeover — that uses sites scattered around Dallas for unique installations. The idea for the project is intriguing for a number of reasons, not least of which is the opportunity to rethink public art in Dallas. How does one approach the issue of public art in a city that doesn’t boast a ton of public spaces or public gathering spots?

Today the media has been invited to a press conference at the Nasher featuring a special appearance by Mayor Mike Rawlings and promising an announcement regarding the museum’s tenth anniversary. I asked a Nasher spokesperson if the press conference was called to launch the public art initiative, and she neither confirmed nor denied the rumor. So I have a hunch that is what today’s event is about.

If so, I’m looking forward to finding out how the Nasher addresses a number of questions surrounding the project: Who will be the artists tapped by the Nasher for the project? What city sites will be utilized? Will the exhibition take a “Northpark approach” to art in the public sphere, namely, placing refined art works in public settings, or will it include new commissions or offer a broad survey of approaches to public art?

Stay tuned for answers. After all, I could be completely wrong about this. In the meantime here are some notable examples of one approach to public work in a car-driven city: billboards, starting at the top of the page with the late-Felix Gonzalez-Torres. “Untitled.” 1991 (via).

Jenny Holzer, ‘Private Property Created Crime’, 1985. Times Square, New York
Bethan Huws
Barbara Kruger, ‘Your Body is a Battleground,’ billboard project for Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus, OH, 1990
Work by Banksy on a Los Angeles billboard
Victor Burgin, Possession, 1976
Jeff Koons: ‘Made in Heaven’, 1989
Kay Rosen
Alfredo Jaar, A Logo For America, 1987
Cindy Sherman, Women of the City, 2008
Guerrilla Girls
Mike Mills, “The Cops Are Inside Us”
Irene Anton – Timecode
Joseph Kosuth, Class 4. Matter 1. Matter in general, 1969