Iris Bechtol turned her Elmwood front yard into a museum focused on making the everyday extraordinary in 2015.
The artist’s outdoor exhibition space Terrain Dallas is back with an exhibit from Doug Land called “Front Yard Museum.”
It consists of arboretum-style signage for some of the flora in Bechtol’s front yard: “Each label contains the plant’s common name; latin name; country of origin; average size; blooming period; ecological benefits; human uses; and any other interesting facts.”
Land’s likening of the curated yard to the museum makes more apparent human intervention in the manipulation of nature. Many of the species in the suburban yard are non-native, having been transported from various places over the years and driven by trade practices. Like many museums, the suburban yard is now a collection of complex cultures and histories. “True, these trees, shrubs, perennials, ground covers and grasses are the outdoor decor of our home. But their existence is more than seasonal growth. What if for a moment, these plants are the living representations of time passed? In some neighborhoods, the trees are older than the houses they shade. While in other neighborhoods, the plants were installed yesterday. These plants contain histories. They model symbolism. They support communities and create ecologies.” In his proposal, the plant life we have collected becomes more than just aesthetically pleasing or decoratively practical. They become living artworks with histories.
Viewing times are 10 a.m.-6 p.m. seven days a week. The show is free and runs through Aug. 23 at 1122 Elmdale Place.
Here is Land’s bio:
Doug Land is an emerging artist and graduate student at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, TX. His first solo exhibition, Extravagant Rubbish: Aesthetic Forms and Their Opposites opened at The Ant Colony in Dallas, TX in 2015. Land was a 2018 artist in residence at The Carillon Gallery at Tarrant County College South Campus, culminating in his solo exhibition, Metallangen: the metal meadow. His website features his exhibitions and Notes on Growing, a lively blog featuring lots of nerdy plant information.