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Let’s Start This Week With A Roundup

by Jerome Weeks 9 Sep 2013 5:30 AM

The News gets a new art critic at last and it’s a surprise, the News‘ architecture critic fries Museum Tower, Fort Worth will be less literature-friendly and nobody cares if you fry someone in Vegas: The wonderful things we learn from today’s Roundup.


WOW. Former DMA director Rick Brettell is the News‘ new art critic. Roundup hereby issues a hearty ‘Welcome aboard!’ This is another ‘double appointment,’ meaning Brettell will remain a full-time UTD prof. No word, though, on resolving any conflict-of-interest issues when he reviews DMA shows.

WAIT, HE DOESN’T? Mark Lamster, the News’ new architecture critic, doesn’t like Museum Tower. Absolutely nothing about it, not even its Gold LEED certification (it’s “difficult to square a building that boasts of “private estates in the sky” with any serious notion of green living.”) But then, he’s also got some words for the Arts District and the Nasher when it comes to being walled bastions:

On this score, the Nasher Sculpture Center, the principal victim of the tower’s reflected rays, would do well to think about its own street presence. The stone walls that shield Museum Tower were modeled on the Nasher’s own ramparts. If the Arts District wants to be something more than a bastion of privilege, it needs to come out from behind its walls.

Which, um, well, would seem to be much of the point of the Nasher XChange.

LEARNING FROM OTHERS. Speaking of the Nasher, Roundup believes it was the first to point to the similarity with London’s “Walkie Talkie” tower (check the time stamp), the Jaguar-melting skyscraper. Now comes word from the building’s architect, Rafael Vinoly, that he didn’t design it this way, budget cuts killed louvers that would have prevented the problem. But he did offer three helpful statements we haven’t heard in the Nasher v. Museum Tower fracas. 1. Global warming is partly to blame. 2. An earlier hotel of his in Las Vegas had a similar problem: “But who cares if you fry somebody in Vegas, right?” And 3, the refreshing admittance: “We made a lot of mistakes with this building, and we will take care of it.”

WHY LARRY McMURTRY CALLED IT A ‘BOOKLESS STATE.’ A favorite benefit of seeing shows in Sundance Square at Circle Theatre or Bass Hall was hitting the Barnes & Noble bookstore nearby. So humane, so perfectly big-city-ish: Come early, get a coffee, peruse the books and periodicals, then stroll over to your show with something to read during intermission. North Texas doesn’t have many pedestrian-friendly, literature-friendly, live-theater-friendly experiences like this. And now it’ll have even less: By year’s end, the Sundance Barnes & Noble will close. So, too, the one in Fort Worth’s University Park Village. (You’ll have to trust me on this: The story appeared in Saturday’s Metro but is nowhere on the News online.) On the other hand, Lucky Dog Bookstore on Garland Road is still wagging its tail.

  • bill holston

    great article. Thanks Jerome. Lucky Dog is not IN Garland. It’s in Casa View on Garland Road. A great addition to our neighborhood.

  • bill holston

    great article. Thanks Jerome. Lucky Dog is not IN Garland. It’s in Casa View on Garland Road. A great addition to our neighborhood.

  • JeromeWeeks

    Thanks much. Correction made.

  • JeromeWeeks

    Thanks much. Correction made.