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Beat The Heat With Cool Art At The Irving Arts Center 30

Every day on Art&Seek, we’re talking to people who have tips for virtual art experiences.  Share yours with us on Facebook, Instagram, or @artandseek on Twitter. Click above to listen to Marcie Inman from the Irving Arts Center,share her tip with KERA’s Nilufer Arsala. 

Marcie Inman, Director of Exhibitions & Educational Programs at Irving Arts Center

We’re deep into the dog days of summer and the usual activities we use to entertain ourselves–and keep ourselves cool–have been curtailed or at the very least altered.

Lucky for us, the Irving Arts Center is chocked full of interesting online offerings to help you beat the heat (and the boredom) of this long, long, hot summer. There’s something for everyone, and best of all, you can enjoy them from the comfort of your air-conditioned house.

Virtual art experiences at the Irving Arts Center can be found on their website

“We have a variety of virtual experiences that we’re offering including tours, artist interviews, and current exhibitions which are still physically installed in our in our Gallery,” said Marcie Inman, Director of Exhibitions & Educational Programs at Irving Arts Center.

Virtual Tours

The Meeting by Kate Jenkins

Night/Light  is a collection of photographs by Kate Jenkins. Her work incorporates constructed narratives where light plays a central role, illuminating scenes captured in the dark of night.

“Her body of work is three different series that are all linked by the fact that they are night photography–scenes captured in the dark of night,” said Inman. “Light kind of plays as a character. It’s a mysterious quality and they’re really just very gorgeous.”

Rockhopper Penguin by J.J. L’Heureux

J.J. L’Heureux’s Faces From the Southern Ocean is a collection of approximately 50 photographs that examines the animals and landscapes of Antarctica. The digital images were taken over a period of 20 years during Ms. L’Heureux’s expeditions to Antarctica.

The show is named for the animal portraits or “faces” L’Heureux captured during her excursions. You have a sense of not just the animal in its environment, but this kind of sense of individualism and personality. So they are quite striking,” said Inman.

Take a tour of the artwork from elementary students from the Irving Independent School District. This special exhibition of colorful works will put a smile on your face.

Online Exhibitions

Choosing to Participate (Smithsonian Poster Exhibition)

Choosing to Participate is an online poster exhibition designed to encourage dialogue, engagement, respect, and participation in classrooms and communities. The show is a partnership between the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service (SITES) and the educational organization Facing History and Ourselves.

Inman says the poster exhibition is about inspiring people to create positive social change while addressing racism, intolerance, and other kinds of very timely issues.

35th Annual Texas & Neighbors Regional Art Exhibition

London Morning by Debbie Parmley

This annual collaboration between the Irving Art Association and the Irving Arts Center. features 85 works of art chosen from a record 883 entries.  326 artists from a five state area of Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma & Texas entered the show. This year’s competition introduced two new categories: Photography and Sculpture.

Virtual Art-Making Experiences

Many of the Center’s youth & family programs have been converted to offer virtual and “to go” experiences.

Photo: Irving Arts Center

Second Family Funday, which was an in person program, is now in a virtual format featuring DIY craft videos and take-home craft project goody bags offered for curbside parking lot pickup.

“Every month we’ve had a different theme,” said Inman. “We’ve done Summer Splash with a sailboat craft, camping stories and firefly jars crafts, and for Mother’s Day we did Masterpieces with Mom and created a collage inspired by a piece by Picasso.”

Inman also notes that the supplies for the craft projects are things that you already have around the house. No need to make a special run to the store.

Got a tip? Email Therese Powell at You can follow her on Twitter @TheresePowell13

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