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Special “Eye” to Watch
June Mattingly // contributing art writer

Centraltrak “The Non-Profit Margin” through July 24

Centraltrak art term-wise is an alternative space or non-collecting museum. In Texas alone
comparable spaces include the Ballroom in Marfa, the MAC and the Dallas Contemporary
in Dallas, Project Row Houses and Diverse Works in Houston, Blue Star in San Antonio and
Arthouse in Austin. These facilities are typically admission free and run by a hardworking staff;
all follow quite different missions.
Katie Sheerin is Centraltrak’s dedicated director (Clarissa Terranova was her predecessor)
of the ongoing lecture series, workshops often off-site, and a full exhibition calendar.
Recently Centraltrak sponsored a symposium at S.M.U. and a program at Undermain
Theater. The University of Texas at Dallas’ Centraltrak , is not only an art destination but an
artists’ residency providing space for eight artists to live, work and exhibit from one month
to one year. Artists are selected by a committee of senior faculty of the School of Arts &
Humanities. The wonderful renovated former Fair Park Post Office, that holds the Gallery
and Residency since 2008 is located at 800 Exposition Avenue in the historic Deep Ellum
neighborhood. The name Centraltrak derives from the “central tracks” of a tramline that
once connected the south side of the city to Main Street and the Central Business District.   

The focus of this show according to the Newsletter is “Each of the participating artists
in The Non-Profit Margin mines the divide between social art and art as social practice
by presenting installations that propose solutions for contemporary artists seeking to
work outside the ‘white box.’” Five examples start with Shelby Cunningham “offering
an alternative marketing solution for artists through the organization of the ‘trunk show,’
an automobile-based art fair that eschews the illusionary tactics of the invitational art
fair by embracing open participation”…
800 Exposition Avenue
Dallas, TX 75226-1747
Thomas Riccio and Dr. Frank Dufour “extend
the profitability of the art object with their
memory machine, which asks the viewer to
pay for his art experience”…Marjorie
Schwarz “addresses the proverbial day job
from formal aesthetics,” and Richie Budd
places “emphasis on the body of the
artist…by introducing the notion of the
artist’s body as a commodity to be
exploited.” In summation, “During this
post-market-glut economic correction,
the artist’s quest for greater economic
autonomy has gained critical urgency…
can an artist make living from his art is
inverted to can an artist make art out
of his or her living?”

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