A major San Antonio is saddling up for an intimate look at the modern American cowboy lifestyle through the lens of acclaimed photographer Anouk Masson Krantz.

Her new exhibition, "American Cowboys," opens September 29 at the Briscoe Western Art Museum, showcasing stunning black-and-white images that reveal the enduring culture of the ranching families and rodeo communities.

The exhibition promises a behind-the-scenes look at the less-urban world surrounding San Antonio and other Texas locales. Featuring over 100 stunning photographs, Krantz's lens provides a contemporary homage to cowboy culture across the frontier.

Raised in France but now based in New York City, Krantz has traveled across America to photograph the daily lives and enduring culture of today's cowboys and cowgirls. Her subjects are ranchers, tight-knit rodeo crowds, and the virtues of the Western lifestyle that remain remarkably unchanged for more than 150 years.

Her being raised outside of America is important for connecting mythology — what she learned in France as tropes — to reality. Many San Antonians have become used to knowing ranchers and equestrians, but the French photographer's images provide an inspiring and fresh outside view into the enduring pioneering spirit of the West..

"Krantz's intimate portraits and stunning panoramas showcase the life of today's cowboys and ranchers — and vividly prove that what she'd heard of, and we all think of as the Western life, is alive and thriving," says Briscoe president and CEO Liz Jackson.

Selected images on Krantz’s website feature a cowboy on horseback tipping his hat in a timeless, polite gesture, framed surprisingly through a car window as if glimpsed across eras. Another photo depicts women seated around a vintage car, chatting with one another. Juxtaposing classic cowboy iconography with candid moments of connection, the photos reveal the photographer's fascination with both pervasive myths and ephemeral glimpses of Western American life.

"Although long admired for their strength, relentless work ethic and humble values, the American Cowboy is more than a myth.” Jackson remarks.

Guests can anticipate hearing unique insights directly from the acclaimed French photographer herself during an exclusive tour, as she shares details about capturing the authentic daily lives of humble, yet virtuous cowboys and their families. Visitors can also keep exploring the Briscoe's Western offerings, which have long been a defining part of the museum's curatorial style.

"The exhibition pairs well with our permanent collection where visitors can see both historical and contemporary art, tools of the cowboy trade, and artifacts of the West," says Jackson.

Krantz's critically acclaimed photography offers an inspiring and fresh view into the enduring pioneering spirit of the West. Fans will also have the opportunity to take home a signed copy of Krantz's latest art book Ranchland: Wagonhound, which won the 2023 Western Heritage Award.

"American Cowboys" will be on display at the Briscoe Western Art Museum from September 29, 2023, to January 22, 2024. Tickets ($14, plus discounts for children, seniors, military, and students) to the Briscoe are available at briscoemuseum.org.

Shot from American Cowboys at the Briscoe Western Art Museum

Photo courtesy of the Briscoe Western Art Museum

Anouk Masson Krantz lends her images from touring the American West at the Briscoe Western Art Museum, starting September 29.

Photo courtesy of the artist

Prolific photography exhibition puts Latinx life in focus for San Antonians

From SA to SA

Now is your chance to see more than 200 works from 20 award-winning Latin American and Latinx photographers living in South, Central, and North America taking on the topics of immigration, indigenous realities, aftereffects of the COVID pandemic, and women’s rights.

“From SA to SA: From South America to San Antonio” is an exhibition that demonstrates the power of documentary photography as a direct representation of our realities and as a force of social change.

On display at the Centro de Artes Gallery through December 30, 2023, the exhibition is put on by the City of San Antonio’s Department of Arts & Culture

Tamara Merino "Isolated Soul"

Photo courtesy of the artist

Tamara Merino "Isolated Soul."

Curated by San Antonio multi-disciplinary artist and educator Guillermina Zabala, the artworks focus on the interconnected weaving of individual and collective stories depicted in appealing, powerful, and thought-provoking photographic images.

"As an Argentine-American artist and curator, I wanted to bring part of my history and culture to San Antonio,” Zabala says. “With this exhibit I present a glimpse of a wider panorama of sociopolitical and economic realities emerging from Latin America and Latinx communities in the U.S. Through striking imagery and compelling storytelling, I want to invite the audience to immerse themselves in the stories, the places, and the people."

The exhibition features work by Rodrigo Abd, Sara Aliaga, Eliana Aponte, Guillermo Arias, María Paula Avila, Verónica Gabriela Cárdenas, María Eugenia Cerutti, Francisco Cortés, Ana Carolina Fernandes, Mariana Greif, Sáshenka Gutiérrez Valerio, Adeline Lulo, Tamara Merino, Sandro Pereyra, Natacha Pisarenko, Joseph Rodriguez, Jorge Saenz, Claudio Santana, Yvonne Venegas, and Martín Zabala.

“Images are an illuminating component in storytelling and these artists expertly use their cameras to document social change, historical events, and everyday life,” says Department of Arts & Culture executive director Krystal Jones. “At first you may think the photography on display is straightforward, yet when you take a closer look you quickly discover alternative ways of viewing the world through these talented artists’ eyes.”

There will be an Artist Talk on Thursday, October 26, from 6-8 pm, and a virtual option on Wednesday, November 15, from 6-8 pm.

Centro de Artes is free to visit and open to the public Wednesdays through Fridays from 10:30 am-5 pm, plus Saturdays and Sundays from noon- 5 pm. The gallery is closed on Mondays, Tuesdays, and City holidays.

Located in Historic Market Square, Centro de Artes is dedicated to telling the transnational story of the Latino experience in the U.S. with a focus on San Antonio and South Texas through local and regional art, history, and culture.

For more information, visit sanantonio.gov/arts and follow on social at @getcreativesa, #CentrodeArtesSA, and #FromSAtoSA.

Photo by James Khattak, K.Co Press.

New coffee table book explores the Texas Plains and Panhandle


Big Bend is a National Geographic pick for the 25 must-see places in the world, but not everyone is lucky enough to live an eight-hour drive away. There are other ways to see the wild, and not-so-wild, West.

A new coffee table book exploring the vast expanses of West Texas is set to hit the shelves in June. Frontiers by Stephanie and James Khattak, the founders of Dallas-based K.Co Press, is the publication’s fourth book.

The more than 100-page photography book will showcase the beauty, “diversity and interest of an area that lives large in Texas lore,” according to a blog post. It is their first release of 2023.

Some of the gorgeous West Texas locations the book captures include Amarillo, Abilene, Lubbock, Marfa, Palo Duro Canyon, and many more.

Stephanie hopes Frontiers inspires readers to “learn more about this consequential region, and to experience it for themselves," she said in a release.

“From the grandeur of the Palo Duro Canyon to the kitsch of Route 66 in Amarillo, the enduring legacies of the Quanah Parker Trail and unique destinations of all sizes, the Texas frontier is as interesting as it is beautiful,” she said.

K.Co Press’ three previous coffee table books and travel guides were all published throughout 2022, entitled Ten Texas Towns and Places In-Between: Field Notes from the Back Roads; Sunwashed; and Howdy, Neighbor!

Two additional books are slated for release in 2023. Shorelines, which captures the Texas coast from Port Isabel in South Texas to Port Arthur in East Texas, is scheduled for August. Their sixth book, entitled When Brothers Agree: Historic Masonic Lodge Buildings in Texas and the Region, is expected in November.

Frontiers will be published on May 30, and will be ready for purchase in early June. For more information, visit kcoarts.com.

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Scorching chicken, Wemby burgers, and Bachelorette chefs woo San Antonio food news


Editor's note: We get it. It can be difficult to keep up with the fast pace of San Antonio's restaurant and bar scene. We have you covered with our weekly roundup of essential food news.


According to Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) filings, former Bachelorette contestant Page Pressley and post-show partner DezArey Rodriguez are brewing a new coffee shop in the downtown Jefferson Bank Building. Over the summer, the couple waged a successful crowdfunding campaign for The Newstand, a concept incorporating classic American pastries, sandwiches, and a vintage shop. The project is set for completion in April 2024.

A second location of Dave's Hot Chicken will roost at 7511 S. New Braunfels Ave. on December 2. The Californian chain specializes in Nashville-style hot chicken, available in seven heat levels ranging from the wimpy spiceless option to the masochistic reaper. The company promises that six additional locations will open in the area before its reign of terror is squashed.

Growing Houston brand Mambo Seafood is building yet another San Antonio store. The Latin-tinged restaurant opened its first local outpost in August and filed paperwork for a second in November. TDLR records indicate a third Mambo is developing at 803 Castroville Rd. The construction is set to wrap up in July 2024.

Other news and notes

One of San Antonio's most spirited traditions is now in full swing. For almost a decade, Dorçol Distilling has invited premier Alamo City bars to make signature cocktails using Kinsman rakia as part of its annual Brandy Alexander Tour. For the first time this year, an Austin spot — Bacalar — is participating, joining local hot spots like Bar Loretta, Double Standard, and Ladino.

Turns out that wanting to rock and roll all night has its limits. On December 2, storied rock band KISS will perform its last-ever set at Madison Square Garden. To celebrate (or perhaps mourn), the San Antonio location of Rock & Brews invites the KISS Army and KISS Navy (the cruise-faring wing of KISS's paramilitary fandom) to enjoy the show via pay-per-view. Specials include the Demon Chicken Sandwich and the It's Cold Gin Time Again cocktail, made with the band's branded liquor.

Downtown's The Esquire Tavern will celebrate Repeal Day on December 5, marking the anniversary of the end of Prohibition. The milestone is particularly significant to the long-running bar, founded on December 6. The sprightly 90-year-old institution will mark the occasion with a party featuring live music, passed appetizers, and punch. But if going back underground holds more novelty, check out the holiday pop-up bar downstairs.

Local burger legend Chris Madrids is paying homage to the Spur's most celebrated rookie. The Wemby burger includes four beef patties, four slices of cheese, a near metric ton of toppings, and a mini-Victor Wembanyama pick (sadly not in his Slender Man Halloween get-up). Those who finish the whole thing on-site will receive a free Chris Madrids tee and a spot in the coveted Hall of Fame.

'The twinkliest town in Texas' and 6 other Hill Country locales become Christmas wonderlands


Though chance encounters with childhood sweethearts rarely happen between sips of hot cocoa, feeding one's most jolly Hallmark fantasies is perfectly fine. And let's face it, those warm fuzzies aren't always easy to find amongst San Antonio's seasonal glitz. That kind of holiday feeling is a decidedly small-town affair.

If you only get fresh air from a fourth-story balcony, it's time to head on a Texas road trip. Throughout December, the Hill Country rolls out the twinkle lights and garlands to give city slickers some Christmas razzle-dazzle. Unpack a cozy sweater, cue a playlist, and fire up the sleigh.

Dripping Springs
Though much of the season is geared around kids, the many distilleries, wineries, and breweries clustered around Dripping Springs offer some holiday fun for the adults. Hire a van to bop around some of Texas' most spirited spots, including Jester King Brewery, Vista Brewing, Desert Door Sotol, and Deep Eddy Vodka. If nap time doesn't completely waylay plans, Christmas on Mercer on December 2 is the perfect place for some buzzed shopping.

With its historic buildings and rows of quaint shops, Fredericksburg always seems ready to break into an Irving Berlin ditty. During Christmastime, the streets erupt into a full production number. Through January 7, 2024, the town's market square hosts a daily lighting ceremony showcasing tales of Fredericksburg's German heritage and Christmas carols. The Marktplatz also offers an ice-skating rink and one of Texas' most dazzling selfie spots: a 26-foot tall wooden spinning Christmas pyramid.

Forget Stars Hollow. Rory and Lorelai Gilmore's hometown wishes it could conjure up half the Yuletide magic as this Austin suburb. Visit the weekend of December 1 and 2 to catch the annual Christmas Stroll. The town's downtown hosts a family friendly festival with vendors, live music, a parade, and plenty of festive food each year. And the Snow in the Park event ensures a White Christmas.

Johnson City
Johnson City's reputation as the "twinkliest town in Texas" isn't a mere boast. Its downtown display, illuminated through January 7, 2024, is truly a spectacle with over two million bulbs glittering in the night sky. The Blanco County Courthouse is the sparkling hub of several community events throughout the season. Don't miss the annual chili cook-off on December 9, sponsored by some of the Hill Country's best wineries and distilleries.

Marble Falls
Sure, it sounds like a third grader's fever dream, but bumper cars on ice are actually a thing in Marble Falls — offering slip-sliding fun for those who have never heard of a salchow. Less bumpy are the other activities, from a pop-up s'mores bar on December 1 to weekend market days.

New Braunfels
Maybe it's the easygoing river lifestyle, but New Braunfels has always played by its own rules. That's especially true of the holiday season when kids are delighted by visits from the chaps-clad Cowboy Kringle instead of good ole Saint Nick. That individualistic spirit carries over to the town's schedule of events, including a one-person telling of Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol on December 3 and caroling at the Natural Bridge Caverns.

This charming hamlet has no shortage of holiday diversions like the annual Trail of Lights, a walking tour running through December 26. But before the stroll, expect to open the wallet. Wimberley Square is teeming with one-of-a-kind shops selling everything from boho Western gear to French country home goods. The hospitality scene is no slouch, either. Grab a quick pie at Community Pizza or splurge on shellfish and champagne at RR12 Supper Club.

Georgetown Christmas

Georgetown's downtown decked in its holiday finest.

Here are the top 7 things to do in San Antonio this weekend

Weekend Event Guide

Holly jolly happenings and live entertainment are on the schedule for the days ahead. Enjoy a tree lighting and seasonal festivities at La Cantera Resort & Spa, or settle in for an evening in conversation with Priscilla Presley. Check out the top seven things to do in San Antonio this weekend. For a complete list of events, go to our calendar.

Thursday, November 30

La Cantera Resort & Spa presents a Holiday Tree Lighting
The annual Holiday Tree Lighting ceremony returns to La Cantera Resort & Spa. Highlights of the evening include appearances by Santa and the Grinch, light bites, festive cocktails, children’s activities, and more. Guests will also get to enjoy a Vegas-style revue and live musical performance by jazz vocalist and saxophonist Patrick Lamb in the resort’s lobby plaza. For more details, go to lacanteraresort.com.

Ballet San Antonio presents The Nutcracker
Photo by Marty Sohl Photography

Ballet San Antonio presents The Nutcracker now through December 10.

The Light Park
Cruise into an illuminated wonderland with millions of lights synchronized to holiday music classics with the entire family at Retama Park. The Light Park is a one-mile, drive-thru experience complete with dazzling light displays portraying the magic of the winter holiday season. For more information, go to thelightpark.com. The Light Park is open through January 1, 2024.

Majestic Theatre presents This Is Important Live!
The co-creators and stars of the popular Comedy Central show Workaholics will host their podcast, This is Important, in front of a live audience at Majestic Theatre. The group, comprised of Adam Devine, Anders Holm, Blake Anderson, and Kyle Newacheck, will dive into and discuss a myriad of not-so-serious topics facing society, ranging from naked grandmas to grown men fighting children. Pick your seats for this hilarious evening of conversation at majesticempire.com.

Friday, December 1

Somos Cultura y Más presents "Posadas y Poinsettias"
Celebrate Mexican heritage and traditions through food and educational activities at Mi Familia at the Rim. Visitors can enjoy specialty cocktails, posada games, and more while raising funds for Dia de los Niños and Somos storytellers programming. Guests will also get to take a special gift home to commemorate the evening. Get your tickets at somosculturaymas.org.

Majestic Theatre presents Elf in concert
Enjoy a holiday film favorite with a live music twist at Majestic Theatre. Guests will enjoy a screening of Elf, starring Will Ferrell, accompanied by a live-to-picture playing of John Debney’s score. Get tickets and more information at majesticempire.com.

Ballet San Antonio presents The Nutcracker
Get lost in a world of holiday wonder and whimsy when you enjoy The Nutcracker performed by the talented dancers of Ballet San Antonio. This production at Tobin Center for the Performing Arts features a children’s cast of more than 100 youth dancers, and will be accompanied by music from the San Antonio Symphony. Showtimes are scheduled through December 10. To purchase tickets, go to balletsanantonio.org.

Saturday, December 2

Empire Theatre presents An Evening with Priscilla Presley
The original first lady of rock ‘n’ roll, Priscilla Presley, comes to Charline McCombs Empire Theatre for one night only. Audience members can listen to Presley’s retelling of her teenage years, her romance and marriage to Elvis, her early years as a mother, and more. Go to majesticempire.com for more information.