Located in the vibrant Arts District of downtown Dallas, Texas, the Dallas Museum of Art (DMA), founded in 1903, ranks among the leading art institutions in the country and is distinguished by its innovative exhibitions, groundbreaking educational programs, and global collection. In 1984 the DMA moved to its current location, the 370,000-square-foot Edward Larrabee Barnes–designed building, as the first arts organization in the Dallas Arts District. The Museum’s global collection contains over 22,000 works of art spanning 5,000 years of human creativity. The growing collection includes one of the most important museum holdings of modern and contemporary art in the U.S., as well as strong holdings of the arts of the ancient Americas, Africa, and South Asia, and in European and American painting, sculpture and decorative arts.
The DMA has a diverse array of programming, including a monthly Late Night, when the Museum is open until midnight; Thursday Night Live, offering weekly live jazz performances and family art activities; and a range of lectures, concerts, literary readings, and dramatic and dance presentations.
The DMA acts as a catalyst for community activity and a showcase for the performing arts, engaging people of all ages and backgrounds with a diverse spectrum of programs, from exhibitions and lectures to concerts, literary readings and dramatic and dance presentations.
General admission to the Museum is free, some exhibitions require an admission ticket. The DMA offers the first free membership in the U.S. through the DMA Friends program.
The pivotal component of the Dallas Arts District is Edward Larrabee Barnes’ sprawling Dallas Museum of Art. The building’s trademark barrel vault aligns with Flora Street at this location. A major expansion occurred in 1993, with the completion of the Hamon Building on the museum’s north end. This wing provided the institution with an imposing new entrance and vehicular court facing Woodall Rodgers Freeway, as well as expanded public spaces, temporary exhibition galleries and underground parking. One of the most soothing exterior spaces in downtown is Ed Barnes’ walled sculpture garden at the DMA. Four parallel water walls subtly divide the expansive space into a series of smaller-scaled “rooms,” which are further enriched by landscape architect Dan Kiley’s sensitive landscaping and the placement of modern sculpture. The pervasive presence of falling water provides a refreshing respite to Dallas’ arid climate, and also masks the sounds of city life beyond the garden walls.The building was designed by Edward Larrabee Barnes, the 2007 winner of the American Institute of Architects Gold Medal.