Reporters may contact: Craig Boleman
cboleman@mail.smu.edu
SMU Meadows School of the Arts
(214) 768-3785

 

MEADOWS MUSEUM ANNOUNCES INAUGURAL EXHIBITION IN NEW BUILDING: "POETICS OF MOVEMENT: THE ARCHITECTURE OF SANTIAGO CALATRAVA"

Exhibition Made Possible by a $275,000 Gift from Communities Foundation of Texas

DALLAS (SMU): The inaugural special exhibition in Meadows Museum's new building, located on the Southern Methodist University campus in Dallas, Texas, will be a retrospective presentation of the work of Spain's great architect-engineer-sculptor Santiago Calatrava. Running from March 25, 2001 through August 5, 2001, "Poetics of Movement: The Architecture of Santiago Calatrava" is conceived and guest curated by Professor Alexander Tzonis of the University of Technology of Delft. The exhibition is fully funded by a $275,000 grant from the Margot W. and Ben H. Mitchell Fund of Communities Foundation of Texas.

Describing the exhibit, curator Tzonis states, "The exhibition shows a major part of Caltrava's oeuvre with an emphasis on his architecture and bridges. Almost the entire collection of his models is shown. In addition, there is a complete series of small size sculptures which I have christened 'The Aegean Pieces'- photographs, explanatory panels, and a few shop drawings of major projects. A continuously running video on Calatrava will accompany the show, as well."

The exhibit will also include figural studies in watercolor and other media. Through these latter works, Calatrava maintains an ongoing exploration for new forms and their interactions with movement and flow through space. These are the raw materials for some of his innovational architectural and structural shapes, which embody ribbon-like flow, torsion, and unexpected visual tensions between support members and surrounding space.

In an interesting incorporation of material from the Meadows Collection, Professor Tzonis has selected a small number of Goya prints, the work of an artist whom Calatrava has studied in depth, to demonstrate morphological affinities between Goya's figures in movement and Calatrava's structures.

Santiago Calatrava enjoys an international reputation for his architectural designs and sculptures. In 1981 Calatrava received his doctorate of technical science from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich, for a dissertation titled On the Foldability of Space Frames. That same year he opened an architectural and engineering practice in Zurich. His expanding recognition and body of work led him to open offices in Paris and Valencia.

Noted for his wedding of fluid, almost aerial forms with strongly functional structure, Calatrava is perhaps best known for his bridges and airport designs. His dynamic designs integrate technology and aesthetics, producing structural forms that challenge traditional practice in both architecture and engineering. Some of his most notable works include Alamillo Bridge and La Cartuja Viaduct in Seville, the Lyon Airport Railway Station, the Campo Volantin Footbridge, the Sondica Airport in Bilbao, and the Montjuic Broadcasting Tower in Barcelona. An important Calatrava-designed extension to the Milwaukee Art Museum is almost complete. Calatrava is also the designer of a series of proposed new bridges over the Trinity River in Dallas.

On November 4, 2000 Calatrava became the 15th recipient of the Algur H. Meadows Award for Excellence in the Arts. This award is presented annually to recognize an artist at the pinnacle of a distinguished career.

The exhibition's curator, Alexander Tzonis, holds the chair of Architectural Theory and Design Methods at the University of Technology of Delft and is Director of Design Knowledge Systems, a multi-disciplinary research center. He was educated at Yale University and taught at Harvard University between 1967 and 1981. He has held visiting professorships at MIT, Columbia University, the University of Singapore, and the Technion in Israel. He is the author of numerous publications on architecture and architectural theory, a number of them in collaboration with L. Lefaivre. Among these are two studies of the work of Santiago Calatrava.

For nearly 50 years, Communities Foundation of Texas has provided individuals, families, corporations and foundations in Dallas and across the state of Texas a visionary and rewarding approach to philanthropy. CFT is a permanent and growing endowment and is among the 10 largest community foundations in the nation. With assets of more than $600 million, CFT has awarded over $450 million in charitable grants since its inception. Its singular mission is to ensure that each donor's legacy is wisely invested, each grant is effective and a donor's family name is preserved forever.

The new Meadows Museum at SMU will double the current museum's exhibition space for the Meadows Museum Collection -- the most comprehensive and one of the largest collections of Spanish art outside of Spain. The new museum, located on Bishop Boulevard just north of the Mockingbird Lane entrance to the campus, is made possible largely by gifts totaling $20 million from The Meadows Foundation.

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