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Preserving the Art & Culture Of the American West Discovering A New Horizon When you enter

Preserving the Art & Culture Of the American West

Discovering A New Horizon

When you enter the Briscoe Western Art Museum you encounter a dynamic blend of art and artifacts that explore what it took for pioneers to settle the West: Movement, Opportunity, Conflict, and Work. The artwork depicts life in the American West, highlighting the Native American, Spanish, Mexican and Cowboy cultures that created new possibilities for their shared endeavors. The paintings, sculpture, and artifacts convey the magnificent story that has captivated people for decadesthe triumph over struggle, majestic landscapes, and the promise of opportunity to be discovered beyond the horizon.

You Can Help Preserve this Heritage

In recent decades, cities in the American West have concentrated new development in self- contained commercial suburbs. In San Antonio, the development beyond Loop 1604 has given rise to new neighborhoods with ample stores, schools, entertainment, and jobs that are disconnected from the center of the city and its history and culture.

The authentic sights and sounds of the women and men who shaped the American West, Texas and the Alamo City are at risk of being forgotten. Your support can help preserve their stories.

Why is it important to preserve the history and heritage of the West? In addition to the obvious benefits to supporting local tourism, communities like San Antonio thrive when its citizens feel a sense of history and cultural identity—a sense of belonging to “a place.” Pride in belonging to a special place leads to high levels of personal satisfaction, productivity, and civic engagement.

Future generations are at risk of losing touch with the diverse stories of how the American West came to be. Not only will the complex formation of the West and Texas be forgotten, but the multi-faceted history of the Alamo City will be reduced down to a simplistic narrative.

Your participation in our campaign to preserve the art, history, and culture of the American West is essential. Your support is needed to preserve the stories of our shared heritage.

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The Art of History

The Briscoe Western Art Museum houses a dynamic collection of art and artifacts in the heart of San Antonio’s original settlement—on the banks of the River less than a thousand feet from the Alamo, across from La Villita, and a short walk to San Fernando Cathedral. Local residents and those experiencing the City for the first time can discover the region’s history and heritage within the Briscoe’s collection of paintings, sculpture, and artifacts.

With the City of San Antonio’s Tri-Centennial celebration coming in 2018, the Briscoe will be in the spotlight, showcasing its collection spanning over 500 years. The galleries reflect important milestones through religions paintings of New Spain, a diorama of The Alamo, works inspired by the Mexican Revolution, Santa Anna’s sword, and more contemporary works.

With your support, future generations will have the opportunity to explore the diverse narratives of the people who came West to create a new life. With a setting on the famed River Walk, near attractions like the Alamo and Main Plaza, the Briscoe is both art museum and visitor attraction — uniquely suited to preserve the inspiring story of San Antonio, Texas, and the West.

Inspired by Governor Dolph Briscoe

Your support of the Briscoe Museum puts you in the company of the South Texas business leaders who shared a passion for the history, art, and culture of the West. Named in honor of the late Governor Dolph Briscoe, Jr. and his wife Janey, who helped form the mission and made major contributions to create the Museum, the Briscoe Western Art Museum tells the stories of struggle and triumph of those who settled a vast region, the American West.

Love of the land and an appreciation of the history of the people who came West were life-long inspirations for Governor Briscoe. In his memoires he wrote about the pioneers who came West…

“…looking for an opportunity to create a better, more rewarding life for their family and themselves. Despite extreme hardship, deprivations, and dangers, they preserved. The result has been that their children, grandchildren and descendants have had the privileges and opportunities that those original settlers dreamed of and wanted for them… I firmly believe that we cannot really understand the present without knowledge of the past.”

The Mission of the Briscoe Museum

Through the preservation of the art, history, and culture of the American West, the Briscoe

Western Art Museum inspires and educates the public with engaging exhibitions, educational programs, and public events reflective of the region's rich traditions and shared heritage.

You can secure the future of a cultural jewel through your support. The Briscoe opened in the fall of 2013. It was created through a bold public-private redevelopment project, San Antonio’s beloved historic library building was restored and now houses the Museum’s collection. The Jack Guenther Pavilion, designed by Lake|Flato, was constructed as an event center and exhibition space. The 1.25 acre downtown campus includes the McNutt Courtyard & Sculpture Garden, with an impressive selection of sculpture and native Texas landscape.

With your investment the Briscoe will continue to tell the story of the West in all of its drama. The art and artifacts on display convey the important story of the formation of the American West.

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Safekeeping the American West:

Preserving the Heritage of Diverse Cultures

Your involvement in the Briscoe Museum will ensure the preservation of its art, history, and culture. When visitors enter the lobby, they find themselves standing before a monumental bronze that conveys the transformation of the West—Visions of Change by John Coleman. A herd of bison under the watchful eye of an Indian sweep down toward the viewer. Mirrored on the opposite side of the sculpture, a cattledrive cascades down while the Cowboy gazes out over the herd.

Art created by Native American artists include works by Doug Hyde, Allan Houser, a contemporary teepee made in 2013 by Comanche artists, a leather Blackfoot war shirt, and many contemporary works by leading Native American artists. Images depicting Native American culture are found throughout the Museum including photographs by Edward Curtis and others—as well as in numerous sculptures and paintings. The striking Eagle Dancer Potawatomi by Bronzes found outside include Goodacre’s The Basket Dance and Coleman’s The Rainmaker.

The Spanish and Mexican influence on the development of the West is richly represented through rare pieces from the Guerra family collection: pieces from the 1600s, religious paintings from the 1700s, a silk embroidered Spanish Viceroy saddle from the 1700s, and many more rare pieces. Active on the Briscoe Board, Che Guerra’s ancestors migrated to Nueva España from Spain by 1603, making the pieces all the more meaningful. Additional pieces include a sword presented to Santa Anna, an ornate Mexican guitar, and traditional Vaquero saddles and clothing.

Without your support, it will be difficult to sustain the mission to preserve and present American Cowboy culture. Ranch life is depicted in works created as early as1700, and as recently as a 2015. Highlights include Charles M. Russell’s bronze, Where the Best Riders Quit and Billy Schenck’s Throwin’ A Loop. A favorite with visitors, The Museum’s Alamo Diorama made by King and Country, places visitors in the famous battle scene—a turning point in the early days of the West.

In all, nearly 800 carefully-selected pieces are on display. With your contribution the size, scope, and importance of the Briscoe Museum’s Collection can expand to tell the complete story.

Your Community Gathering Place

You have the opportunity to support a unique downtown institution. The Briscoe Museum seeks to inspire and educate the public through exhibitions, programs, and public events. Since the Briscoe Museum opened in October, 2013, individuals from around the world have visited the only San Antonio museum dedicated solely to the art, history, and heritage of the American West.

The mystique of the West, and the popularity of the themes surrounding its history, attracts individuals and families who may be having one of their first museum experiences. With your investment, and the support of others like you, the public will continue to have open access to a number of ongoing programs, offered as a community service free-of-charge.

Brief descriptions of community programs follow below:

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Free Tuesday Evenings — 4 until 9 pm, with thoughtfully-planned activities, including:

• 210|West Gallery Talks: a first-Tuesday exploration of a work or regional issue Native Film Series: free film screenings in series curated by Michael Horse • Distinguished Lecture Series: leaders in their field discuss the American West Briscoe Film Series: free summertime screenings of popular Western movies • Live Music and Dance: occasional free concerts by collaborating arts agencies

Military Salute — Active Military and their families receive free admission to the Museum, to honor their service and encourage exploration of the Museum. Friday is a popular day for newly-graduated cadets to visit the River Walk, and free, interactive “drop- in” tours are provided to enhance enjoyment of the paintings, artifacts and sculpture.

Yanaguana Indian Arts Market — This weekend showcases Native American arts and is free to the public. Presented in October, the exhibition introduces visitors to the highest quality work by the country’s leading Native American artists. A schedule of music, dance, and storytelling performances is presented by Native American performing arts groups.

Collaboration with other organizations adds depth to many of the Briscoe Museum’s programs. The San Antonio Public Library oversees the Museum’s Digital Library Portal, including the current exhibition highlighting the contributions of Buffalo Soldiers, the African American cavalry regimens formed in the mid 1800s. UTSA and Trinity University faculty members as well as Museum colleagues from Artpace, McNay, and the San Antonio Museum of Art participate in lectures, film screenings, and talks. Performances by the Guadalupe Dance Company, Youth Orchestra of San Antonio, the UTSA Choral Program and others have brought music and dance to the Briscoe Museum.

Economic Activity

The Briscoe Museum’s economic influence on San Antonio’s economy began with the investments in the renovation of a sorely neglected, downtown historic building, and the new development of the Jack Guenther Pavilion and courtyard. In the early stages, between 2000 and 2011, $40 million was raised and invested in design and infrastructure. The chart shows annual impact up to 2020.

$96,000,000 direct impact by 2020

• Free Tuesday Evenings — 4 until 9 pm, with thoughtfully - planned activities, including: •

The Museum’s impact on employment is $1.6 million through staff salaries. Additionally, the

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Briscoe helps draw out-of-town tourism dollars, and generates an estimated $1,000,000 a year for catering companies who produce events in the Jack Guenther Pavilion.

The City recently completed redevelopment of the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center. The San Antonio Business Journal references the role of cultural attractions such as the Briscoe Museum:

“…that massive, $325 million brick-and-mortar investment alone will not reap the full rewards the city is chasing without other complementary commitments that could also help reshape downtown.”

San Antonio Convention & Visitors Bureau Executive Director Casandra Matej has stated that San Antonio will have to make other investments if it hopes to compete. “Conventioneers want to be able to walk,” she said. “Continuing to grow the vibrancy of downtown is going to be key for us.” The Briscoe Museum provides convention visitors easy access to a quintessential experience of the West.

The Texas Cultural Trust recently released its 2015 report, “2015 State of the Arts Report,” which looks at the arts’ impact on the Texas economy. Overall, the arts and culture industry generates $5.1 billion across the state. In San Antonio, the creative industry generates over $314,000,000 a year in economic activity – adding $3.1 million to the local tax revenue which, in turn, funds ever- widening waves of cross-sector economic activity.

Visitor Snapshot: October 2015

The Museum opened its doors in October, 2013 and has welcomed nearly 150,000 visitors in just over two years. Military personnel, students, seniors, tourists, families, downtown residents, locals

and convention visitors are making the Briscoe one of San Antonio’s top attractions. The month of October, 2015 was a model month during which the Museum had a robust mix of programs and events. To illustrate the various impacts of the Briscoe, data from that month is presented below.

October, 2015 Visitors



Education Tours







Local Residents………… 15% Texas ……………………… 12% USA ……………………… 62%

International …………



Organizational Capacity

The Museum’s founding Board of Directors led a hugely successful capital campaign to renovate the historic library and outdoor courtyard, construct a new event pavilion, and install the exhibits that grace the galleries. The Board is comprised of an exemplary group of men and women who have invested years of determined work, a depth of professional expertise, and personal resources to ensure the success of the Museum. Many founding Board Members continue to serve the organization, including two leaders who initiated the project, Mark E.

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Watson, Jr. and Jack Guenther.


Your Trust is Everything

Under the leadership of Executive Director Tom Livesay, who was recently awarded the highest honor in the museum field (Alliance of American Museums’ Distinguished Service Award) the Briscoe is on track for full museum accreditation. This will be a significant accomplishment for a young museum. Livesay’s 40 years of experience in museum leadership has earned him a reputation for increasing the quality and professionalism of museums.

Your trust in the institution is vital if we are to succeed. The Museum’s core values assure the community that the organization not only complies with all relevant regulations, but that at every level the organization is guided by its commitment to be a steward of the public trust—your trust.

INTEGRITY — We value honesty, fairness, and transparency with our stakeholders, colleagues and members of the community, and strive for the highest level of excellence.

RESPECT — We value mutual respect in our relationships with stakeholders, staff, and the community at large as well as with the art and artifacts under our stewardship.

CREATIVITY — We value creativity in the art and culture of the American West as demonstrated in our collections, programs, and exhibitions.

LEADERSHIP — We value leadership and will demonstrate the highest standards and best practices with all professional endeavors -- both internally as an institutions and in our personal relationships with the community.

Your investment will preserve the history and heritage of the American West.

“…I believe in the great value of historical knowledge. Learning about the

history of our state and nation has enriched my life in so many ways. And I

want others to have their lives enriched as well.”

Governor Dolph Briscoe

We need your support. The Briscoe’s ability to preserve The West depends on financial sustainability and the gifts of generous individuals like you. The Museum is fortunate to have a strong foundation. To thrive for generations to come, those who cherish the story of the West must join forces to ensure the future of the Briscoe Museum. You can strengthen this cause.

With your help, the art, history and culture of Texas and The West will grow and flourish — the stories of the West will inspire generations to come. Without you, it may all be forgotten.

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