May 21, 2024 - Culture

Childhood Latino memories inspire West Side San Antonio art

The kite is made from La Prensa, the first and oldest bilingual publication in Texas, which was established in San Antonio in 1913.  Across the street, the string from the toy is coiled around the top of the trompo as if it's just been spun in a game.

"El Papalote" (left) and "El Trompo" (right) sit at West Commerce and North Frio. Photos: Madalyn Mendoza/Axios

Two new works, "El Papalote" and "El Trompo," are joining San Antonio's public art canvas.

The latest: Legendary San Antonio artist Joe R. Villarreal — known for pieces like "Las Mañanitas de Mi Madre" and "La Familia" — recently completed the metal sculptures of a homemade kite and a top.

  • The new pieces are part of the city of San Antonio's public art collection.

State of play: They sit at the intersection of West Commerce and North Frio streets near Golden Star Cafe. The art is emblematic of growing up on the West Side as well as broader San Antonio history.

  • The kite is made from La Prensa, the first and oldest bilingual publication in Texas, which was established in San Antonio in 1913.
  • Across the street, the string from the toy is coiled around the top of the trompo as if it's just been spun in a game.

The big picture: Villarreal elevated simple staples of Latino memories in San Antonio by transforming them into art, sharing and celebrating them with the wider public.

  • "(Villarreal) hopes each work is a reminder of fun-filled childhood afternoons," the city's arts and culture department says in its description.

What's next: The city is planning a dedication ceremony for the art on June 25.

avatar

Get more local stories in your inbox with Axios San Antonio.

🌱

Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more

More San Antonio stories

San Antoniopostcard

Get a free daily digest of the most important news in your backyard with Axios San Antonio.

🌱

Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more