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Beat The Texas Heat: Exploring Culture & Art At The African American Museum of Dallas

The African American Museum of Dallas was founded in 1974.  It’s mission has been to present and preserve artistic, cultural and historic materials from the African American culture.   By design the museum is incredible in that its lofty open spaces create a free flowing atmosphere welcoming to all.

I was very excited to visit the museum with its upcoming art show, hoping to catch a special glimpse of some of the works as well as the standing exhibits in the space.    I was not disappointed as I was moved by many of the pieces on display and greatly enjoyed the dynamic images featured in many of the halls.

The facility itself is 38,000 square feet and includes a reading and research room, several gallery spaces, a museum area, theater and classrooms.   Providing educational programs is a major focus on the museum with various programs and workshops offered throughout the year.  

While moving throughout the museum I was excited to see the differing themes throughout each of the 4 upstairs corridors, each telling a unique story of culture and history alongside various artist.    It by far contained some of my favorite pieces I have seen recently in galleries, as each was so unique.

“Facing The Rising Sun” focused more locally as it depicted the Freedman’s town, now known as North Dallas.  Interactive kiosks as well as found or donated objects depict the feelings of the era first hand while those at the museum travel through time through the unique experience.  

This by far was one of the most moving of the displays as it takes into account first hand the neighborhoods that we so freely roam and tell their past in such vivid color.   I found this to be the most humbling of all.

“Randall Henry:  Power of Abstract”  was a bold statement featuring the native of Baton Rouge.   His art commands your attention as you walk by and pulls you in to the message behind each.   I was enamored by the use of mixed media on these and spent much time looking on at each of the bold colors presented on both canvas and sculpture.

“30 Years of Social Commentary” possessed one of my favorite paintings of the day!   The message simple “Violence perpetrated against self can only lead to self annihilation.”   We could all learn from this if we took time to think rather than act.   This gallery is one which compels you to think outside of your own box and more about the world and is in my opinion a must see for every person, every race and culture and every creed. 

You might be surprise what you find when you explore beyond your typical expectations and find something new.   This Museum by far was an awakening type of experience which I encourage all to visit.    Beautifully constructed with a staff that is extremely friendly and helpful, this location will leave you feeling more thoughtful than when you arrived.

Address: 3536 Grand Ave – Dallas, TX

Hours:  11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday

Admission:  FREE

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