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Wednesday, October 5, 2022
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Meadows Museum: A Hidden Treasure


Virginia Meadows Galleries at the Meadows Museum. | Image from DMN

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The Meadows Museum is a hidden wonder of Dallas. Located on the campus of Southern Methodist University in Northern Dallas, it is home to one of the largest collections of Spanish art outside of Spain, with pieces dating from the 10th to the 21st century. It is also a division of SMU’s Meadows School of the Arts.   

The painters included in the museum’s collections are Picasso, Murillo, El Greco, Sorolla, and more. The Meadows Museum opened to the public for the first time in 1965.  

The museum’s Spanish art collection was a gift from Algur H. Meadows, a Dallas businessman and founder of General American Oil Company of Texas.

During the 1950s, Meadows frequented Madrid, where he paid multiple visits to the Prado Museum. Prado is where he would begin his abiding interest in the art of the Spanish Golden Age.

By 1962, Meadows had acquired his own unique collection, which would serve as the groundwork for the Meadow Museum. After Meadows died in 1978, the museum initiated a new phase of collecting, which served as the core of the present collection on hand.     

Currently, the museum is home to many Spanish art pieces from around the world. “The Three Graces” sculpture by Aristide Maillol is one of them, and it radiates the upstairs hallway. There are rooms on both sides of the statue that offer a step into Spanish culture, clothing, and aesthetics.    

There are two exhibits in one of the rooms: ‘Canvas & Silk: Historic Fashion from Madrid’s Museo Del Traje’ and ‘Image & Identity: Mexican Fashion in the Modern Period.’

Both exhibits are explorations into Spanish and Mexican cultures along with fashions accurate for the respective periods. These exhibits at the Meadows Museum will be open to the public until January 9, 2022.   

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