Artists used mixed media to create contemporary pieces.
By Solomon A. Wilson
March is National Contemporary Art Month, and the San Antonio College Art Guild did not miss its opportunity to be a part of it.
The guild hosted an open reception for “Contemporary Textures,” which combined artists’ work and interior tiles for a unique viewing experience March 14 at Travis Tile Design Center. The event included 12 artists who are recent graduates or current students of this college.
The Art Guild is a student club with 10 members this semester. They participate in fundraising with their art at local events such as the King William Fair.
“They sometimes can receive job offers during the events,” said Alfonso Cantu, guild director and art professor.
Members must be enrolled in six credit hours in the visual arts program, maintain a C average and attend meetings.
As artists and buyers exchanged business cards and wine was poured, guests arrived in groups, intrigued by the combination of acrylic paints and tiles. They took pictures and posed questions to the artists about their pieces.
Many of the pieces were for sale.
Dante Di’Pasquale, a recent liberal arts graduate of this college, sold his painting “Inquiry of Inveteracy,” which was inspired by his deep love for outer space. The painting included two lonely space walkers in the dark underneath a multicolored acrylic galaxy.
“When I hear what it means to them and what they get from it, that to me is worth more than just selling it,” Di’Pasquale said with excitement as passers-by shook his hand, congratulating him on his achievement.
Cantu, the event’s coordinator, said he was unsure how many people would attend, but he took a chance.
“We just jumped on the opportunity to do the event, and we want to do more,” Cantu said.
“The turnout was great — we even got to take pictures next to these awesome paintings,” said Mary Vasquez, nursing freshman at this college.
Wanting his students to keep building their portfolio, Cantu asked them to submit works of art for the event.
He then handpicked from the submissions and chose 12 artists who qualified for the event. The art was paired with certain tiles, allowing the guests to walk through a maze of different textured tiles and stones used for interior design while viewing custom paintings that complement each other.
The largest piece in the gallery belonged to Eric Acuna, a liberal arts graduate of this college, whose work “Salvation” incorporated oils, fabrics and newspaper clippings that came together to represent what he called “survival.”
“I slept with this, I ate with this, I lived with this and every day a different meaning came to me,” Acuna said of the painting.
He said it originally started as a picture of the American flag but with time and inspiration turned into a detailed symbolic piece showing the fight that it takes to survive in America.
Acuna said he takes whatever life throws at him and intertwines that into his work for others to interpret themselves.
“Art is a universal language,” Acuna said as people read the words from news clippings that peeked from behind the acrylic paint.
For more about Art Guild events, email Cantu at firstname.lastname@example.org or call visual arts at 210-486-0255.