Matisse ends his run at SAMA, but he’s not going away quietly. Rather than let him just slink away, they're throwing a goodbye party.
“The evening is entitled 'au revoir, Matisse,' ” said Ruth Moreland, music director of the Copperleaf Quintet. "And there’ll be all kinds of wonderful things going on at the museum, and Copperleaf will be performing a concert of French salon music in the third floor exhibition gallery, which is where they have all of Matisse’s art books.”
The San Antonio Botanical Garden is about to open a new series of displays that take a pretty unusual tack. They've taken a common toy and repurposed it into a fun way of teaching children about nature.
“We’ll have a exhibit called Nature Connects. It’s art with Lego bricks," said Botanical Garden Executive Director Bob Brackman. And yes, he said Lego bricks.
“There’s over half a million Lego bricks making 27 art pieces throughout the Botanical Garden,” he explained.
It’s a festival where the visual arts are what really matters. It’s called Fotoseptiembre.
“Fotoseptiembre is an eclectic, inclusive, community-based festival, with curated components of international artists,” said Michael Mehl, the founder and director of the Fotoseptiembre USA International Photography Festival. And while pictures are its largest focus, there’s a wider angle to it.
British artist Martin Donlin finally got to visit his own installed piece in San Antonio. Donlin’s “Hippocrates,” an 18 ft. by 30 ft. wall-mounted glass sculpture, dominates a wall that’s the transition from the old Methodist Hospital, to the new Sky Tower.
“The old building finishes and the new one begins. So we’ve got him kind of looking backwards and forwards,” he said.
The installation is highly symbolic. If you look carefully, the wide view suggests the Rod of Asclepius, which was wielded by the ancient Greek god of healing and medicine.
Tagging is a persistent problem in San Antonio and District 1 Councilman Diego Bernal talked about how he’s trying to fight it.
“We take buildings that have been tagged significantly and we offer building owner an opportunity for a free mural,” he said.
Bernal said that their technique is pretty simple.
“We’ve got artists that we have in waiting and we get the artist and the building owner together," he said. "They come up with a concept and then we pay for the paint and scaffolding and those sorts of things.”
Luminaria, the city's annual celebration of arts, is changing. A move of location, date, and length of time have the event poised for something big. This year's scheduled November 7-8 dates will mark the seventh Luminaria. The move to the Tobin Center for the Performing Arts will also be new.
One of San Antonio’s big citywide celebrations has been getting an overhaul: It’s Luminaria, the light-centered, art-focused springtime celebration that has thrilled San Antonians at Hemisfair for the last several years. But not anymore.
“We like to move kind of with how the city is moving. And that area with the Tobin Center coming up, and the Southwest Center’s already there, just seemed like a really good palate to stage Luminaria this year," said Luminaria Board President Liz Tullis on moving the celebration from Hemisfair to River North.
Public art comes in many sizes, and is put in many places. One in particular fascinated me recently. You probably have seen it; it’s right in the middle of the road.
“The obelisk at Fulton and Blanco is actually part of an earlier bond program,” said city of San Antonio Public Arts Manager Jimmy LeFlore, talking about the 28-foot-tall, four-sided obelisk in the middle of the traffic roundabout. As LeFlore said, this public art aspired to an additional, unusual function.