Aurora is still over a week away, but events connected to the immersive sound, light and video take over of the Arts District in downtown Dallas are here.
Art can be hard to understand. It is subjective in its very nature — every visitor will come to a piece of work with a life of individual experiences that influence how they perceive meaning in the art.
That is why a collection of events dubbed Aurora Week, sponsored by the AT&T Performing Arts Center and Neiman Marcus, are focused on educational opportunities for students families and those looking to be more immersed in the arts in North Texas.
The events range from artist talks to an evening of jazz to an immersive gallery party the night before Aurora. For the full schedule of Aurora-related events, check out our listings.
Aurora Week boasts three talks to help the community get in the right state of mind to be immersed by the light, sound and videos the night of Aurora.
Kicking it off on Tuesday Oct. 13 is Erika Blumenfeld's lecture "Light of the Midnight Sun" at Zhulong Gallery in the Design District.
Blumenfeld is an American multi-disciplinary artist who will discuss her work created during a residency in Antartica with the Interpolar Transnational Art Science Constellation
Zhulong Gallery is a frequent exhibition space for artists working in the intersection of art and technology.
On Wednesday, Charissa Terranova, an associate professor of aesthetic studies at the University of Texas at Dallas will moderate a panel discussion titled "Media Art beyond the Digital Divide" at the Wyly Theater.
The panelists, Julia Kaganskiy, Director of New Inc., the New Museum art and technology incubator in New York City, Aja Martin, director of Zhulong Gallery and Tim Goossens, an international art curator, will speak on how media art is positioned within the fine art world. All three are guest curators for this year's Aurora exhibition.
On Thursday, the community is invited to attend a lecture by Adrien Goujard, Loris Gréaud and Frank Dufour and a screening of Gréaud's film, The Snorks: a concert for creatures.
Goujard is a researcher at the French Mediterranean Institute of Oceanology. Gréaud is a French conceptual artist who recently displayed work at the Dallas Contemporary. Dufour teaches sound design in the school of Arts, Technology, and Emerging Communications at the University of Texas at Dallas.
The film is intended to be both an "urban legend and a hallucinatory epic" inspired by exploration of a new space – in this case, the deep sea. The main characters in the film are phytoplankton and other deep ocean dwellers that utilize bioluminescence.
Tuesday evening is jammed packed with events for Aurora Week. In addition to the artist talk at Zhulong Gallery, St. Paul United Methodist Church will host "An Evening with Art and Jazz."
The event will feature a panel discussion with Michael Alexander Morris, a Dallas-based video artist, and a jazz performance by The Mack 5. Julie Kagnaskiy, the director of the New Museum, will moderate.
The Mack 5 are Stuart Mack on trumpet, Jake Greenburg on bass, Mark Hartsuch on saxophone, Brad Kang on guitar and Conner Kent on drums.
If you missed out on wearing your all white ensemble after Labor Day at the Diner en Blanc a few weeks ago, WAAS Gallery's pre-Aurora exhibition/party, E.volv, is your chance to strut your stuff and be a part of a projection mapping installation.
The event is inspired by Philip K. Dick's 1965 novel The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch, which depicts space colonists who take psychedelic drugs to make their lives in a futuristic world more tolerable. Like the novel, the exhibition will address themes of what is digital identity and how does contemporary culture allow or encourage one to manipulate your sense of self beyond the physical body.
The event will feature visuals by Taylor Effin Cleveland, Eric Trich and Edward Ruiz. Music for the event will be provided by Dallas-based DJ Uptown Goths, a.k.a. Redsean. To top off the night, Zhora will give a special performance.
Ruiz and Trich will be presenting a projection mapping project outside the gallery that incorporates sculptural elements and video production alongside a performance by Zhora. The gallery requests that attendees to the free event wear all white to assist in the projection mapping that will be on display inside and outside the building.
The event will be rounded out with a panel discussion from 7:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. with the artists titled "A Conversation with Light." The panel will be followed by a preview of exhibitions for Aurora the next night.