Best In Dallas: Local Advocate And Entrepreneur Kelly Cornell Loves the Arts

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We love a list and a Best In Dallas list is even better! Local arts advocate and entrepreneur Kelly Cornell is here to share her love for all things local.

Kelly Cornell, a young up-and-comer in our creative scene, is the Director of the Dallas Art Fair. The ambitious entrepreneur also owns her own small business, Desert Hide, a recently launched fashion line featuring a collection of luxury handbags handcrafted by her and co-collaborator Jack Cornell. Kelly keeps herself busy in the arts community as Programming Chair for the Dallas Museum of Art’s Junior Associate Program and contributing member of the Contemporaries at the Dallas Contemporary. With a B.F.A in Studio Arts and a Minor in Arts Management and Arts Entrepreneurship from SMU, the young arts advocate is on the fast track to taking over Dallas, one creative project at a time! We sat down with Kelly to hear all about her favorite aspects of the city she loves so much, Dallas. Read on for her Best in Dallas list!

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Foodie Favorite: Nova

Of the North Oak Cliff gastropub, Kelly told us, “I love Nova! They have the best cocktails and the chicken fried pork loin cures anything and everything.” With its eclectic, chef-driven menu, Nova wows with nightly chef features and a full bar. The neighborhood restaurant screams Oak Cliff, and that’s why it’s a favorite of our culture queen.

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Artistic Addiction: Dallas Art Fair

Kelly’s favorite artistic addiction is no secret. As director of the Fair, she lives for the yearly event and its artistic offerings from across the world. Located at Fashion Industry Gallery (f.i.g.), the Fair features the best in painting, sculpture, works on paper, photography, video and installation by modern and contemporary artists this Thursday through Sunday. This year’s event adds a twist! The first-ever free music programming on the f.i.g. lawn from 4 to 7 p.m. this Friday.

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Bargain Hunter: Local Estate Sales

“I am an estate sale junkie!” she told us of her bargain hunting obsession. “I physically cannot drive past a sign without stopping.” Dallas has estate sales across the city, mostly on the weekends. Our recommendation is to bring cash, shop early and join local estate sale email lists to hear about the best collections first.

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On The Move: Cedar Hill State Park

Kelly loves this urban oasis, which is close to the city yet rugged with its limestone hills and prairie pockets. “I love going to Cedar Hill State Park on the weekends and hiking the trails with our dogs,” the puppy lover tells us. “It is a short drive from Downtown and an incredible nature escape to take a break from the city.”

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Brain Candy: Dallas Contemporary

The not-for-profit charity and non-collecting art museum features regional, national and international artists. “The Contemporaries group at Dallas Contemporary is the best group to be a part of,” Kelly told us of her creative club. “They have fun and interesting programming year round and it is a great way to be involved with the museum.”

Image 1 courtesy of Kelly Cornell. Image 2 courtesy of Rip & Tan. Image 3 courtesy of Deborah Colton Gallery. Image 4 courtesy of Done Deal Estate Sales. Image 5 courtesy of Texas Parks & Wildlife. Image 6 courtesy of Dallas Contemporary.

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