URBAN-15

The Alamo on Film: Facts, Fiction, Fantasy

View the next episode of Hidden Histories
Monday, October 1st at 7pm CST
Live production at the URBAN-15 Studio (2500 S. Presa 78210)
or watch online at urban-15.org/live-stream

In Remembering the Alamo: Memory, Modernity, and the Master Symbol, anthropologist Richard R. Flores writes: “Stories of the past … inscribe our present and shape our future.” Historical narratives, in other words, impact self-identity and affect how we relate to others—for better and for worse. Curated by George Cisneros, October’s episode of Hidden Histories examines a long tradition of Alamo cinema, exploring how the story and iconography of the Alamo has shaped the way we view a complex and centuries-long regional history. In “The Alamo on Film,” we discuss five significant Alamo films, aiming to differentiate historical reality from fictional license and interrogate how these narratives have both helped and at times hurt us.

In this Tricentennial year, such questions have expanded from strictly academic inquiry to a wider community of citizen historians. In this spirit, the episode will feature three prominent cultural commentators: first, filmmaker Jimmy Mendiola will discuss the cultural implications of the 1969 comedy Viva Max. Nathan Cone of TPR’s Cinema Tuesdays will then talk about the 1915 silent film Martyrs of the Alamo, the 1960 version of The Alamo starring John Wayne, and John Lee Hancock’s 2004 rendition of The Alamo. Finally, Express-News columnist Elaine Ayala will discuss Remember the Alamo, a thought-provoking documentary produced in 2003 by San Antonio native Joseph Tovares for PBS’s American Experience series. At a time of fraught discussion about U.S.-Mexico relations, panelists will explore how a century of cinematic renderings of the Alamo narrative—probably the most infamous story about “Texans” and “Mexicans”—have influenced and shaped daily life and dialogue between these groups in modern-day San Antonio.

As part of the Tricentennial arts activities, Hidden Histories is a monthly series that pursues and preserves the stories, lives, and places that makes San Antonio a cultural treasure. Throughout 2018, our studio will premiere live episodes once a month, both live in our studio and online. These twelve episodes will highlight and archive interviews with community leaders; performances by significant musicians, dancers, poets, and artists; lost documentary and narrative films; and discussions of vital community issues. Live screenings will be supplemented by interviews with community and field experts.

All episodes are free of charge and can be viewed either live at URBAN-15 studio (2500 S. Presa 78210) or online at urban15.org/live-stream. Episodes premiere the first Mondays of the month at 7pm.

After each live screening, all episodes will be archived online for 24/7 access at http://hiddenhistories.tv/archives

For more information on the series, visit http://hiddenhistories.tv

Save the Date for the 2018 Manhattan Short Film Festival

Four Screenings!
Friday, September 28 @ 8pm
Saturday, September 29 @ 8pm
Friday, October 5 @ 8pm
Saturday, October 6 @ 8pm
CLICK HERE for Tickets!

During the week of September 28 – October 8, filmgoers in San Antonio, TX will unite with over 100,000 film lovers across the world to view and judge the work of the next generation of filmmakers. This year, Manhattan Short received 1565 short film entries from 73 countries. The nine finalists hail from eight countries, and in San Antonio will screen at the URBAN-15 Studio for two weekends (Sept 29-30 and Oct 6-7), beginning at 8pm each night.

DSC05961

Manhattan Short’s unique and enduring feature is that it offers cinema goers a chance to become film critics, filling out a ballot after the screening that allows them to vote for Best Film and Best Actor.  Votes will be sent to Manhattan Short HQ, and winners announced at ManhattanShort.com on Monday, October 8th at 10am EST. With past finalists achieving the ultimate in recognition by being nominated and even winning the Oscar in the short film category, Manhattan Short is well recognized as a breeding ground for the next big thing in film.

Manhattan Short began in 1998, when curator Nicholas Mason screened 16 short films onto a screen mounted to the side of a truck on Mulberry Street, Little Italy, in New York City. A year later, the festival moved up-town to Union Square Park in New York City. In the aftermath of 9/11, Manhattan Short transformed into a worldwide phenomenon, becoming the only film festival on the planet that unfolds, simultaneously, in more than 250 cinemas on six continents.

For information on this year’s ten finalist films, visit the Manhattan Short website

To view a trailer for this year’s festival, click image below:

Tickets are $10 presale and $15 at the door, so buy early HERE!

Independent Film Maker Anne Lewis Screens in San Antonio

Film Screening of Anne Lewis’s documentary

A Strike and an Uprising (in texas)

Friday, September 7th at 7pm

@ URBAN-15 Studio (2500 S. Presa St)

$10 Presale HERE, $15 at the Door

On Friday, September 7th at 7pm, URBAN-15 will host a film screening of independent filmmaker Anne Lewis’s A Strike and an Uprising (in texas), followed by a Q&A with the filmmaker.

The film is an experimental documentary based in the telling of two events: the San Antonio pecan shellers’ strike of 1938 and the Jobs with Justice march led by Nacogdoches cafeteria workers, groundskeepers, and housekeepers in 1987.

In 1938, half of the nation’s pecans were shelled in San Antonio. When the shellers’ wages were cut from about 6 cents to 4 cents per shelled pound, Emma Tenayuca led an estimated ten thousand workers in a massive walk out. The strike lasted 3 months before the company gave in. While the pecan shellers’ strike is recognized by many as the birth of the Chicano movement, it is shrouded in myth and denial about its iconic communist leader, Emma Tenayuca.

nacogdoches march 2

The 1987 march on Nacogdoches was the result of the Annie Mae Carpenter race and gender discrimination lawsuit initiated by the NAACP ten years earlier. Finding that the University and the courts were unresponsive, workers organized a march of more than 3,000 people – labor unionists, civil rights and women’s activists. The march led to a union contract, continuing union representation, and the payment of back wages. While the uprising in Nacogdoches is largely unknown, Texas historian Ruthe Winegarten described it as an epiphany for African American women in Texas.

Lewis explores both events in the same film, using the methods of oral history and, as an experiment, relating these stories strongly to contemporary ideas and events.

anne lewis headshot

Anne Lewis, the Associate Director of HARLAN COUNTY, U.S.A., lives in Austin, Texas. She works mostly in Appalachian Kentucky with Appalshop, where she made FAST FOOD WOMEN (Judges Choice, London Film Festival), ON OUR OWN LAND (DuPont-Columbia);
JUSTICE IN THE COALFIELDS (INTERCOM gold); MORRISTOWN: IN THE AIR AND SUN (Ambulante); and (with Mimi Pickering) ANNE BRADEN: SOUTHERN PATRIOT. Anne teaches film editing at UT Austin and serves on the executive board of TSEU-CWA 6186.

A STRIKE AND AN UPRISING (IN TEXAS) is her first Texas feature. For more information on the film maker, please visit annelewis.org.

Tickets are $10 presale (https://urban-15.ticketleap.com/a-strike-and-an-uprising-in-texas/) and $15 at the door.

To set up an interview with the filmmaker or for questions about the event, please contact URBAN-15 at 210-736-1500 or events@urban15.org.

An Honest Day’s Work: A Labor Day Special

Watch September’s episode of Hidden Histories by clicking below!

Sept Screen Grab

In honor of Labor Day, September’s episode of Hidden Histories explores worker experience in San Antonio and throughout Texas—from the everyday to the extraordinary. The heart of this episode is a discussion with independent filmmaker Anne Lewis, director of A Strike and an Uprising (in Texas), an experimental documentary that tells the story of the San Antonio pecan sheller strike led by Emma Tenayuca and the Jobs with Justice March led by Nacogdoches cafeteria workers, groundskeepers, and housekeepers in 1987. Following discussion with Lewis on the making of this film, brief excerpts will be shown, in anticipation of the full screening on Friday, September 7th at 8pm. Finally, in an homage to Studs Terkel’s Working, September’s episode also presents a collage of short film interviews with a range of San Antonio residents on one question: What was your first job?

Pecan shellers in 1930s San Antonio.

As part of the city’s calendar of Tricentennial arts activities, Hidden Histories is a monthly, magazine-format video series that pursues and preserves the stories, lives, and places that make San Antonio an inspiring cultural treasure. Over the course of 2018, Hidden Histories will premiere 12 monthly screenings live in our studio, free of charge. Each screening highlights archival interviews with community leaders; significant performances by musicians, dancers and poets; interactions with working artists; lost documentaries; forgotten narrative films; and vintage discussions of important community issues. Live screenings are supplemented by interviews and discussions with participants, family members of those featured, and field experts. Following each live screening, video segments are archived online for 24/7 access.
For more information on the Hidden Histories series, or to view previous installments, please visit http://hiddenhistories.tv/
All live and online screenings of Hidden Histories are free of charge. Live screenings take place at the URBAN-15 studio (2500 S. Presa 78210) at 7pm on the first Monday of the month. Online screenings can also be viewed live at https://urban15.org/live-stream. Afterwards, episodes are archived online at http://hiddenhistories.tv/archives/
Since there is limited seating, guests wishing to be a part of the live studio audience on September 3rd must RSVP by Sunday, September 2nd to events@urban15.org for a reservation.

Organizing meeting for Jobs for Justice campaign, Nacogdoches.

Congratulations to the 2018 Josiah Media Festival Winners!

In 2018, 2,040 films were submitted to URBAN-15’s 12th annual Josiah Media Festival. 254 of these were eligible for judging by a panel of filmmakers and film critics, and out of these 254 films–hailing from 38 countries–the following 12 films rose to the top in their genre categories. Congratulations to these young filmmakers and their crews!

Bios of winners and other selected filmmakers coming soon.


ANIMATION

 

1st Place:

RACCOON AND THE LIGHT
Hannah Kim, 21
Valencia, CA, USA

 

 

2nd Place:

LEAVE WITH ME
Mel Wong, 23
London, UK

 

 

3rd Place:

EI: EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE
Dennis Sungmin, 21
Seoul, South Korea


DOCUMENTARY

 

1st Place:

A CHRISTMAS STORY
Andrei Olanescu, 22
Rm. Valcea, Romania

 

2nd Place:

OPEN LETTER TO THE CLOSE-HEARTED
Kiersten Wilkins, 18
San Antonio, TX, USA

 

 

3rd Place:

JOHAR (HELLO)
Abhijit Pastro, 19
Rourkela, India

 


EXPERIMENTAL

 

1st Place:

COMPANY
Max Michel Thillaye, 23
Berlin, Germany

 

 

2nd Place:

A NOTE TO MYSELF
Vivek Jain, 20
Indore, India

 

 

3rd Place:

WAIT PRETTY BUTTERFLY
Brynne McGregor, 20
Cincinatti, OH, USA

 


NARRATIVE

 

1st Place:

TUNDRA
Carol Nguyen, 20
Toronto, Canada

 

 

2nd:

SOARING SOLDIERS
Cecile Elmholt Skou, 19
Hvidovre, Denmark

 

 

3rd:

BREAK
Anne-Marie Bjerre Koch, 19
Hvidovre, Denmark

 


The 2018 Josiah Media Festival will take place Thursday, October 20th – Saturday, October 22nd and will be held at the URBAN-15 Studio, located at 2500 S. Presa, San Antonio, TX, 78210. For more information on this year’s festival, contact us at (210) 736-1500 or josiahfestival@urban15.org.

Tezcatlipoca: Azteca Intergalactic Ambassadors

Opening alongside the Hidden Histories episode “Space is the Place: Unexplained Encounters in South Texas,” visual artist Luis Valderas presents a collection of sculpture pieces collectively exhibited as “Tezcatlipoca: An Interpretation of Azteca Intergalactic Ambassadors.” This exhibit centrally features his Styrofoam and wood piece “White Rocket Tezcalipoca” (2003), which considers icons of present day-architecture, space travel and commonly discarded materials available and what they mean to our future as a species. With the expansive problem of waste as a result of our consumerist global culture, humans face an ominous future—much like the humans in the MesoAmerican creation stories featuring Tezcatlipoca, child of Ometeotl (Lord/Lady of Duality) who presided over the North. As White Tezcatlipoca, he presided over the West and represented light, mercy, and the wind. Tezcatlipoca also represented judgement and was said to prey upon travelers at night on the road at crossroads tearing them to shreds as the jaguar.
Valderas has combined wood, paper mache and styrofoam pulled out of trash dumpsters to fabricate a futuristic version of Tezcatlipoca, which rises out of an agave-like form on top of a skyscraper structure and wields arms made of rockets, accented with an aura reimagined from the discarded styrofoam. “White Rocket Tezcatlipoca” augurs a future where science and global awareness will become paramount to the survival of humans. Alongside this central piece, Valderas will also exhibit several other small, whimsical sculptures juxtaposing the pre-Columbian and the robotic, collectively imagining a Chicanx futurism.
“Tezcatlipoca: An Interpretation of Azteca Intergalactic Ambassadors” will open Monday, August 6th at 6pm and run through Friday, August 10th at 5pm. Exhibit can also be viewed virtually, here:

For more information on the work of Luis Valderas, please visit luisvalderasartist.com or email him at macuiltochtli005@gmail.com

The Exquisite Costume Raffle

bACKGROUND 2

This summer, take part in our monthly raffle!

Enter to win any of three (or all three!) gorgeous butterfly headpieces hand-crafted by URBAN-15 Artistic Director Catherine Cisneros. Tickets are $10 per chance. Next drawing will be Friday, August 31st, 2018.

 

Piece #1 is a Butterfly Crown with Blue Fairy LightsCrown Butter Collage
Click button below for a chance to win this piece!

Raffle Ticket Button

Piece #2 is a Butterfly Headband Lit with a Multicolored Blinking Light
Mia
Click button for a chance to win this item!

Raffle Ticket Button

Piece #3 is a Butterfly Sunhat with Net Ruffle and Leather Chin Strap
Hat Collage
Click button to enter for a chance to win this piece!

Raffle Ticket Button

Enter today to win any (or all) of these three beautiful items. Drawing will be held  Friday, August 18, 2018.

Space is the Place: Unexplained Encounters in South Texas

View the archived episode by clicking on the image below!

August Screenshot

Just 45 minutes up the road from San Antonio, Seguin, Texas is the birthplace of the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON), one of the preeminent international organizations for UFO research in the world. Closer to home, Olmos Basin in San Antonio is similarly storied as a locational hub for UFO sightings and encounters with extraterrestrial life. August’s episode of Hidden Histories delves into the history of close encounters in South and Central Texas and efforts to understand them, featuring guest commentary by Ken Jordan of the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON); Rev. John Fluth of SETI@home; and Whitley Strieber, author of the Communion book series.

As part of the city’s calendar of Tricentennial arts activities, Hidden Histories is a monthly, magazine-format video series that pursues and preserves the stories, lives, and places that make San Antonio an inspiring cultural treasure. Over the course of 2018, Hidden Histories will premiere 12 monthly screenings live in our studio, free of charge. Each screening highlights archival interviews with community leaders; significant performances by musicians, dancers and poets; interactions with working artists; lost documentaries; forgotten narrative films; and vintage discussions of important community issues. Live screenings are supplemented by interviews and discussions with participants, family members of those featured, and field experts. Following each live screening, video segments are archived online for 24/7 access.

For more information on the Hidden Histories series, or to view previous installments, please visit http://hiddenhistories.tv/

All live and online screenings of Hidden Histories are free of charge. Live screenings take place at the URBAN-15 studio (2500 S. Presa 78210) at 7pm on the first Monday of the month. Online screenings can also be viewed live at https://urban15.org/live-stream. Afterwards, episodes are archived online at http://hiddenhistories.tv/archives/

Hidden Houses: Neighborhood Histories of Removal and Resistance

View the archived episode by clicking the image below!

July Screenshot

Mary Jane Diaz in back of Pecos St house EDITED

Vista Verde neighborhood, bisected by IH-35 and removed by Urban Renewal in the 1970s. Source: Personal Collection of Mary Jane Diaz

Like many cities around the world, San Antonio is a city paradoxically founded on removals, erasures, and writings over, beginning with the displacement of Indigenous languages and lifeways to more contemporary histories of Urban Renewal and downtown redevelopment. Curated by Marisol Cortez, Ph.D. of Deceleration, “Hidden Houses” examines key moments in San Antonio’s history of removing homes and entire neighborhoods from view, as well as the resistance to these removals on the part of residents. As recalled via interviews with people who grew up in places like Baptist Settlement, Hemisfair, Vista Verde, Cementville, the Our Lady of Sorrows neighborhood, and more recently Mission Trails Mobile Home Community and Soapworks/Towne Center Apartments, this episode considers the erasures that haunt the contemporary urban landscape and our collective memory as a city. UTSA Public Administration professor Heywood Sanders and retired UTSA professor of Political Science Rodolfo Rosales provide additional commentary.

 

Toudouze Eviction 21

Eviction of Mary Toudouze and family from their home at 123 Wyoming, removed through Urban Renewal to create Hemisfair ’68. Source: San Antonio Light

As part of the city’s calendar of Tricentennial arts activities, Hidden Histories is a monthly, magazine-format video series that pursues and preserves the stories, lives, and places that make San Antonio an inspiring cultural treasure. Over the course of 2018, Hidden Histories will premiere 12 monthly screenings live in our studio, free of charge. Each screening highlights archival interviews with community leaders; significant performances by musicians, dancers and poets; interactions with working artists; lost documentaries; forgotten narrative films; and vintage discussions of important community issues. Live screenings are supplemented by interviews and discussions with participants, family members of those featured, and field experts. Following each live screening, video segments are archived online for 24/7 access.

Loil and Estella Ellison, early 1930s

Loil and Estella Ellison from Baptist Settlement, razed in 1940 to create whites-only public housing. Source: UTSA Special Collections

For more information on the Hidden Histories series, or to view previous installments, please visit http://hiddenhistories.tv/

All live and online screenings of Hidden Histories are free of charge. Live screenings take place at the URBAN-15 studio (2500 S. Presa 78210) at 7pm on the first Monday of the month. Online screenings can also be viewed live at https://urban15.org/live-stream. Afterwards, episodes are archived online at http://hiddenhistories.tv/watch/

labella valenzuela 9.16.14 - tina walters' children, after pic was taken they were homeless for a month

Labella and Valentina Valenzuela, displaced from Mission Trails Mobile Home Community in 2014. Source: San Antonio Express News

Two Public Performances Honoring La Madre Tierra

This June, in celebration of seasonal cycles of repetition and change, URBAN-15 presents TWO FREE open-air performances in public spaces around the city:
U-15 Solstice Performance 2017
Summer Solstice Performance
Thursday, June 21 at 2pm
Long-Term Parking Garage Atrium, San Antonio International Airport (9800 Airport Blvd 78216)

Choreographer, dancer, and URBAN-15 Artistic Director Catherine Cisneros will present her 17th annual Summer Solstice performance within the lighted squares of Christopher Janney’s “Passing Light” solar sculpture. “Passing Light” incorporates large plexiglass squares that from above project a grid of colors onto the passageway surface. Once a year, at 2pm on the Summer Solstice, the lighted grids align with the painted grids on the floor for 90 seconds as the sun passes directly overhead. Cisneros has created a solo dance piece that exploits the changing colors penetrating the environment. Her movements are designed to bring a ceremonial awareness of our planet’s humble travels within a celestial clock, evoking the elaborate rituals performed by the ancient Egyptians, Aztecs, Celts, Mayans, Hindis, Incas and others to make visible the moment of solar zenith.

global water dances - deirdre

Reflections on the Oceans Beneath
Saturday, June 23 at 8pm
The Blue Hole at Headwaters Sanctuary (4503 Broadway 78209)

Carnaval de San Anto will present “Reflections on the Ocean Beneath,” a choreographed contemplation on the renewable spirit of the subterranean water that grounds the city. With costume pieces featuring various natural and supernatural elements (grasses, flowers, rivers, mermaids), this ensemble performance piece is a quiet study of repetitive cycles, both internal and universal, for dancers and sound, held at the headwaters of the the San Antonio River.

For directions to the Headwaters Sanctuary, please click here.

We request your attendance at either or both of these highly visual celebrations–camera and video welcome! Event is rain or shine. For more information prior to the event, email events@urban15.org or call (210) 736-1500.  Once on-site, call (210) 393-2310 for information.