"A Trusted Companion" by Mark Maggiori. Oil on linen. Image Courtesy of the Briscoe Museum.

The Briscoe Western Art Museum is gearing up for its 15th Annual Night of Artists Art Sale and Exhibition weekend, which will feature 71 of the country’s most prominent Western artists and showcase 277 painting, sculpture, and mixed media works.

The Night of Artists opening weekend will kick off on Friday, April 1 with an artist reception and exhibition preview from 5:30-8:30 p.m. Tickets are $125 and include beer, wine, cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, an exhibition preview, a guarantee to purchase opportunity, and access to the Briscoe Museum gallery.

On Saturday, April 2 the Briscoe will host the Night of Artists art sale, dinner and awards event from 5:30-10:30 p.m. Tickets are $200 and include art sale participation and bid book, beer, wine, cocktails, a buffet dinner, and live entertainment provided by Mariachi Azteca, who will open the event, and country artist Chris Salinas.

Both events will be held at the Briscoe’s Jack Guenther Pavilion, 210 W. Market St. For a full, detailed program of events click here. To purchase tickets, click here, or call 210-299-4499 for more information.

Tickets will also be available for on-site purchase on Friday and Saturday evening. Briscoe members will receive a $25 discount off the first two tickets purchased.

Once the ticketed events conclude, the Western art exhibition will be free with museum admission and open to the public during regular museum hours from Sunday, April 3 to Sunday, May 15. All unsold art will be available for purchase.

Sharon Garcia, Briscoe marketing and communications manager, elaborated on the special nature of the event.“We are one of the top four Western art shows on a national scale,” she said. “These artists are considered the best of the genre.”

Every year a special committee sends out invitations to select artists, asking them to participate in the exhibition. This year’s nationally recognized artists include Billy Schenck, T.D. Kelsey, Cliff Cavin, Bill Nebeker, Sandy Scott, Martin Grelle, and Kim Wiggins. Local San Antonio artists such as Carolyn Korbell Carrington and married couple John Moyers and Terri Kelly Moyers will also be in attendance.

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The funds garnered from past Night of Artists weekends, Garcia said, made it possible to officially open the doors of the Briscoe back in October 2013.

“It’s our main fundraiser,” she said. “A portion of the proceeds still goes to operations, programs, and initiatives for the Briscoe.”

The April 2 event will feature cash prizes for all award-winning artists, as well as the presentation of the Artists’ Choice Award and Museum Purchase Award. The winner of the Artists’ Choice Award will be determined by participating artists who will vote on the work of their fellow art contemporaries.

As for the Museum Purchase Award, a special committee will select one winning piece of art to be purchased by the Briscoe. This award is an opportunity for the Museum to continue to build its collection and acquire some contemporary work by top Western artists, Garcia said.

Jessica Elliot, Briscoe board chair, mentioned that almost all of the Cowboy Artists of America will be participating in this year’s show.

The signature event will not only feature up-and-coming artists as well as local artists, but also individuals who hail from many other parts of the world.

“We have Kent Ullberg who is Swedish, Mark Maggiori who is French, Xiang Zhang who is from China, and even a couple of Australian artists,” Elliot said.

The fact that the museum is located downtown on the River Walk has made the event an artist favorite, Elliot added.

“It’s pretty neat that the great American West has inspired these artists from all over the world to actually uproot their lives and move here to completely engulf themselves in the culture,” she said. “It’s pretty neat to see their interpretation of our history.”


*Top image: “A Trusted Companion” by Mark Maggiori. Oil on linen. Image Courtesy of the Briscoe Museum.

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Rocío Guenther

Rocío Guenther worked as a bilingual reporter and editorial assistant for the Rivard Report from June 2016 to October 2017. She is originally from Guadalajara, Mexico and holds a bachelor's in English...