Camp Out 2014: Creative Summertime Fun


Photo courtesy Southwest School of Art.

It’s summertime in San Antonio. What will your kids be up to? If you haven’t formulated a plan, you’ll be glad to know that there are a number of organizations that do have a plan. And! There is still time left to sign up.

My suggestion? Keep the kids busy and stimulated with summer arts camps. There are quite a few good options here in town including some great performing arts opportunities. A great place to start is with family memberships to our local museums. Most offer family enjoyment options year around, with memberships running $65 – $85 annually. These memberships not only support the good works of the institutions, but also connect you to a stream of information, freebies, and discounts. The access to professional programming aimed at educating and stimulating your child will have payoffs extending well beyond the conundrum of what to do with bored kiddos, daycare, or just some good old-fashioned quiet time for the adults.

According to studies commissioned by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), young people exposed to arts education have better outcomes across the board. They make better grades, are more civically engaged, and ultimately have higher career goals for themselves. This study focused on “at risk youth,” and I say all of our youth are “at risk” these days. Hours in front of screens, human “interaction” focused in the virtual world, increasing childhood obesity. These are issues that every parent should be concerned with.

So, we’ve done a little homework for you. Here is a collection of links to summer programs in San Antonio with a focus on the arts. Some are already starting. Most of these break up the classes or “camps” into week-long segments so you can pick and choose a schedule that works for your family and pocketbook. Art will make a difference in your child’s life. And furthermore, it’s just plain fun. Isn’t that what being a kid should be all about?

By no means is this a complete list. However, it is a short list of significant “cultural engines” in our city to begin with. Also, check the website at the San Antonio Department for Culture & Creative Development (DCCD).

Go forth! Be creative! Stay cool!


Tami Kegley and Page Graham power and are regular contributors to The Rivard Report.

Tami is also a regular contributor to KLRN ARTS on Friday evenings at 8:30 and Sunday afternoons at 2:00.



SAMA Members’ Strong Response to Recent Staff Changes


Trey Todd (left) and Tom Greenwell (center) and at the SAMA Contemporaries tour of the Kanyusik collection, September 23, 2013.

Recent staff changes at San Antonio Museum of Art, namely the elimination of the position of Assistant Curator of Latin American Art, Nancy Fullerton, and the sudden resignation of Contemporary Curator David S. Rubin, came as a complete surprise to arts community. Our recent article focused on the outpouring of praise and support for them, but there have been a number of off-the-record remarks expressing discontent about this situation.

However, two well-respected SAMA members, Tom Greenwell and Trey Todd, have decided to go public with their displeasure.

Continue reading

S.A. Art Community Responds to David Rubin’s Resignation

IMG_0519 (1024x683)

David Rubin (R) talks to Alejandro Padilla at the opening party for the On and Off Fredericksburg Road Studio Tour on February 21, 2014. Photo by Page Graham.

According to a report in the San Antonio Express-News also widely circulated on social media, David Rubin, The Brown Foundation Curator of Contemporary Art at the San Antonio Museum of Art (SAMA) submitted his resignation on Tuesday, February 24, 2014. The resignation is effective immediately.

ArtBlogSA reached out to SAMA for comment and this statement was released :

“David has contributed so much to this museum, he goes with our great gratitude,” said Katie Luber, the Kelso Director at the museum. “We wish him well in all of his future endeavors and we look forward to seeing what he does next within the field of contemporary art.”

Prior to working at the San Antonio Museum of Art, Rubin was the Curator of Visual Arts at the Contemporary Arts Center, New Orleans from 2000-2006. He has also held positions at the Phoenix Art Museum, Cleveland Center for Contemporary Art (now MOCA Cleveland), Freedman Gallery, Albright College, San Francisco Art Institute, Galleries of the Claremont Colleges, and Scripps College. He holds an M.A. in Art History from Harvard University.

Our initial response was shock. For us here at ArtBlogSA, Rubin had very much become the face of SAMA. Always in motion, always creating opportunities for the SAMA Contemporary Group to interact with each other here in San Antonio, across the U.S. and abroad. Collectors, gallerists, artists, academics, aficionados, neophytes, rich and poor, young and old — all mixed and mingled effortlessly. Rubin led the way with his uncanny ability to make often esoteric subject matter accessible and meaningful to those willing to show up for his frequent and popular talks.

Continue reading

SOLI @ 20: Simply Spectacular


SOLI Ensemble takes a bow during a lengthy standing ovation at Gallery Nord.

PAST, the opening of SOLI Chamber Ensemble‘s 20th anniversary season, was our first adventure with the group – and definitely not the last. The event was hosted by Carina and Hans Gors at their beautiful contemporary art space, Gallery Nord, and it was an evening to remember.  An intimate group of about 50 enjoyed a presentation of world-class proportions in a warm and friendly atmosphere. The night began with a casual discussion of the music to be presented by the quartet. No quotes here, but let us just say that we have rarely encountered such a verbose group of artists. And this was a refreshing treat. It allowed us an eloquent glimpse of personality and passion prior to the performance.

Continue reading

Jazz’SAlive @ 30: Dead Man Walking

As a newcomer to San Antonio, this was Tami’s first experience with Jazz’SAlive, the city’s homage to the art form held annually in Travis Park. And yes, we are jazz fans — Sunday brunch CANNOT commence without Henry Brun on KRTU. Back in 1985, when Page first arrived in town fresh from Canada, his first stop was at Jazz’SAlive. The incomparable Dave Brubeck was playing on the old, small Parks Department mobile stage, and Page’s buddy Charlie Mullins was running tech and sound that year. Mullins — gone too soon — went on to work as Road Manager for another legend, Steve Earle. Well, Page ended up working the show that night some 30-odd years ago. That’s just the way it rolls. Subsequently, in addition to being a local television director, Page went on to do sound for SA’s own Earfood Orchestra for a number of years.


Courtesy S.A. Parks Foundation — Artwork by Robert Tatum

Tami’s deep experience as a visual artist took her to many of the best festivals in the country, notably The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival. She has worked as a nonprofit arts administrator and has had the “joy” of working with teams to put these types of festivals together. So… we were really looking forward to having a great time when we rode down to soak up some good music and sunshine on Sunday afternoon. The experience in a word: Disappointing.

In the spirit of constructive criticism, let’s take a look at all the problems we encountered, and then offer up some solutions…

Continue reading

Summer Concert Series: Best Kept Secret in Southtown


Mission City Hot Rhythm Cats

Music lovers know. San Antonio is a great town for music. One of the best kept secrets of the summer outdoor concert season is this series hosted by the King William Association on the cool, lush banks of the San Antonio River fronting the offices at the San Antonio River Authority, 100 E. Guenther Street.

Since the fund’s inception in 2000, over $300,000 in grants and scholarships have been awarded by this outstanding community organization. These concerts are but one of the many ways that the King William Association gives back to the people of San Antonio. Everyone is invited to this free event.

This intimate, leafy-green venue is perfect on a late Sunday afternoon. Shady, and usually with a cool breeze, concert-goers bring picnic baskets to share a light repast and a cool drink with friends and family, young and old. Since May, audiences have enjoyed local favorites Katchie Cartwright, Henry Brun, The Mission City Hot Rhythm Cats, and Olivia Chacon Flamenco Dancers. Beginning at 6:30, the concerts are about an hour long, perhaps a bit more allowing for the inevitable encores. A perfect and relaxing finish to any long weekend.


Olivia Chacon Flamenco Dancers

There are two more fantastic opportunities to get in on the fun this summer. On July 7, the Austin Piazzolla Quintet will perform. Described as “tango at its best,” this group plays in the Nuevo Tango tradition, specializing in the works of great Argentine Composer, Astor Piazzolla. The season comes to a close on July 21, with Daniel Monserrat. With more Tango and Salsa, this Argentinian has a vibrant local following, promising to end the 2013 season with a flourish!

Click here to view more photos from the flamenco concert.
Click here to view more photos from the jazz concert.