Dallas Festival of Books and Ideas at the DMA

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The Inspired City, planned by the DMA’s literary series Arts & Letters Live, connects art, people, books, and ideas in creative ways, ignites curiosity, and offers unique experiences for all ages. Hear award-winning authors talk about their latest books and meet them personally at book signings. Experience the DMA in new ways through interactive workshops and gallery walks led by authors, activities led by artists, and more.

Download the full program schedule. 

 

SPEAKERS

Oscar Cásares
2:15 to 3:15 p.m.
Horchow Auditorium 

Tackling the immigration crisis from a human angle, Oscar Cásares's novel Where We Come From explores the ways that family history shapes us, how secrets can burden us, and how finding compassion for others can ultimately set us free.

Kimberly Willis Holt
2:30 to 3:15 p.m.
C3 Theater 

This National Book Award–winning author talks about her new middle-grade novel The Lost Boy’s Gift, a coming-of-age tale with a magical twist that explores friendship, forgiveness, animals, and the power that comes with listening closely.

Brian Jay Jones
3:45 to 4:45 p.m. 
Horchow Auditorium

This master profiler of creative geniuses (George Lucas and Jim Henson) shares his new biography Becoming Dr. Seuss: Theodor Geisel and the Making of an American Imagination. Explore the complex man behind the pseudonym.

Elizabeth Letts
3:45 to 4:45 p.m. 
Horchow Auditorium

New York Times bestselling author Elizabeth Letts is a master at discovering and researching a rich historical story and transforming it into a page-turner. Letts’s new novel Finding Dorothy is the result of her journey into the amazing lives of Frank and Maud Baum and tells a story of love, loss, inspiration, and perseverance. 

“Beautifully researched and written, Finding Dorothy pulls back the curtain on a fascinating relationship behind the making of The Wizard of Oz.” —Martha Hall Kelly, author of Lilac Girls

Rhett Miller
11:15 a.m. to noon
Founders Room

Poetry/Lyrics Writing Workshop
Acclaimed singer-songwriter Rhett Miller (Old 97’s) leads a hands-on workshop of poetry and lyric writing. Designed for ages 7 through adults. Space is limited.

Rhett Miller and Dan Santat
12:30 to 1:15 p.m.
C3 Theater

Acclaimed singer-songwriter Rhett Miller teams up with Caldecott Medalist and bestselling artist Dan Santat in a riotous collection of irreverent poems for modern families, No More Poems!: A Book in Verse That Just Gets Worse.

Sarah Rose
2:45 to 3:45 p.m.
Founders Room

The author of D-Day Girls: The Spies Who Armed the Resistance, Sabotaged the Nazis, and Helped Win World War II reveals the never-before-told true story of the extraordinary women recruited by Britain’s elite spy agency to help pave the way for Allied victory. The book was praised by author Erik Larson as “gripping” and Publishers Weekly as “rigorously researched . . . a mesmerizing story of creativity, perseverance, and astonishing heroism” (starred review).

Etaf Rum
2:15 to 3:15 p.m.
Horchow Auditorium

A Read with Jenna Today Show Book Club Pick, Etaf Rum’s debut novel, A Woman Is No Man, gives us a glimpse inside the controlled and closed world of conservative Arab women living in America. It is both a suspenseful page-turner and an intimate family portrait—a story of culture and honor, secrets and betrayals, love and violence, and a universal tale about the ways silence and shame can destroy those we have sworn to protect. Fans of Khaled Hosseini’s books won’t want to miss this new and powerful voice.

Dan Santat
3 to 4 p.m.
C3 Studio & Level 3 Galleries 

Join Caldecott Medal–winning illustrator Dan Santat as he demonstrates how to create characters with amazing facial expressions, and then try your hand at sketching faces and masks in the DMA’s African Galleries.

Typewriter Rodeo: Poetry Workshop
1:15 to 2 p.m.
Level 4 landing 

Austin-based Typewriter Rodeo will be on hand with their vintage typewriters to write custom spontaneous poems on any topic you want or inspired by a work of art.

Typewriter Rodeo: Poems on Demand
2:15 to 4:45 p.m.
Level 4 landing 

Austin-based Typewriter Rodeo will be on hand with their vintage typewriters to write custom spontaneous poems on any topic you want or inspired by a work of art.

Rob Walker – Talk
1:15 to 2 p.m. 
Founders Room

In this era of digital distraction, Rob Walker’s practical strategies in The Art of Noticing: 131 Ways to Spark Creativity, Find Inspiration, and Discover Joy in the Everyday provide a field guide to becoming an explorer of your everyday world.

Rob Walker – Tour
4 to 4:45 p.m. 

Join author Rob Walker on a walk through the DMA galleries, implementing fun and clever strategies of close looking from his book The Art of Noticing
Space is limited. First-come, first-served. 

Jamil Zaki
4 to 4:45 p.m.
Founders Room

Director of the Stanford Social Neuroscience Lab talks about his new book The War for Kindness: Building Empathy in a Fractured World. Author Angela Duckworth hails it as a “masterpiece . . . [that] weaves together the very latest science with stories that will stay in your heart forever.”

 

Download the full program schedule.

GETTING TO THE FESTIVAL: 

Due to large events on Saturday in Klyde Warren Park and at the DMA, we expect the DMA’s garage to fill early.

Please allow extra time to find a parking spot and arrive at the Dallas Festival of Books & Ideas.  

Ridesharing

We strongly encourage ridesharing (Uber or Lyft) or carpooling with friends. Efrogs is a tip-based shuttle service that provides no-charge shuttle service in Downtown Dallas and surrounding areas. Each shuttle can accommodate up to five people. Text the addresses of your departure and arrival with a set time to 469-432-4055. Please note that they have other riders and are not exclusively on call for this event.

Parking Details

If space is available in the DMA’s underground parking garage, festival attendees can say “DALLAS FESTIVAL” upon entry to the garage to receive half-price parking ($7).

Other nearby parking garages are at 2000 Ross Avenue and 720 St. Paul St. (Ross Tower Garage). Parking in those two garages is $10/day.

Other public surface lots in the downtown area are near the Dallas World Aquarium and Perot Museum of Nature and Science.

For alternate parking options, visit the Dallas Arts District website.    

DART between festival venues on Saturday

So that festival participants can enjoy the morning sessions at the J. Erik Jonsson Library downtown and then come to the DMA, DART is providing two transit education buses to bring people between the two venues. Between 12:30-2:30 p.m., buses will load in front of the library on Young Street and come to the DMA. Between 4:30-5:30 p.m., buses will load at the corner of Harwood and Flora Streets at the DMA and return to the library.

 

For more books and ideas, view the full festival schedule! 

 

REGISTER TO ATTEND
All activities are FREE! Registration is encouraged but not required. Your registration allows us to send you logistical information and helpful details shortly before the festival. Please note registration does not guarantee you a seat. Seats are first-come, first-served.