Dallas, Texas
5501 Columbia AvenueDallas, TX 75214
phone: 214-824-3377
fax: 214-824-3378
web: www.5501.com

Museum Type(s)



Kaleta Doolin
Alan Govenar

5501 Columbia Art Center; Contemporary Culture; Documentary Arts in Dallas, TX is one of more than 15,400 museums in the MuseumsUSA directory. Find an exciting museum to visit where you live or vacation today.


5501 Columbia Art Center is operated by two non-profit organizations. Contemporary Culture and Documentary Arts, and now occupies five properties, including an arts education building, a digital media production facility, and the Texas African American Photography Archive, the Reiger House for artist residencies, and a 1918 Firehouse listed in the National Historic Register, containing offices, galleries and studios. Together, the 5001 Columbia Art Center properties fulfill a mission to bring contemporary art and cultureal awareness into its East Dallas neighborhood. The Center serves a diverse population through local programs which have national support and international significance. 5501 Columbia Art Center, located in East Dallas in a 1918 landmark building, formerly Fire Station No. 16, received a 1993 American Institute of Architects Citation Award for its adaptation to its current community service role.

5501 Columbia Art Center is a multi-use facility: Gallery space with a moveable wall system for temporary and touring exhibitions, Gallery for book arts installations, Studios for sculpture and neighborhood art workshops, Offices for Contemporary Culture and Documentary Arts ,All-purpose room for educational programs, Archive African-American photography in Texas. Media production services (Hi-8mm video, Beta SP, and 16mm film), Computer-based non-linear editing, Digital audio recording and mastering. Secured parking.

Documentary Arts and Contemporary Culture are non-profit organizations supported through private contributions and by the City of Dallas Office of Cultural Affairs, Texas Commission on the Arts, National Endowment for the Arts, Corporation for Public Broadcasting, Ann Fell Productions, Frito-Lay, Inc., Light Impressions Corporation, Homeland Foundation, National Historical National Historical Publication & Records Commission, Summerlee Foundation, Florence Gould Foundation, and Meadows Foundation.

Documentary Arts was founded in 1985 by Alan Govenar as a non-profit corporation to broaden public knowledge and appreciation of the arts of different cultures in all media. Programs developed by Documentary Arts include the research and production of film, video, and radio features on folklore and folklife, as well as a series of audio cassettes on ethnic music.

Documentary Arts also sponsors a Folk Artists in Schools program and employs a Folk Arts Coordinator to administer the Dallas Folk Festival, curate touring exhibitions, and conduct fieldwork around the state.

documentary Arts sponsors the Texas African American photography archive, which contains a 45,000 plus image research collection, exhibition space and public event facility. The archive opened in 1995 and employs an archivist and is open for tours and research. Collections are maintained ina temperature and humidity controlled vault.

Contemporary Culture was founded in 1990 by Kaleta Doolin to present culturally diverse public programs, including the visual, media, literary, and performing arts. Its purpose is to explore and interpret the creative process through innovative contemporary exhibitions, conferences, workshops, performances and film/video productions.

Artifact Collections

1. Portraits of Community: African American Photography in Texas, 1870-1994. (2). Folk Art : Wood carvings by Texas folk artists,Tattoo design sheets and associated artifacts and photographs

Research Collections

Texas African American Photography Collection and Archive; 45,000 photographic items, 1870s to present; internships available; open to researchers and the general public by appointment. Guide and microfiche set of collections are also available

Educational Programs

Gallery and archive tours; folk artists in schools; residencies and workshop/performances coordinated by Alan Govenar and Jan Rosenberg; Art in the Neighborhood; workshops, exhibitions, and in-school programs coordinated by Kaleta Doolin.


Periodic publications : 1. Flash From the Past: Classic American Tattoo Designs 1890-1965, Introduction by Alan Govenar (Honolulu, HI: Hardy Marks Publications) 1994.: 2. Govenar, Alan, The Early Years of Rhythm & Blues: The Photography of Benny Joseph (Houston, Texas: Rice University Press) 1991. "Protraits of Community: African American Photography in Texas" Austin, Texas State Historical Assn. 1996; " Deep Ellum and Central Track" Denton, Texas; UNT Press, 1998.

Museum Events
This information, including business hours, addresses and contact information is provided for general reference purposes only. No representation is made or warranty is given as to its content or the reliability thereof. User assumes all risk of use. Stories USA, Inc. and its content suppliers assume no responsibility for any loss or delay resulting from such use. Please call ahead to verify the dates, the location and directions.


Small Museum Association 2023 Conference

February 19 - 21, 2024

Richmond, Virginia

Virginia Association of Museum's 2024 Annual Conference!

March 9 - 12, 2024

Virginia Beach, Virginia

2024 California Association of Museums Conference

March 10 - 14, 2024

Long Beach, California

2024 Colorado-Wyoming ANNUAL MEETING

May 1 - 4, 2024

Worland, Wyoming

West Virginia Association of Museums 2024 Conference

June 6 - 8, 2024

Shepherdstown, West Virginia


Museum Vendors

03/07 Stories USA, Inc.

Ellicott City, Maryland

Museum Associations

03/07 Florida Association of Museums

Tallahassee, Florida

03/07 Virginia Association of Museums

Richmond, Virginia

03/07 West Virginia Association of Museums

Charleston, West Virginia

03/07 Colorado-Wyoming Association of Museums

Denver, Colorado

03/07 California Association of Museums

Santa Cruz, California