microresidenciesAre you creative? If so, the city of Dallas might just have a spot for you in a unique program that provides microresidencies within city departments to foster creative solutions.

The City of Dallas Office of Cultural Affairs announced this week that it was opening up the second round of microresidencies, which are aimed at artists, arts educators, and designers.

“The goal of the residencies is for creative thinkers/artists to embed themselves in non-arts-focused City departments and offer creative innovations and solutions to improve their operations and processes,” the department said. “The residencies are not intended to create art FOR the Departments, but rather to bring different artistic perspectives or changes TO existing operations – to show that artistic and creative thinking is part of everything we do and that creative thinkers are valuable team members.” (more…)

Big Thought

Fossil Group will host its seventh annual Works of HeART auction and fundraiser next week, benefitting Big Thought, a nonprofit organization working to close the opportunity gap (Photo courtesy Can Turkyilmaz).

Have some empty walls and empty shelves you need to fill? Fossil Group will host its seventh annual Works of HeART auction and fundraiser next week, and the money from that piece of art you could pick up there will go to benefit Big Thought, a nonprofit organization working to close the opportunity gap.

The event, which will be held Friday, Feb. 1, from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. at Fossil Group Headquarters, will showcase original artwork created by company employees. Paintings, textiles, jewelry and even a 3D printed piece are on the auction block, and all proceeds from ticket sales and the silent auction will support Big Thought, a Fossil Foundation partner.

Big Thought’s mission of closing the opportunity gap for area students includes in-school, out-of-school and community partnership programs, with the idea that making imagination part of everyday learning can help achieve that. The organization also helps ensure that students get high-quality learning experiences (their summer camps are the stuff of wonder, and are offered free of charge) that promote creativity as well as social and emotional learning. (more…)

Maestri Gallery

Eddie Maestri is one of those guys that innately knows what’s cool. I met Eddie years ago, in my former life as a photography stylist and producer. I was scouting cool houses, and of course, he lived in one. Eddie has become one of the finest architects in Dallas. He has developed Maestri Studio, a full-service, turn-key architecture and interior design studio, into one of the most cutting-edge firms in the city. They not only build you a fantastic home, but with the launch of Maestri Gallery at 401 Exposition Avenue, they can also furnish it right down to the artwork and accessories. (more…)

jen ayyad Ricardo Salas

All photos: Daniel Martinez DM Photography

Art and real estate are colliding with beautiful results in the worlds of two promising Dallasites.

Jennifer Ayyad and Ricardo Salas, Jr. just wrapped up a successful art show at Coeval Studios in the Dallas Design District. In attendance on Sept. 15 were about 100 designers, builders, architects, Realtors, friends, family, collectors, and clients.

By day, Ayyad is a Realtor with Nathan Grace and Salas is sales professional. Both of these seasoned artists found a receptive audience in the real estate world with their artwork. The purpose of the show was to reintroduce themselves and their new works of art in a private show.

“The importance of the event was to draw the local community in, inspire, and connect them—we firmly believe that creativity [inspires] our community’s growth,” Ayyad said, noting one reason they chose the Design District for their venue is the area’s creative vibe.

“The Design District is changing so much—I have sold property there and it’s really great that my real estate and art clients came out to support me as I have watched their businesses grow,” she said. “That is the essence of community supporting others.”


Emily Summers used pieces from her own furniture collection, as well as from the delectable SMINK here in the Dallas Design District to keep it soft and subtle and let the art sing. Her giant 4096 square foot model home seemed to take up an entire floor, and really, walking in there was almost like being on a cloud. Unlike Schooler’s complete change of wall finishes, Summers kept the original finishes, and the furnishings she brought in enhanced them. But she did lighten the floors, which you can see in the photo below. Amazing what a feel changing floor coloring can bring. Ashley Tatum’s art choices almost seemed as if they were created for their spaces. The design of a home, says Summers,  is a window into one’s soul.