Becoming a Musician: From Mexico’s Silver Mines to the Clubs of San Antonio

@ VOL 19 ON AUG 25, 2015

Joe Reyes owes his work ethic to his family and the discipline they instilled in him. The promise of work in Mexico’s silver mines attracted his great grandfather’s family, but the Mexican Revolution sent his family fleeing north to Texas. His early exposure to music came in the form of folkloric Mexican music, but it was “Los Beatles” that struck a chord. Joe Reyes’ presentation shares his musical journey that included different acts, international tours and even a Grammy win and a Latin Grammy nomination. 


Damn the Torpedoes: A Life in Service to Art

@ VOL 19 ON AUG 25, 2015

Paula Owen believes artists are essential in a healthy society — agents of social change able to articulate bold, complicated and important ideas. That passion has driven her to take great calculated risks in her life and career, and to great effect: She overcame childhood polio and helped raise her siblings after her mother was left disabled by the disease. She went on an archaeological dig during a military coup in Panama. She graduated college at a time when 70% of women did not work outside the home. That determination contributed to her successful leadership of the Southwest School of Art, where she serves her ultimate goal of fostering artists in the Southwest.


Twice Conquered, Twice Victorious: Mexican-American Author on Inspiration, Resilience and Art

@ VOL 19 ON AUG 25, 2015

Yvette Benavides recalls the fire that threatened to claim Our Lady of the Lake University’s very existence, how the community rallied to rebuild, and how literary trailblazer Sandra Cisneros offered to be its writer-in-residence at no fee. From there, the author and college professor takes us through her own literary coming of age, how her multicultural and bilingual upbringing shaped her art, and how she sets out to reach the diverse future scholars in her classroom. With original illustrations by Hector Garza.



Lessons from Contemporary Art

@ VOL 19 ON AUG 25, 2015

Mary Heathcott has worked in the contemporary art world for nearly 20 years. Throughout her career she has been challenged to explain, translate, defend, evaluate and inspire support for art that often is challenging, thought-provoking, and even ugly. In her talk, she presents lessons contemporary art has taught her: whether it’s playful, somber or obscure, art champions experimentation, ideas, dialogue and more.

The Missions: San Antonio’s Global Treasures

@ VOL 19 ON AUG 25, 2015

Susan Snow takes us on a tour of the historic San Antonio missions, which were first established to help make "good Spanish citizens" who could govern their own community while taking advantage of the life-giving river. Today, the missions are a UNESCO World Heritage site, a designation given to select places around the world exhibiting outstanding universal value. The path to earning this coveted designation required experts from diverse backgrounds to build an iron clad case of support. Since winning that nomination, Susan Snow and her team now work to improve conservation methods, to educate the community, and to preserve and promote these global treasures for the entire world.


Great Service: A Recipe for a Life Well Lived

@ VOL 20 ON DEC 01, 2015

Steve McHugh is a renowned chef and restaurateur who shares his passion for great service through the people who have been most influential to him. His parents taught him to serve others because it brings happiness. Chef John Besh helped him develop a palette able to detect nuanced flavors many of us can only dream of tasting. And while he was beating cancer, his oncology team showed him even a hospital can create an inviting environment for guests. Most people can forgive a mistake; people just want to see you try.

Movin’ on Up: For a Better San Antonio, Head East

@ VOL 20 ON DEC 01, 2015

Tony Leverett shares how the Promise Neighborhood initiative through the Department of Education aims to transform communities through closing the gaps in education and opportunity. But as passionate as he is about the building up the burgeoning East Side community, he reminds us that it’s about the bigger picture of San Antonio as a whole. We can create an environment where young
entrepreneurs, artist, technologists and more can find the kind of life-changing opportunities they’re hungry for.

Why Cities are Competing for Top Tech Talent

@ VOL 20 ON DEC 01, 2015

David Heard is sadly accustomed to his technologist friends moving away from San Antonio. The tech scene is too small, they say. The landscape is too suburban. Is our city just going to be a nice place to retire? Or can San Antonio become a place young, educated, highly coveted professionals aspire to live in, the kind of place where the world’s talent decides to build their careers? To do this, he believes we must fight out fierce competition from other cities and attract top tech talent. To understand why tech talent is the key to a strong future, David Heard outlines how technology and tech jobs are fundamentally transforming cities and their economies.

Making Boys Cry, and Other Ways to Change the World

@ VOL 20 ON DEC 01, 2015

Kylie Helterbrand is an eighth-grade student graduating high school in 2020, but she isn’t waiting until commencement to start changing the world. Already, global issues like climate change, terrorism, the wage gap and marriage equality are front-and-center in her world. Despite how daunting these challenges appear, she also knows they’re not insurmountable. She challenges audiences and her peers alike to get started making positive change today.

Building a City Through the Power of Being Friendly

@ VOL 20 ON DEC 01, 2015

Jody Bailey Newman is "Chief Friend" behind many of San Antonio’s favorite ice houses and neighborhood hang outs. What began as a joke after a job loss became the Friendly Spot Ice House, the de facto town hall of the community around it. More than just building places to get a cold brew, Newman wants to create places where friends and family can gather, places that embrace diversity, and places that advance the city through the power of being friendly.

Learning to Speak: Poetry as Pursuit of Truth

@ VOL 20 ON DEC 01, 2015

"This poem is an ode to every hard working artist who knows the joy of struggle from which their art comes."

In Learning to Speak: Poetry as Pursuit of Truth from PechaKucha Night San Antonio Vol. 20, poet laureate, Laurie Ann Guerrero looks back at her ancestors’ history of labor and struggle as art, a legacy of poets, musicians and painters whose artistry was a way to map and ultimately transcend the world. Art, she says, is a pursuit of truth. It was her ancestor’s many generations of that pursuit that ultimately gave her the privilege and position of being asked to make art: the maker, not the object. Through poetry, Guerrero invites us to share in that space of openness, vulnerability and ultimately grace.

This was "PechaKucha of the Day" on Wednesday, January 21st, 2016. 

A Resilient City Through Environmental Sustainability

@ VOL 20 ON DEC 01, 2015

Douglas Melnick is passionate about environmental sustainability. And for good reason, because San Antonio is getting hotter. Temperatures here have risen 2.5 degree Celsius since 1960, and these kinds of drastic changes have real implications for our city today and tomorrow. For example, our infrastructure was not designed for the inundation of flood waters and other
extreme weather conditions that are becoming more frequent. But we can build resilience into our communities with incremental steps like composting, which leads to less methane in the atmosphere, or riding a bike to work, which decreases carbon emissions. And he reminds us if we don’t have the public transportation or other sustainability programs we want to see, it’s up to us to advocate for them.

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