What's Going on at the GDAC?

GDAC forever. The arts community in Denton is stronger than ever and is ready for you to come and play! The Greater Denton Arts Council has been a foundation of the community for more than 45 years and serves nearly 40 area non-profit organizations.

Before we go much further, let me start by explaining two acronyms you’ll be seeing a lot:

  • GDAC (Greater Denton Arts Council) - The council itself.
  • PAAC (Patterson-Appleton Arts Center) - The building that the art galleries reside in.

Now that we have that squared away, why should you be involved? I guess a better question might be, “why wouldn’t you want to be involved?” Unless you are a profound hater of the arts (which, if you’re reading this we are betting you are not), why wouldn’t you want to check out new art galleries within walking distance of downtown?

Tracy Bays-Boothe, the Executive Director of the GDAC, has been working tirelessly to bring fresh and groundbreaking art exhibits to Denton. Bays-Boothe took over her role at the GDAC in late January of 2015. She’s been in the professional museum world of North Texas for a little more than 17 years now and is a University of North Texas alumni.

This past weekend, the GDAC opened their newest exhibit, ARTS OPEN CALL. The exhibit lines the walls in the grand hall of the building that was once Denton’s former power plant. The exhibition is also available via an online marketplace where you can go and buy the local piece of your dreams. Approximately 200 pieces of artwork were submitted for this exhibition that will run through April 16, 2016.

Photos above by Anthony Najera

The GDAC held a gallery opening party last Friday that included complimentary beer (our favorite) from the Bearded Monk (another favorite) as well as live music. Yup. Heard it here first, folks - live music, free beer, and ART - all available here, in beautiful downtown Denton. (*note, you cannot get free beer every time you visit GDAC, which is another reason why you should visit it more often).

In addition to the ARTS OPEN CALL, there are two other exhibits on display at the PAAC right now. One being the Creativity is Intelligence having Fun: Recent Works by Denton ISD Elementary Students which is beyond adorable and pretty dang amazing. The future of Denton Arts looks extremely bright, and we are thankful. The GDAC is even offering a Spring Break Camp for kids aged 6-10 from March 14-18.

The third exhibit that is up right now, and that runs through the 1st of April (this ain’t no joke), is Materials: Hard + Soft. This year marks the 29th annual Materials: Hard + Soft National Contemporary Craft Competition, which is recognized as one of the premier craft exhibitions in the country. With more than 800 entries from artists in more than 40 states, Juror Elizabeth Kozlowski, former curator of the Houston Center for Contemporary Craft, has selected over 60 works for the exhibition this year. Gallery admission is just $5 (which, let’s be real, that is not a lot of money).

Photos above by Shaina Sheaff

The selections at Materials: Hard + Soft this year are enough to bring a bright smile to any art-lovers face. I’ve outlined some of my personal favorite pieces below:

  1. Qing Liu, Ovum Series. Part of Liu’s Trees and Branches series, Ovum Series displays delicate drawings inside halved, sometimes cracked egg shells. “Though bashfully diminutive in scale,” Lui says in her artist statement, “they are a homeopathic attempt at regenerating and redefining a delicate, poetic, strong and reflection of an ancient culture and its identity.”
  2. Carrie Garrott, Hydrangea Grid. Possibly my favorite piece in the entire gallery right now (huge fan of hydrangeas). This section displays 361 different hydrangea petals, pinned in rows of 19. It is simply beautiful.
  3. Amanda Madrigal, Curtain Call. This piece incorporates mixed media with embroidery on top of the fabric and a ball chain. The outline shape is of a robust woman sitting on a tuft of some sort.
  4. Jessica Teckemeyer, Fawn or Foe II. A deer disguised in a wolf pelt, upon laying eyes on Fawn or Foe II, I was immediately instilled with a sense of courage. “This pairing relates to masking one’s character to overcome something or escape,” Teckemeyer says in her artist statement.
  5.  Audrey Bell, Mary as a child. A piece that lives on a block of wood and entertains an oil on panel, brass, a plastic dinosaur, cork, plexiglass, string, and leather, Mary as a child is a beautiful expression of mixed media.

The PAAC will host live music this coming Friday & Saturday as part of the 35 Denton music festival. We hear there will be beer - but you will have to purchase it yourself. Aside from music, you can learn how to make a Cigar Box Guitar on Saturday from 1 pm - 3 pm. Their music programming is as follows:

Friday

11:00 PM TACOCAT
10:00 PM CALLIOPE MUSICALS
9:00 PM PEARL EARL
8:00 PM COZY HAWKS
7:00 PM THE SINGLE ISSUES
6:00 PM JAS PATRICK

Saturday

12:30 AM ELECTRIC SIX
11:30 PM WELL HUNG HEART
10:30 PM MUSIC BEAR TONY BANKS (not going to want to miss him)

9:30 PM VODEO
7:30 PM RONNIE HEART
6:30 PM BREEZE L

5:30 PM WILD BILL
4:30 PM NAZEEM AND SPENCER JOLES

3:30PM KALO
2:30PM GOLDENJOY
1:30PM DOUG FUNNIE

On April 1, 2016 the GDAC will host its 2nd annual ARTS ALL NIGHT event, where -- you guessed it -- there will be events all night. Holding strong between the hours of 6 pm - 6 am, ARTS ALL NIGHT has a myriad of activities lined up. Check the blog next week for more information about this unique, all night event.

A little bit of helpful info: the gallery is closed on Sunday’s & Monday’s and is located at 400 East Hickory St. in Denton, TX 76201. The galleries are open Tuesday - Friday, 11 am - 5 pm, and Saturday from 1 pm - 5 pm.

If you haven’t been in a while, now’s the time to support the local arts. Remember, GDAC members get into all exhibitions for free! There are a lot of exciting projects coming up that we cannot wait to tell you about.