It should come as no surprise that one of the largest Western art auctions in the world takes place annually in Texas. After all, everything is bigger here, right?
Update, Mar 17: The Briscoe Western Art Museum has closed. Find the “Night of Artists” exhibition and sale online.
But size is not what makes the Briscoe Western Art Museum’s “Night of Artists” so fantastic. It’s the art and the stories it tells of the West. Sharing that background and perspective is what San Antonio’s Briscoe does every day. A modern museum housing art and artifacts reflecting the history and culture of the American West, the Briscoe shares the stories of the unchartered lands that lured people West. Tales of glory and hardship are brought to life, making a Briscoe stop a must on any River Walk stroll.
The stories of the West are far more than cowboys and cattle. You can’t talk about the West without them, but throw in scenic landscapes, inspired Native Americans, stunning wildlife and detailed portraiture, and a fuller, more complete picture of the West emerges. The wide range of artworks and artist genres featured at “Night of Artists” is stunning. And yes, cowboys are featured, along with vaqueros and the pioneering women who helped tame that wild West that we all imagine.
The country’s premier Western artists and collectors will gather in San Antonio to celebrate all of that during the Briscoe’s annual “Night of Artists” Exhibition and Art Sale, March 27-28. The “night” portion of the name is a bit of a misnomer as the event actually spans a full weekend, with the chance to view and purchase nearly 300 new works of painting, sculpture and mixed media by 80 of the country’s leading contemporary Western artists.
Beyond the opening weekend of festivities, “Night of Artists” is also as a public exhibition and sale that spans six weeks, March 29 – May 3. “Night of Artists” also serves as a fundraiser for the museum, benefiting the Briscoe’s full array of exhibitions, engagement and educational programs throughout the year.
Scrolling through the online gallery, it’s easy to understand why “Night of Artists” draws artists, collectors and art enthusiasts from around the country to the Briscoe’s beautiful home on the banks of the San Antonio River. The wide range of artworks and artist genres, as well as the array of styles and subjects, reflects the vastness of the West.
This year’s featured artists include well-known contemporary artists such as Teresa Elliott, Martin Grelle, George Hallmark, Z.S. Liang, Mark Maggiori and Kim Wiggins. Notable new artists participating this year include William Alther, Bruce Cheever, Mian Situ and Ezra Tucker.
Art enthusiasts can hear directly from artists Mark Maggiori and George Hallmark during the Briscoe Bison Society Collectors Summit, where artists, collectors and gallery owners share their insights during panel discussions exploring the Western art market. Intended for novice to seasoned art collectors, the panels feature nationally recognized Western artists, experts and gallery owners. The Exhibition Preview, Dinner and Live Auction featuring 30 separate works unfolds March 27, followed by the Grand Exhibition Opening, Art Sale and Reception on March 28.
An interesting note to “Night of Artists”: more than 22% of the artists featured are female. While people so often picture men when they talk about the West, women are vital to the narrative and history shared through Western Art.
Tickets for all “Night of Artists” events are available online or by calling 210.299.4499. The “Night of Artists”public exhibition will be on display during regular museum hours March 29 – May 3 and is included in museum admission. All “Night of Artists” works are included in the exhibition and any that are not sold during the opening weekend events will be available for purchase through the exhibition.
Cover: A glimpse of the 2019 “Night of Artists” event. Photo courtesy the Briscoe Western Art Museum