Texas pride has burned white-hot since Davy Crockett’s time, but until now there has never been one central place to contain all that passion. On April 21 the Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum, named for a late lieutenant governor who pushed for the project, opens its doors in Austin. The three-story pink granite structure holds relics of the state displayed in a high-tech setting that includes a clutch of theaters. Beyond the 3-D IMAX installation we’ve come to expect in such places, there is the Revolution Theater, built to resemble the Alamo the day after the battle. In the Texas Spirit Theater, where Sam Houston narrates a film called The Star of Destiny , the seats shake when a gusher shoots from an oil derrick and when a Saturn V lifts off, carrying astronauts to the moon. Texas State History Museum: 512-936-8746. Web site:
The Smithsonian Institution’s numerous museums are constantly mounting exhibits—more than 20 this spring alone. The complete schedule can be found at newsdesk.si.edu. Most intriguing, perhaps, is an exhibit scheduled to open April 6 at the National Museum of American History, in Washington: “Accounting for Taste: The Paint-by-Number Phenomenon of the 1950s,” which will include canvases by (among others) the season’s most unlikely pair of artists: Andy Warhol and Dwight D. Eisenhower.