Experience Mexican Culture, History, and Scientific Wonders as the Perot Museum and the Dallas Museum of Art Present Two Blockbuster Bilingual Exhibitions

Just blocks apart, the Perot Museum hosts Maya: Hidden Worlds Revealed, and the DMA presents México 1900–1950: Diego Rivera, Frida Kahlo, José Clemente Orozco, and the Avant-Garde

DALLAS (April 24, 2017) – Art and science come together as the Perot Museum of Nature and Science and the Dallas Museum of Art (DMA) host two major exhibitions that explore the cultural and historic wonders of Mexico and Central America during the early 20th century and ancient times. Both exhibitions are bilingual, presented in English and Spanish. The Perot Museum of Nature and Science is presenting Maya: Hidden Worlds Revealed, the largest traveling Maya exhibition ever to tour the U.S., through Sept. 4, and the DMA, in collaboration with the Mexican Secretariat of Culture, is offering the exclusive U.S. presentation of México 1900–1950: Diego Rivera, Frida Kahlo, José Clemente Orozco, and the Avant-Garde, through July 16, 2017.

“It’s remarkable that North Texans and tourists will get a chance to explore two powerful and compelling exhibitions that shine a spotlight on cultures that have influenced Texas – and the world – in so many ways,” said Dan Kohl, interim chief executive officer at the Perot Museum. “DMA Director Agustín Arteaga and I have received so many positive comments from visitors. These truly are don’t-miss exhibitions!”

The Perot Museum and the DMA are located just blocks apart in Downtown Dallas, making it possible for visitors to enjoy both exhibitions within a day.

“It is touching to see the impact that the DMA and Perot Museum exhibitions are having in our community, said Agustín Arteaga, The Eugene McDermott Director of the Dallas Museum of Art. “Visitors to México 1900–1950 and Maya: Hidden Worlds Revealed are coming in multigenerational groups to tour these two shows and explore our galleries. It is exciting to see them discovering together the rich cultural history of Mexico.”

Stepping back thousands of years in time, the Perot Museum presents Maya: Hidden Worlds Revealed, a popular, hands-on exhibition that has been embraced by museum visitors of all ages. It features elaborate royal tombs, ancient languages, human sacrifice, sports and extraordinary architecture. The stunning 10,000 square-foot display brings together nearly 250 authentic artifacts and immersive environments to explore the astonishing accomplishments of one of the most powerful indigenous Mesoamerican civilizations, which still has millions of living descendants today. Visitors will learn how the Maya built towering temples and created an intricate calendar system while discovering what archaeologists have uncovered about the once-hidden ancient Maya and why their cities declined so rapidly. Through hands-on activity stations complete with video and simulations, guests can decipher hieroglyphs, learn cultural and architectural techniques, and explore an underworld cave, ancient burial site, mural room and more. The exhibition is presented by Highland Capital Management.

The DMA is presenting México 1900–1950: Diego Rivera, Frida Kahlo, José Clemente Orozco, and the Avant-Garde, a sweeping survey featuring 190 works of painting, sculpture, photography, drawings, and films that document the country’s artistic Renaissance during the first half of the 20th century. Organized by Agustín Arteaga, the DMA’s new Eugene McDermott Director, and the result of a combined cultural endeavor between Mexico and France, this major traveling exhibition showcases the work of titans of Mexican Modernism alongside other pioneers to revisit the moment when Mexican art captured the attention of the world. The exhibit also includes a number of rarely seen works by female artists as it reveals the full history and development of modern Mexico and its cultural identity. On view through July 16, 2017, México 1900–1950 is enhanced in Dallas by the inclusion of key works from the Museum’s own exquisite collection of Mexican art, encompassing over 1,000 works that span across three millennia.

More about MAYA: HIDDEN WORLDS REVEALED. The ancient Maya have captured imaginations since news of the discovery of ruined cities in the jungles of Central America was published in 1839. Extensive research has uncovered a culture with a sophisticated worldview that, during its Classic period (250-900 CE), rivaled any civilization in Europe. During this period, the Maya built elaborate cities without the use of the wheel, communicated using a sophisticated written language, measured time accurately with detailed calendar systems, and had an advanced understanding of astronomy and agriculture.

“What’s amazing is how advanced the Maya people were during this 2,000-plus-year period. From constructing complex architecture and cities, to their scientific contributions to astronomy, agriculture, engineering and communications, the Maya have greatly influenced today’s society,” added Kohl. “This exhibition will be fun for the entire family. Guests will get a chance to play archaeologist, exploring a wealth of hands-on activities and making amazing discoveries just as the Maya did.”

Highlights of Maya: Hidden Worlds Revealed include:

  • Nearly 250 authentic artifacts including spectacular examples of Maya artistry made by masters of their craft, along with objects from everyday life. Examples include an inkpot made out of a seashell which still retains the dried pigment colors hundreds of years after active use, numerous vessels and figurines; and more.
  • Dozens of hands-on activities that dig into Maya life during the Classic period. Visitors will have a chance to decipher glyphs, decode the Maya calendar, build corbeled arches, explore tombs, investigate the Maya understanding of math and astronomy, and more.
  • An exploration of Maya architecture – from its awe-inspiring temples to the simple homes of the common people. Visitors will see a huge re-created portion of a famous frieze, or richly ornamented exterior wall portion, from the El Castillo pyramid in Xunantunich, a Maya civic ceremonial center. Guests will marvel at its size and detail, and then watch as modern technology is used to make the ancient frieze’s vivid colors emerge once again to their original vibrancy.
  • Several replica large-scale carved monuments, or stelae, that were erected in the great plazas of Maya cities. Their inscriptions have given scholars valuable insight into ancient Maya history – from royal succession to political conflicts and great battles.
  • A re-creation of the elaborate royal tomb of the Great Scrolled Skull in Santa Rita Corozal, a Maya site in Belize. Visitors will see the full tomb assemblage, which features jade, jewels, pottery and more, and explore the fascinating story that the artifacts reveal about the politics and economics of this Maya city.
  • An examination of the concepts of ritual and human sacrifice that allowed the Maya to transcend the earthly world and speak with the gods of the underworld. Visitors will see the concepts of death and rebirth – concepts that were essential to the Maya – arise throughout the exhibition.

The Perot Museum is located at 2201 N. Field Street in Dallas, Texas. Museum general admission is free for members. For ticket information, parking maps and other details visit perotmuseum.org or call 214-428-5555.

More about MÉXICO 1900–1950: DIEGO RIVERA, FRIDA KAHLO, JOSÉ CLEMENTE OROZCO, AND THE AVANT-GARDE. Organized thematically and presented in English and Spanish, México 1900–1950 reveals how Mexican 20th-century art is both directly linked to the international avant-garde and distinguished by an incredible singularity, forged in part by the upheaval and transformation caused by the Mexican Revolution in the early 1900s. The exhibition begins with an introduction to the 19th-century imagery and traditions that pre-dated and, in turn, inspired Mexican Modernism, and includes work produced by Mexican artists living and working in Paris at the turn of the century. It then examines how the Revolution helped cement both a new national identity and a visual culture in Mexico, as embodied most famously by the murals of Rivera, Orozco and David Alfaro Siqueiros.

“The DMA has a rich history of collecting and presenting Mexican art, and this exhibition offers our visitors the opportunity to explore in-depth the diverse and vibrant voices that distinguish Mexican art during the first half of the 20th century,” said Arteaga. “México 1900–1950 showcases not only the greats of Mexican art but also those who may have been eclipsed on the international level by names like Rivera and Kahlo. The exhibition helps broaden our understanding of what modern Mexican art means, and diversify the artistic narratives attributed to the country.”

The DMA’s México 1900–1950 includes a significant emphasis on the work of female artists, who were supported by patrons like Dolores Olmedo and María Izquierdo. The thematic section “Strong Women” includes work by Frida Kahlo and her lesser-known but equally distinguished compatriots, including artists like Nahui Olin, photographer Tina Modotti, multidisciplinary artist Rosa Rolanda, and photographer Lola Álvarez Bravo, among others. Representing the response of Mexican artists to art movements from around the world with a cosmopolitan vision, the exhibition also features the artwork of abstract sculptor German Cueto, Manuel Rodríguez Lozano, Abraham Ángel, Roberto Montenegro and Rufino Tamayo. A final section reveals the cross-pollination specifically between American and Mexican artists and the resulting profound effect this had on art production in both countries.

México 1900–1950: Diego Rivera, Frida Kahlo, José Clemente Orozco, and the Avant-Garde is organized by the Dallas Museum of Art and the Secretaría de Cultura/Instituto Nacional de Bellas Artes/Museo Nacional de Arte, México (MUNAL), in partnership with the Latino Center for Leadership Development. The exclusive US presentation is made possible with support from Patrón Tequila. Leadership support is provided by Jennifer and John Eagle, the Eugene McDermott Foundation, Nancy C. and Richard R. Rogers, Beverly and Don Freeman, Interceramic, Allen and Kelli Questrom, Peggy and Carl Sewell/Sewell Automotive, Gayle and Paul Stoffel, and Vitro. Marketing support is provided by the Dallas Tourism Public Improvement District. Additional support provided by the Graham Williford Foundation for American Art, Mary Noel and Bill Lamont, Cristina and Harry Lynch, Claire Dewar, Dr. and Mrs. Mark L. Lemmon, Linda Marcus, Nancy M. O’Boyle, Nancy Shutt, Arlene and John Dayton, Amy A. Faulconer, Melissa and Trevor Fetter, Nancy and Jeremy Halbreich, Elisabeth and Panos Karpidas, Locke Lord LLP, Adriana and Guillermo Perales, Margot and Ross Perot, Deedie Rose, Alfredo Duarte, Rusty and Bill Duvall, Carolyn and Karl Rathjen, and Laura Sanchez.

Tickets to the DMA’s México 1900–1950 are $16 with discounts for seniors, students, and military. DMA members and children 11 and under are free. The Museum is also presenting a series of sponsored Family Days celebrating México 1900–1950. DMA Family Days, developed in partnership with the Latino Center for Leadership Development, features free admission for all to the exhibition on selected Sundays and programs and activities inspired by the exhibition.                                                                          

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About the Perot Museum of Nature and Science. The top cultural attraction in Dallas/Fort Worth and a Michelin Green Guide three-star destination, the Perot Museum of Nature and Science is a nonprofit educational organization located in the heart of Dallas, Texas, with campuses in Victory Park and Fair Park. With a mission to inspire minds through nature and science, the Perot Museum delivers exciting, engaging and innovative visitor and outreach experiences through its education, exhibition, and research and collections programming for children, students, teachers, families and life-long learners. The 180,000-square-foot facility in Victory Park opened in December 2012 and is now recognized as the symbolic gateway to the Dallas Arts District. Future scientists, mathematicians and engineers will find inspiration and enlightenment through 11 permanent exhibit halls on five floors of public space; a children’s museum; a state-of-the art traveling exhibition hall; and The Hoglund Foundation Theater, a National Geographic Experience. Designed by 2005 Pritzker Architecture Prize Laureate Thom Mayne and his firm Morphosis Architects, the Victory Park museum has been lauded for its artistry and sustainability. To learn more, please visit perotmuseum.org

About the Dallas Museum of Art. Established in 1903, the Dallas Museum of Art (DMA) is among the 10 largest art museums in the country and is distinguished by its commitment to research, innovation and public engagement. At the heart of the Museum and its programs is its global collection, which encompasses more than 23,000 works and spans 5,000 years of history, representing a full range of world cultures. Located in the nation’s largest arts district, the Museum 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. Since the Museum’s return to free general admission in 2013, the DMA has welcomed more than two and a half million visitors. For more information, visit DMA.org. The Dallas Museum of Art is supported, in part, by the generosity of DMA Members and donors, the citizens of Dallas through the City of Dallas Office of Cultural Affairs, and the Texas Commission on the Arts.