Dallas/ Arts & Culture
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Published on November 29, 2023
Dallas Dazzles with Daring Art on Health and HIV, Vargas Vibes to Visual AIDS at Oak CliffSource: City of Dallas

It's time to book a ticket to Dallas because the Oak Cliff Cultural Center is about to serve up a poignant slice of creativity for the socially conscious mind. Partnering with Visual AIDS, the center is launching "Everyone I Know Is Sick" on December 1st, a thought-provoking night featuring five newly minted video pieces that'll make you rethink the divide between health and illness. According to a recent release, these works aim to highlight the often overlooked intersection of HIV with other illnesses and disabilities, and they deliver a punch to the gut of societal norms, according to the City of Dallas.

Taking cues from Cyrée Jarelle Johnson's illuminating words in "Black Futures," these pieces will tackle everything from HIV to COVID and the ongoing struggles with mental health and the aging process. With artists spanning the globe from Hong Kong to Brazil and even our own backyard in the US of A, this exhibition is a veritable United Nations on the topic of health. One of the heavy hitters in this lineup is Tamera Garrett, who, according to the Oak Cliff Cultural Center, will be kicking off the Day With(out) Art series on a note that's as real as it gets for those living with HIV.

But wait, there's more for you culture vultures out there. Jose Vargas will be hitting the scene with "Retro-Matico Tres," from December 9 to January 12. Our man Vargas has a knack for blending tunes and culture into every stroke and click, crafting art pieces that sing of personal and cultural tales. "Art, like music, can be healing," Vargas explained, reveling in the sheer joy of creation. His "Twang" and "Green Mask" series, as detailed in an announcement, are just a taste of what's to come in this decades-spanning anthology of his finest works, per the City of Dallas.

Be it through paint, photos, prints, or a mixed bag of media, Vargas is the artistic jack of all-trades you didn't know you needed to witness. He's rocked over 170 exhibitions since '92 and ain't stopping anytime soon. Besides painting the town, he's thrown his hat in the curatorial ring, leaving a mark on Dallas' art scene for over 30 years.