Thursday, December 3
Holiday Presence 11
If you pride yourself on being a great gift giver, or you’d like to be one, you really can’t go wrong with a work of art. Especially one by a local artist. Every year, Kettle Art (2650 Main St.) hosts its Holiday Presence show, featuring a variety of its regular exhibiting artists. Most work is priced under $100 — perfect for gifts. Artists participating this year include Richard Ross, Brad Albright, Brandy Collins, Hilda LaFleur, Justin Clumpner and more. Swing through the opening reception from 7-10 p.m. Thursday, or through December 17. More at kettleart.com.
First Thursdays at the Joule
The Joule (1530 Main St.) always feels like a swanky, miniature art gallery. If you’re like us, usually you just wander the Taschen library and buy a coffee at Weekend (the only thing you can afford), but now you can enjoy a kick-ass cultural experience in this gorgeous setting. At The Joule’s First Thursdays, you can browse the knick-knacks and aesthetically pleasing, well-curated selection of goods (some at great markdowns) while listening to JT Donaldson spin tunes and enjoying a killer happy hour. Ms. Patty Cake will also be on hand doing nail art, so even if you don’t buy anything else, you can get tiny little masterpieces on your hands, a gift that gives every time you look down. More at thejouledallas.com. - Amy McCarthy
Friday, December 4
Jingle Bells on Bishop
You won’t find much Christmas spirit in the crowded malls, parking lots and highways this holiday season: They’re fraught with tension and stress and way too many unhappy people. The key to seasonal cheer is in the smaller venues where you’ll bump into your neighbors, load up on unique gifts and shop steps away from local restaurants ready to ply you with warm cocktails and sweet treats. Jingle Bells on Bishop is your antidote to the dark side of December: Your beloved Bishop Arts boutiques and eateries are rolling out the red-and-green carpet from 5 until 9 p.m. Friday and from 10 a.m. until 9 p.m. Saturday in the area around the intersection of Davis and Bishop streets. Entertainment for the whole family will be available in the form of carolers and live music, and Santa will make an appearance to hear exactly what’s on your wish list. The festivities are free; visit facebook.com to learn more. - Jennifer Davis-Lamm
Annual Holiday Mercantile
Ready or not, Christmas is here, and with it, the need to buy a gift for everyone in your life, warm up the vocal cords for caroling and take in the holiday lights and cheer. Oil & Cotton (817 W. Davis St.) hopes to help you with all those things this weekend during the Annual Holiday Mercantile. Starting at 5 p.m. Friday and stretching through the weekend, swing through the shop for a number of workshops, events and deals to benefit you and the other crafty people in your life. At 5 p.m. Friday there will be a holiday voice workshop with Sarah Alexander, followed by a performance; stop by an open studio to make gifts at 1 p.m. Saturday ($10 admission or $15 for two); or there’s a brunch and screenprinting lesson with Mylan Nguyen and Jessica Trevizo ($45) at noon Sunday. And that’s just a taste of what’s planned. Find out more at oilandcotton.com.
Cowboys of Waggoner Ranch Photography Exhibit
Fort Worth-based photographer Jeremy Enlow was given access to Waggoner Ranch, the largest working ranch in the nation, to capture portraits of Cow Camp workers who rely upon the same skills required of ranchers in 1854. Some of these cowboys are just passing through and others stay for decades. Unlike many Americans, these people are still struggling with nature. They get up before sunrise, often working in challenging weather and struggling with rattlesnakes and ornery cattle. Enlow will sign copies of his book, Cowboys of the Waggoner, during an opening reception at 4 p.m. Friday at PDNB Gallery (1202 Dragon St.). Running through December 19, the exhibit features a selection of the book’s vivid images. For more info, visit pdnbgallery.com.
It’s hard enough to feel comfortable in your own culture, let alone learn a new one with the hope that someday you’ll feel like you belong. In the new exhibition at Ro2 Art (110 N. Akard St.), Belonging, Korean artists Bumin Kim, Yuni Lee and Jieun Lim use various media to explore the idea of trying to belong to multiple cultures. With string, thread, wire, cable ties and holi powder, the three artists have created colorful patterns and shapes for what promises to be a compelling show. The opening reception is from 7-10 p.m. Friday. More at ro2art.com.
Saturday, December 5
If being contrary is your thing, the Texas Theatre, 231 West Jefferson Blvd., would like to throw you a bone — an anti-funny bone, if you will. At 8 p.m. Saturday, they’ll start off an evening dedicated to the averse with a screening of anti-comedian Neil Hamburger’s film Entertainment. Following that, you’ll be treated to an evening of challenging diversions — like sets from local comedians Clint Werth and Andy Franklin, and music from the entirely disagreeable group of self-described cyber-goths known as Bukkake Moms. Between sets, head to the lobby for an anti-vinyl set from DJ George Quartz. Tickets are $10 for the film, $5 for the comedy and music, or $13 for both — which is a pretty amenable deal for such an antagonistic event. To purchase tickets, head to thetexastheatre.com. -JDL
Holiday shopping doesn’t have to be about zoning out in bland department stores or giving up and buying gift cards — there are ways to gift creatively and keep yourself engaged in the process. El Mercado at the Erin Cluley Gallery, 414 Fabrication St., is the perfect example: Part art and design show, part one-of-a-kind marketplace, this is where art and commerce come together to benefit both giver and receiver. From noon-8 p.m. Saturday, you’ll find an exhibition of eight artists’/designers’ work along with a Latin-inspired marketplace featuring each contributor’s exclusive jewelry, clothing, handmade bags, home goods, prints and specially designed Stetson hats. The hybrid shopping/art event will feature locals like B.Stellar, Rob Wilson, Wheron, Bedthread, Desert Hide and Neobantu; as well as Baltimore’s René Treviño and New York’s Richard Phillips. The event is free; head to erincluley.com for details. - JDL
Celebrate the Holidays with Klyde Warren Park
When they first told us they were building a park over the highway, we were skeptical. We said it would be weird — too much concrete, choked with noise and highway exhaust, and out of place. Now Dallas can’t imagine life without Klyde Warren Park (2012 Woodall Rodgers Freeway). It’s a social centerpiece where we gather for birthday parties, art events, dance parties, fitness classes and to commiserate with new friends in never-ending food truck lines. Celebrating the kickoff to Christmas at the park is a no-brainer; it feels like home at this point. Join friends new and old to Celebrate the Holidays at Klyde Warren Park from noon until 6 p.m. Saturday. The beloved public space turns into a holiday wonderland, complete with live reindeer, Christmas crafts, face painting, live music, visits with Santa and a tree lighting at 5:45 p.m. To find out more about the free community event, visit klydewarrenpark.org. - JDL
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Reliant Lights Your Holidays
The Arts District gets festive this weekend, with photos with santa, fireworks and a performance by the Polyphonic Spree, among other things. The event stretches from 5:30-8:30 p.m. just outside the Winspear Opera House in Sammons Park.
Had it with Christmas music and holiday coffee blends? Seeking to think outside the gift-wrapped box this year, and maybe put yourself on the naughty list for once? Krampus is probably your guy then — a big hairy beast who, according to Central European legend, takes it upon himself to scare the bejesus out of little kids who are more likely to get lumps of coal than a big score from Santa. It’s not that Krampus is anti-Christmas, he just seeks to restore a little balance. The Krampus Society shows off their special blend of Christmas jeers and cheers during the Krampus Walk 2015, a collection of fun-loving cynics, borderline misanthropes and slightly off merry-makers that kicks off at Wits End (2724 Elm St.) at 8 p.m. Saturday. It’s free to participate; get the details at facebook.com. - JDL
Housed in a storefront in Exposition Park, Beefhaus is one of the city’s few artist-run spaces keeping things fresh. Recently reinvigorated with a swath of new artists at the helm, the space is off to a roaring start. This weekend, Pierre Krause curates SOFT4SOFT, a group show featuring artists Kyle Hide, Judy Locovozzi, Ronika McClain, Lauren Cook, Grace Miceli and Kelly Surdo. During the opening there will be a performance by local musician mothface. Show up at 833 Exposition Ave. at 7 p.m. Saturday. More at artbeef.blogspot.com.
Sunday, December 6
As Above, So Below
Waxahachie is a short drive from Dallas. But if you’re headed there for an art show at Webb Gallery (209 W. Franklin St., Waxahachie) it may feel like you’ve entered a different world. This space, focused on the work of self-taught artists, consistently shows art in wildly wonderful contrast to the “fine art” that can be found on the walls of most Dallas galleries. They call themselves “hawkers of fun,” which you’ll likely find in spades at the opening party from 4-7 p.m. Sunday. In addition to the art on the walls, there will be a book signing by Lynne Adele and Bruce Lee Webb, who have chronicled the art of the American Fraternal Society from 1850-1930 in As Above, So Below. Admission is free. More at webbartgallery.com.