Dallas Contemporary is reopening its doors after months of closure due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The contemporary art museum will, for its first exhibition, host Japanese artist Yoshimoto Nara, followed by three other exhibitions by Austin-based artist Ariel René Jackson, Italian photographer Paolo Roversi and Chinese artist Liu Xiaodong.
Nara first came into prominence during Japan’s Pop art movement in the 1990s. The main subject matter of his sculptures and paintings is deceptively simple: most works depict one seemingly innocuous subject (often pastel-hued children and animals drawn with confident, cartoonish lines) with little or no background. However, with a second glance, a viewer might notice a certain eerie side to the works, while their wide eyes often hold accusatory looks that could be sleepy-eyed irritation at being awoken from a nap—or that could be undiluted expressions of hate.
But for this exhibition, Dallas Contemporary’s survey of Nara, which is curated by Adjunct Curator Pedro Alonzo, is bringing together a large selection of works from 2006 to the present, many of which are being exhibited for the first time. Paintings, drawings, and sculptures will be displayed alongside a slideshow of photographs taken by the artist during his recent trips.
Yoshimoto Nara at Dallas Contemporary will go on display at the museum’s reopening, January 30, and will run until August 22, 2021.