Flower of the Prairie: George Grosz in Dallas Features Works from Grosz’s 1952 Exhibition, Historic Photographs of Dallas, and Other Works from the Artist’s Career
The Dallas Museum of Art presents Flower of the Prairie: George Grosz in Dallas on the 60th anniversary of the first presentation of the Impressions of Dallas series at the Dallas Museum of Fine Arts in October 1952. The exhibition, organized by the DMA and on view May 20 through August 19, 2012, features twenty works from the series accompanied by a rich selection of historic photographs of Dallas, documenting the city as Grosz discovered it in 1952. The exhibition also examines the context for the Impressions of Dallas series with twelve of Grosz’s works made earlier in his career, including graphic work made in Berlin in the 1920s and early 1930s, and paintings and watercolors made in New York during the 1930s and 1940s. The exhibition is accompanied by the Dallas Museum of Art's first e-catalogue, an electronic publication describing the history of Grosz’s Dallas paintings.
“We are pleased to present the work of the acclaimed German artist George Grosz on the 60th anniversary of his Impressions of Dallas series,” said Maxwell L. Anderson, The Eugene McDermott Director of the Dallas Museum of Art. “It is a wonderful way to celebrate both the history of the Dallas Museum of Art and the rich history of Dallas during a period in which the city experienced rapid growth.”
In 1952 George Grosz, the expatriate German dadaist and satirist, was invited to Dallas by Leon Harris, Jr., the young vice president of the A. Harris & Company department store. Harris had commissioned Grosz to create a series of paintings illustrating the landscape, economy, and society of Dallas for the store’s 65th anniversary celebrations. Grosz’s series, called Impressions of Dallas, was exhibited at the Dallas Museum of Fine Arts in Fair Park in 1952, and then in New York in 1954, but the works have since remained almost forgotten.
“When Leon Harris, Jr. commissioned George Grosz to produce images of Dallas, Grosz was one of the most celebrated artists working in America, but he wasn’t widely collected. His work was somewhat out of step with the developments of postwar American art,” said Heather MacDonald, The Lillian and James H. Clark Associate Curator of European Art at the DMA. “His works from the Impressions of Dallas series offer not only a historical review of Dallas but also a look at one of the last active periods of his career.”
The exhibition e-catalogue, describing the history of Grosz’s Dallas paintings, features an essay by exhibition curator Heather MacDonald and additional contributions by Andrew Sears, McDermott Curatorial Intern of European and American Art at the Dallas Museum of Art. The electronic publication describes Grosz’s career in the postwar years, relates the history of the Impressions of Dallas commission, and offers a rich portrait of Dallas in the early 1950s. The catalogue reproduces the Impressions of Dallas series in its entirety for the first time and also illustrates many other paintings, watercolors, drawings, and prints by Grosz, as well as many historic photographs of Dallas.
Flower of the Prairie: George Grosz in Dallas is organized by the Dallas Museum of Art and curated by Heather MacDonald, The Lillian and James H. Clark Associate Curator of European Art. The exhibition is presented by Macy’s Foundation. Air transportation is provided by American Airlines.
About the Dallas Museum of Art
Established in 1903, the Dallas Museum of Art (DMA) ranks among the leading art institutions in the country and is distinguished by its innovative exhibitions and groundbreaking educational programs. At the heart of the Museum and its programs is its global collection, which encompasses more than 25,000 works and spans 5,000 years of history, representing a full range of world cultures. Located in the vibrant Arts District of downtown Dallas, the Museum welcomes more than half a million visitors annually and acts as a catalyst for community creativity, engaging people of all ages and backgrounds with a diverse spectrum of programming, from exhibitions and lectures to concerts, literary events, and dramatic and dance presentations.
The Dallas Museum of Art is supported in part by the generosity of Museum members and donors and by the citizens of Dallas through the City of Dallas/Office of Cultural Affairs and the Texas Commission on the Arts.