Arts » Arts Stories & Interviews

10 Things You Have to Do This Weekend


Thu 7/7
“Cordova’s Cabinet of Curiosities”

  • Courtesy of FL!GHT Gallery

As an independent curator, Ruben C. Cordova made a memorable statement in 2015 by staging a four-venue retrospective compiling nearly all 150 large-scale paintings in late Chicano artist Mel Casas’ epic Humanscapes series. Host to the earliest portion (dubbed “Sex and Cinema with Mel Casas, 1965-1968”), Justin Parr and Ed Saavedra’s FL!GHT Gallery now opens the doors to “Cordova’s Cabinet of Curiosities,” an exhibition and sale of works the art historian, photographer and educator collected over several decades. In addition to paintings, photographs, memorabilia and Día de los Muertos objects, the items up for grabs include “rare and not-so-rare” Mexican, U.S. and Belgian posters for such films as Blade Runner, Goldfinger and Creature from the Black Lagoon. Free, 7-10pm Thu, FL!GHT Gallery, 134 Blue Star, (210) 872-2586, — Bryan Rindfuss

Fri 7/8 - Sun 7/10
The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas

  • Photo by Siggi Ragnar

After staying in business for well over 50 years, when La Grange’s Chicken Ranch brothel was finally closed, it wasn’t relegated to be a footnote in local history. Instead, the ramshackle operation that once accepted chickens as payment for “services rendered” became immortalized in the musical The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas (and later, a movie starring Dolly Parton and Burt Reynolds). Fittingly, The Playhouse has brought the musical back to the stage a mere stone’s throw from the original locale, giving numbers like “The Aggie Song” and “The Bus from Amarillo” a little extra oomph. $12-$30, 8pm Fri-Sat, 3pm Sun, The Playhouse, 800 W. Ashby Pl., (210) 733-7258, — Kelly Merka Nelson

Fri 7/8 - Sun 7/10
“Carlos Mérida: Selections from the Permanent Collection”

  • Carlos Mérida, Untitled, 1925-1927

Occasionally, a museum dusts off some pieces from its permanent collection and brings them out of the archives. Such is the case with SAMA’s vibrant new Carlos Mérida exhibit, which runs through January. In the collection of nearly 30 works, folks can get to know the Guatemalan-born Mérida, who, despite his pioneering works — which first explored the symbol-rich history of Mayan culture and later embraced surrealism and geometric abstractionism — remains a lesser-known master than his friend and contemporary Diego Rivera. $5-$10, 10am-9pm Fri, 10am-5pm Sat-Sun, San Antonio Museum of Art, 200 W Jones Ave, (210) 978-8100, — James Courtney

  • Carlos Mérida, Puc and the Magic Spell, 1961

Sat 7/9

  • Carol Cunningham

Citing the discovery of a bear statue “fashioned some 15,000 to 20,000 years ago,” director Oana R. Ghiocel’s 2015 documentary The Bear Cult reminds viewers that “the lion was not always king.” Admittedly concerned by “ecosystems and the histories we are writing,” environmentally focused local artist Carol Cunningham charts a creative exploration into bears as a creature that inadvertently connects “powerful gods and celestial beings” with nighttime protectors and plush commodities. Focusing on 20th-century interpretations of the genus Ursus, Cunningham’s “BEARS BEARS BEARS” takes shape in a window-oriented installation encompassing audio and visual works enhanced with living pine trees. Free, 3-6pm Sat, Clamp Light Artist Studios and Gallery, 1704 Blanco Road, Suite 104, (620) 218-1568,
— BR

Sat 7/9

Beyond understanding what it means to be transgender and how it affects one’s life, trans awareness entails acceptance, openness, and advocacy. In partnership with the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) 22198 “Orgullo de San Antonio” and the Transgender Education Network of Texas, the Esperanza screens Peruvian filmmaker Dante Alencastre’s Transvisible, a documentary chronicling the struggles of trans Latina activist Bamby Salcedo, founder and president of East L.A.’s [email protected] Coalition. Following the screening, local trans activist Lauryn Farris moderates a panel discussion between Antonia Padilla, Eric LaRue and Salcedo herself. $5, 7pm Sat, Esperanza Peace and Justice Center, 922 San Pedro Ave., parking available in lots 21, 28 and 29 at San Antonio College, (210) 228-0201, — JC

Sat 7/9
hree Hail Marys, Two Our Fathers”

  • Lisette Chavez

Picking up in the sacred/profane space occupied by her MFA thesis exhibition at the University of Arizona Museum of Art, artist and printmaker Lisette Chavez’s latest plumbs the depths of the religious psyche at precisely the spot where universal sanctity meets personal neurosis. Combining objects, icons, trinkets and other curiosities to create a shrine-like space, Chavez states that her intention is to “convey the unease between purity, seduction and evil.” From blinged-out religious relics to ritualistic drawings, her “Three Hail Marys, Two Our Fathers” calls us to reimagine our spiritual landscaping. Free, 7-10pm Sat, Provenance Gallery, 1906 S. Flores St., (210) 216-8362, — JC

Sat 7/9

  • Enrique Martinez

In the world of Enrique Martinez’s vivid paintings and drawings, our contemporary fears, confusions, contradictions and obsessions are mutated into Burroughsian nightmares that seem to seethe and squirm before our eyes. In works that are bursting with radical, often grotesque, always-colorful images, Martinez tinkers with a “universe in which all victories are pyrrhic” and our tangled mess of a society knows no redress and expects no redemption. With his solo show “Cascarones,” Martinez strives to depict the way in which our basest instincts seem to have run amok with our political, cultural and social existences. Free, 7-10pm Sat, Studio Fantomas, 1906 S. Flores St., (210) 978-6663, — JC

Sun 7/10
Imitation of Life


Directed with gorgeous lushness by Douglas Sirk, Imitation of Life opens with two widows meeting on a beach and deciding to combine households. While Lora (Lana Turner) brings home the bacon with her Broadway career, Annie (Juanita Moore) stays home with their two daughters. In other words, it’s a mirror of conventional marriage, except between two women — one white, one black. As the latter half explores the crisis of the black daughter (Susan Kohner) who can pass for white, the iconic film becomes one of cinema’s great tearjerkers — both a cultural touchstone and a moving portrait of 1950s America. With Sandra Dee, John Gavin and a cameo by Mahalia Jackson, the 1959 classic screens at the McNay as part of the Beach & Boardwalk Film Series, a cinematic complement to the exhibition “Coney Island: Visions of an American Dreamland, 1861-2008.” $15-$20, 2pm Sun, McNay Art Museum, 6000 N. New Braunfels Ave., (210) 824-5368,
— Michael Barrett

Sun 7/10
Welcome to Night Vale

  • Welcome to Night Vale

The brainchild of writers/creators Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor, the cultish podcast Welcome to Night Vale plays out in bizarre news briefs announced by hypnotic radio host Cecil Palmer (played by Cecil Baldwin) from an imaginary desert town riddled with supernatural occurrences. With its bizarre blend of angels, dragons, hooded figures and “Sheriff’s Secret Police,” the twice-monthly program routinely inspires comparisons to the work of horror fiction hero H.P. Lovecraft — not to mention such unlikely scenarios as “A Prairie Home Companion, as narrated by Rod Serling” (The Awl) and “what might occur if Stephen King or David Lynch was a guest producer at your local public radio station” (The New York Times). Now anthologized in two books (Mostly Void, Partially Stars and The Great Glowing Coils of the Universe), Night Vale returns to the Alamo City for a live presentation of Ghost Stories, a new show featuring a score by electronic composer Disparition (aka Jon Bernstein) and live musical accompaniment from genre-bucking folk rocker Erin McKeown. $25-$30, 7pm Sun, Aztec Theatre, 104 N. St. Mary’s St., (210) 812-4355, — BR

  • Welcome to Night Vale
Sun 7/10
Jim Gaffigan

  • Courtesy of Jim Gaffigan

Not 30 seconds after he’s taken the stage in his 2012 special Mr. Universe, stand-up Jim Gaffigan has already gotten an applause break. “Oh, he’s doing that voice already,” Gaffigan says, in reference to his second-most famous gag (after, of course, the thing about the Hot Pockets) — it’s the high-pitched internal monologue of an imaginary audience member, confused by the act to the point of being concerned for Gaffigan’s well-being. Ironically, Gaffigan’s act, largely food-centric observational comedy, is as accessible as can be. Famously family-friendly (his writing partner is also his wife and mother of his five children), Gaffigan is also an old-school laughs-per-minute comic with a jazz drummer’s sense of timing and a TV show on which he plays a fictionalized version of himself. Like Seinfeld without the mean streak. $49.75-$59.75, 7pm & 9:30pm Sun, The Majestic Theatre, 224 E. Houston St., (210) 226-3333, — Jeremy Martin

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