On April 15, local San Antonio artists gathered at the Movement Gallery to showcase their artwork and celebrate the creative minds of those who make art. The event entitled “Art of Consciousness” was held by the Southwest Worker’s Union and hosted by artists, Jagwired Art and Jose H. Mojica “Wally.”

At 6:30 p.m., the exhibit opened with a short chant and song by Rudi Hurst of the multi faith community, Celebration Circle. Hurst’s song praised the work and dedication of all the artists and stressed the importance of creating.

The exhibit included pieces crafted from various forms of media such as acrylic paint and sculpted metal. Additionally, all the paintings were in 3-D and glasses were provided for guests to see the already visually stunning work come alive.

Soon after, there was a Q&A, where artists were asked questions, such as, “What is the best thing about being an artist?” Many answered by saying art is therapeutic for them. Acrylic painter Christian DeWorde said, “(With art) you have an escape to play.” Many of the artists began creating at an early age. Racheal Acosta, a 2014 UTSA alumna, started painting as a child. Her mother was an art teacher and encouraged her to explore creative endeavors. Acosta’s father was a science teacher whose influence inspired much of her artwork. Her pieces depict cells and micro-organisms. She considers her parents one of her biggest influences.

Artists were then asked, “What is the worst thing about being an artist?” Street artist Emari Omnava Donahue said, “I’m always broke, but I can do what I want!” Others mentioned having to strike a balance between their art and family.

The Q&A concluded with Jagwired Art articulating the importance of having a sense of community among San Antonio artists, including musicians. She said, “One cannot exist without the other.”

Behind the Movement Gallery was a lush green community garden. People gathered and discussed the evening’s events. Rows of art vendors lined the side of the Gallery’s outer wall. One vendor was the Imaginarium Wonder Emporium. The two business owners, Beau Vincent and Kat Day, sell handcrafted bohemian knickknacks. They are planning to open a store on the southside, featuring funhouse mirrors, parlor tricks and a library.

Artists and attendees jam out during the drum circle.
Brandon Armstead, The Paisano

At 8:30 p.m., the concert began. The show included groups such as the Golden Teachers and Ramparts; both local talent. The Ramparts featured artist Dru Bergeron. During the band’s performance, Bergeron was on stage sketching a piece of art. The Ramparts adventurous indie sound complemented Bergeron’s otherworldly, futuristic drawing. This was the first time Bergeron drew on stage with a band. He said, “I always like to draw while listening to music.” After the show, he described the experience as “weird” but said he would do it again.

The night concluded with a drum circle inside the exhibit hall. Both artists and guests sat in chairs beating drums, shaking tambourines and blowing wind instruments. In the center of the circle, people danced and chanted with the rhythm of the drums. Featured artist Red described the circle as having “good energy” after letting loose on the dance floor.

The purpose of “The Art of Consciousness” was to bring San Antonio and the larger South Texas art community together. Jagwired Art and Mojica believe cultivating a robust and supportive community of creative minds is necessary not only for artists but the public at large.

Displayed and performing artists include: Rachel Acosta, Jagwired Art, Christopher Paul Cardoza, Richard Cervantes, Emari Omnava Donahue, Mar Gutierrez, Golden Teachers, Rudi Harst, Roshi K, Raymona Marie, April Rose Martinez, Daniel Martinez, Jimmy Moon, David Peche, Ramparts, Nazareth Sando, Saytown Outsider Art, Samuel Velasquez, Abril Viola and Christian Withers.

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