Too darn hot

Local painters and mentors Reggie Rowe and Alberto Mijangos passed away within days of each other this month, and we were yanked abruptly from our steamy spring reverie and deposited momentarily in last November’s early gray chill, when playwright Sterling Houston left us for good just hours behind the artist Mister Danny Geisler. A costly year for the arts in San Antonio, but these visionaries didn’t leave us out of their wills. Like Hap Veltman, Bernard Lifshutz, and other cultural leaders before them, each has left us an institution, accomplished students, inspired acolytes (or all three) to remember them by, to continue to enrich our fecund arts scene.

We had originally planned to kick off our CAM coverage with a big preview story, but it seems appropriate to begin instead with a nod to Rowe and Mijangos, contributed by Diana Roberts, who knows their work and local impact well, on page 15. You’ll find our critics’ notes on this week’s openings below (thanks to Gilbert Garcia for weighing in on Buttercup’s Grackle Mundys). Beginning next week, look for in-depth, opinionated CAM coverage, including show previews and reviews, profiles, and more. You’ll also find a complete listing of CAM events in our calendar, which begins on page 33. See you at the galleries.

— Elaine Wolff


Jerry Cabrera: Cape
Jun 27-Sep 2
Reception: 2-4pm Jul 7
Museo Alameda
101 S. Santa Rosa

Recent UTSA graduate Jerry Cabrera has experimented with sugary color fields and the record of motion in a minimalist vein. This series of paintings, created in part for his MFA thesis show, removes the cape from the bullfighter and ring just as MAS extracts culture from context — should make for a vibrant fit.


Rhonda Kuhlman: Did you just see what I saw?
Jun 28-Jul 22
Receptions: 6-9pm Jun 28, 6-9pm Jul 6,
6-9pm Jul 28
Cactus Bra
106C Blue Star

The way the show’s title echoes Tweety Bird hints at this meticulous artist’s playful (sometimes wickedly so) nature. The PR promises new drawings and an installation, and judging by the image seen here, fans of Kuhlman’s recent show at Unit B — samples from a quilting bee where reclaimed trash substituted for fabric scraps — will be satiated. Kuhlman plans to build on the original drawings during the month, adding sculptural elements including a mirrored beanstalk that, like the combo of magic fairy-tale elements it represents, may show the viewer an enduring facet of human nature.


Blue Star 22: Michele Monseau, Gone Again II
Jun 28-Aug 19
Reception: 6-9pm Jun 28
Blue Star Contemporary Art Center
116 Blue Star

For only the second time in its history, Blue Star’s annual local retrospective will be dedicated to the work of one artist. Artlies editor Anjali Gupta curates Gone Again II, Michele Monseau’s continued exploration of themes she first presented at Cactus Bra in 2003. “For me, this is the physical manifestation of lightness and weight,” Monseau told critic Catherine Walworth for an Artlies review of that show. “The grounding, heavy forces of history and time juxtaposed with the lightness of being able to shed one’s identity in a foreign locale.” The artist promises that the large gallery space, which sometimes overwhelms shows, will be filled with work.


Jason Jay Stevens: Eight Gestures in Airborne Rope + embellishments
Jun 28-Jul 29
Reception: 6-9pm Jun 28
Blue Star Contemporary Art Center
116 Blue Star

Stevens is best-known locally for his audio artistry as one half of Potter-Belmar Labs, the experimental-cinema duo that has staged screenings on the walls of the downtown library, a riverside pocket park, and other unexpected venues, but this one-man installation in Blue Star’s Gallery Four gives him a chance to show off his solo work: here eight takes on movement and ephemeral sculpture with the sky as canvas.


River Art Group
Jul 1-31
River Art Group Gallery
418 Villita, Ste. 1400

The River Art Group is a reliable source of beautifully executed, standard fine art in a contemporary vein. You can find portraits, landscapes, Southwestern abstracts, and jewelry in the charming gallery shop located in historic La Villita.


Grackle Mundy
8-11pm Mon, Jul 2-30
“Some weird venues”

One of Buttercup’s great virtues is that they view musical performances as potential art happenings. Over the years, their Grackle Mundy events have seen them acoustically serenading audiences on a parade float, playing for two listeners at a time, and playing on one floor while their audience watched them on monitors on a different floor. By this point, Grackle Mundy has become synonymous with San Antonio performance art, and the band’s series of CAM shows should find them stretching their considerable imaginations to create a welcome sense of disorientation.