The Amon Carter is one of America's most beloved art institutions, and one of my personal favorites for so many reasons. The collection is one that surprises every time, as they bring out masterpiece after masterpiece to fill the Philip Johnson museum, that dominates the western tip of the Cultural District. While often known for its unrivaled western collection of Frederic Remington and Charlie Russell, it's the O'Keefes, Bierstadts, Richard Avedons and Stuart Davis' that make me stop and stare time and again.

Of course, the Carter's reputation for excellence, lauded American collection and impressive research portfolio is what brought me to Fort Worth over 13 years ago. I was lucky enough to land a job there and work with the collection everyday. Flash forward and now I'm just another art lover and mom looking for ways to keep cool with the kids and stay up to date on all of the amazing cultural amenities that we are fortunate to have in Fort Worth.

American Vanguards is a summer blockbuster worth devoting an afternoon to.  The show focuses on the development of early twentieth century modernism and features over sixty artworks by blockbuster names such as Stuart Davis, John Graham and Willem de Kooning.  Without writing a dissertation, suffice it to say that the show is filled with context and information about this dynamic period.  Most importantly, the art is transcendent and tells its own story about interconnected ness and pioneering.  I love seeing these gorgeous artworks reinvent this gallery space, which feels fresh and alive with color and movement.  The exhibition closes on August 19, which gives you 30 days to see it before it leaves!

If you think the exhibition might be too involved for your kids, then get a sitter and take your friend or spouse and afterwards grab lunch at the famous Kimbell restaurant or go see the amazing chef Dena Petersen at the Modern.  Save the day with your kids for a story time at the Carter, Wednesdays at 10:30 through July 11. And then lighten up with a trek over to the Museum of Science and History before Grossology leaves us.

Remember that the Amon Carter is absolutely, completely, totally and unapologetically FREE. While this is great news, it sometimes means that the general public might overlook it in their quest for the newest exhibitions that charge a fee for entrance. Don't be fooled.  The exhibitions that are mounted at the Carter and other local free museums and galleries are of the best quality and we are just LUCKY to have endowed museums that are able stay open for the use of anyone who would like to expand their view of the world.

Don't let American Vanguards, Amon Carter, the Cultural District and the arts offerings throughout Fort Worth pass you by. Visitors travel the world to come and see our museums and the exhibitions we mount; at the Fort Worth CVB, we talk to them every day, from Australia to Japan, Mexico, the UK and everywhere in between.  The City of Cowboys and Culture can't wait to welcome you!