Texas Medal of Arts Awards Honor Dallasites

The awards honor Texans who have achieved excellence through their artistic talents or who have generously supported the arts.


Two talented people and a well-known organization with Dallas ties are being honored yesterday and Wednesday at the biennial Texas Medal of Arts Awards in Austin. 

The awards, given by the Texas Cultural Trust, honor Texans who have achieved excellence through their artistic talents or who have generously supported the arts. 

The Dallas Black Dance Theatre is being recognized for its achievement in arts education. Since 1976, the DBDT has been bridging diverse communities in Dallas through its educational and artistic programs. 

Dallas native Frank Welch is being honored for his success in architecture. He began his work in 1959, focusing on single-family homes but has since expanded his work to include several building types. He is known for his architectural masterpieces that are both dazzling and comforting. 

Although not a Texas native, sculptor Leo Villareal is recognized for his exceptional light installations in public spaces. His work is installed all over the world, however, most are located here in Texas, one of which includes the Buckyeball, the lighted sculpture in NorthPark Center’s CenterPark Garden. Villareal also designed the LED sculpture that illuminates the entrance to The Star, home to the Dallas Cowboys in Frisco. 

The two-day celebration commenced with a Stars of Texas brunch at the governor’s home in Austin and will include an awards show and a gala dinner. The event is co-chaired by Peter Holt and Guillermo Nicolas from San Antonio. 

Past recipients have included Eva Longoria, Jamie Foxx, Tommy Lee Jones, Dallas-based retailer Neiman Marcus, and the Nasher Foundation of Dallas. 

To view the full list of 2017 award recipients, visit the Texas Medal of Arts website

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    Nonprofit BUiLT is hosting the event to highlight the success and possibilities of Black tech talent in the region. “There is no talent pipeline problem,” says Peter Beasley, co-founder of the Blacks United in Leading Technology International. “Black tech talent is widely available, especially in North Texas.”

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