Well, I owe myself five dollars. I had bet against Museo Alameda opening another show. But last Wednesday we received a newsletter announcing the new exhibition, “Día de los Muertos: Mexican Tradition,” on view November 2 through December 3. The notice promised papel picado works by local artist Kathleen Trenchard, and four commemorative altares: one for Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla, father of the Mexican revolution; another for General Manuel González, President of Mexico between Porfirio Diaz’s two terms; and one for Frida Kahlo. A fourth remembers “Distinguished Mexican-American community members of San Antonio.” Wondering who they might be, Artifacts visited the Museo to find out. Next to several cut paper pieces, was the SA altar commemorating educator Moises Espino Del Castillo, writer Carlos Freymann, painter Alberto Mijangos, singer Rosita Fernandez, and Manny Castillo, co-founder of San Anto Cultural Arts. Except for Castillo, who was born in SA, all the other remembered luminaries who passed in the last decade were born in Mexico. Where is mention of Texas-born accordion genius Esteban “Steve” Jordan? What about Chicana music idol Lydia Mendoza? Not to mention writer Angela de Hoyos, “Chicano bluesman” Randy Garibay, “First Lady of Chicano film” Josie Faz, or artist Chuck Ramirez, who passed a year ago last week?
There was a fifth untitled altar, too: a sparse assortment of objects placed below a poster for “Jesse Treviño: Mi Vida,” the retrospective of the hometown artist that filled the Museo two years ago. Jesse is still alive, but is this perhaps the altar in memory of past major shows by local artists, departed now forever? Coming up next, “Tequila, The Spirit of Mexico.”
Good thing artists from SA get around.
San Antonio printmaker Cruz Ortiz and Trinity University instructor Randy Wallace are exhibiting with Austin-based Esteban Peralta in “RAIN,” on view at 2103 Chestnut Avenue in Austin during the East Austin Studio Tour, November 12–20. Ortiz’s work has appeared in his 2005 Artpace residency and in “Phantom Sightings: Art After the Chicano Movement,” curated by the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. He’s also shown at the international art fair ARCO in Madrid, Spain, and at The Louvre in Paris. Wallace received his MFA in sculpture from UTSA, and has also exhibited at Artpace. He currently teaches at Trinity Univerisity. Peralta is an artist, writer, and social activist. He lives and works in Austin. For more info, and to learn about other exhibits during the studio tour, go to eastaustinstudiotour.com