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Contemporary at Blue Star Announces Honorees for its 34th Annual Red Dot

This year’s Red Dot will take place on November 13, 2024

Pricing Your Work and Red Dot Q&A: Friday, April 19, 2024, from 12–1pm | Register Here

Red Dot Artist Open Call: Deadline: May 1, 2024, at 11:59pm | Learn More

Red Dot Art Sale: Wednesday, November 13, 2024, time TBA

Red Dot Show On View: November 13, 2024–January 5, 2025

For over three decades, the Contemporary at Blue Star has presented its signature fundraiser, Red Dot, to foster connections between local artists and our community of art supporters. For its 34th year, the Contemporary will recognize the significant contributions of people that have shaped our cultural community in significant ways:

Our Honorary Artist for this year’s Red Dot is Mark Hogensen. Originally from Portland, Oregon, Hogensen relocated to San Antonio in 1987 to pursue an MFA in studio art at the University of Texas at San Antonio. Hogensen’s artistic practice draws influence from his former career as an architect, utilizing heightened perspective to create images that evoke movement in bold paintings, or recreating everyday objects with layers of hatching, for example. Hogensen is a longtime supporter of the Contemporary, as both an artist and former member of its Board of Directors. His commitment to art expands beyond his personal practice, through his career as an art professor at Palo Alto College (now retired). In honor of Hogensen’s selection as our artist honoree, we are thrilled to present our 2024 Fiesta Medal in tandem with this designation. The medal is inspired by Hogensen’s 2D and sculptural work.

Our Honorary Patrons Martha Martinez-Flores and Dr. Mike Flores are long-time supporters of the San Antonio art community. Through collecting from local artists and supporting art organizations, the couple is also dedicated to contributing to the cultural impact of San Antonio. A practicing artist and owner and creative director of MMCreative, Martha Martinez-Flores has felt deep connection and love to San Antonio since moving to the city 25 years ago — so much so that in 2020, she created a run of special addition prints, dedicating the proceeds to two community funds for students and families negatively impacted by COVID-19. Dr. Mike Flores, the first Hispanic Chancellor of Alamo Colleges, has served in his position for the last five years. The son of migrant farm workers, Dr. Flores’s strategic vision for the Alamo Colleges is to eliminate poverty through education and provide an accessible pathway to obtaining that education. Dr. Flores was named an Alamo City changemaker for his signature AlamoPROMISE program, the Alamo Colleges District’s tuition-free college initiative offering the promise of a quality college education free from financial burden. San Antonio College, the oldest Alamo Colleges campus, was established in 1925. Its Fine Art department began in 1955 and is widely recognized for playing a significant role in launching the arts careers of San Antonio’s most successful artists.

This year’s Arts Education Champion, the Kronkosky Charitable Foundation, creates profound good in Bandera, Bexar, Comal, and Kendall counties in Texas. As of 2020, the foundation had distributed $309.1 million to 435 different nonprofit organizations in Bexar and the surrounding counties, including significant contributions to art and culture organizations. The foundation has been a supporter of the Contemporary through the years, most recently with their generous support of the renovation of our Education Space and the investment in our growth through our youth arts education programs and organizational capacity.

This year’s Red Dot will take place at the Contemporary on the evening of Wednesday, November 13, 2024. A night devoted to San Antonio’s art community, the proceeds from this event support San Antonio’s longest-running nonprofit venue for contemporary art in San Antonio. The Red Dot Art Show, opening on the evening of Red Dot, will be on view through January 5, 2025, and will showcase many of San Antonio’s best. To be considered for the Red Dot Show, Bexar County artists can apply to the Red Dot Open Call until May 1, 2024, at 11:59pm.


Media Contact | Casie Lomeli
New Media and Communications Coordinator | (210) 263-1733

Dr. Mike Flores and Martha Martinez-Flores

2024 Fiesta Medal

Contemporary at Blue Star Announces 2024–2025 Berlin Resident Artists


San Antonio, TX (March 19, 2024)–Contemporary at Blue Star is excited to announce the artists selected for the 2024–2025 Berlin Residency at Künstlerhaus Bethanien: Heyd Fontenot, Sarah Fox, Beronica Gonzales, and Jason Willome.

The Berlin Residency Program was established in 2013 in part thanks to the efforts of the Contemporary’s Advisory Council member Dr. Angelika Jansen. Each year, the Contemporary selects four artists residing in Bexar County to take part in a three-month residency at the renowned Künstlerhaus Bethanien (KB). A non-profit organization that has earned a worldwide reputation for its international residency studio program, KB gives 25 artists from around the world residencies at their fully appointed facility in the heart of Berlin’s vibrant art scene. The Contemporary’s Berlin Residents are given a studio and living space, as well as access to workshops, exhibition opportunities, and studio visits with international curators. They are also featured in the dual language and internationally distributed BE magazine.

Annually, the Contemporary hosts an online Open Call process for artists to be considered for the Berlin Residency Program. The selection process is highly competitive, with a panel of jurors evaluating a pool of talented Bexar County artists. This year’s panel was comprised of Christopher Blay, Chief Curator at the Houston Museum of African American Culture; Dr. Angelika Jansen, Independent Curator and Contemporary at Blue Star Advisory Council Member; Mia Lopez, Curator of Latinx Art at the McNay Art Museum; Jacqueline Saragoza McGilvray, Curator and Exhibitions Director, Contemporary at Blue Star;  and Hiromi Stringer, Berlin Residency Program Alum Artist and Senior Lecturer of drawing and painting at the University of Texas at San Antonio.

“As an artist-centric organization, we are grateful to continue to provide unparalleled opportunities for artists in our community to grow. Now, after more than a decade of this international collaboration, we are excited to see how the residency not only supports individual artists but San Antonio at-large as the discoveries made in Berlin positively impact us all through the sharing of innovative ideas in thought-provoking exhibitions and in education programs, augmenting our cultural landscape.” – Mary Heathcott, Executive Director, Contemporary at Blue Star

Beginning this July, and through July 2025, each selected artist will attend one of four residency cycles at KB. Thanks to the support of the City of San Antonio’s Global Engagement Office, the artists will also travel to Darmstadt, Germany (a sister city of San Antonio) to meet with fellow artists and cultural leaders.


About the Artists

Heyd Fontenot (born 1964, Lake Charles, Louisiana) is a multidisciplinary artist.  He has inhabited a variety of artistic roles professionally including designer, art director, producer, while he was working with theatrical groups, retail businesses, and television & film production companies.  A lifelong painter and draftsman, he also developed a significant body of work in the 1990’s as an experimental filmmaker.  While film and video are still in his arsenal, Fontenot’s current studio practice is largely focused on figurative painting, drawing and installation.  The artist recruits his friends and artistic peers to model and has in this process created a comprehensive portrait of his community over the last two decades.   There is a particular effort in Fontenot’s work to reclaim the human body from mass media constructions and exploitations as well as conservative and/or religious assertions that the body is either shameful or inadequate.  Heyd is the former director of two exhibition spaces/residency programs in Texas:  CentralTrak in Dallas from 2011-2016 and Sala Díaz/Casa Chuck 2021-2023. His mid-career survey exhibition “The Very Queer Portraits of Heyd Fontenot,” traveled to the University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland), Rollins College (Winter Park, Florida), and Allegheny College (Meadville, Pennsylvania).  Fontenot is represented by Conduit Gallery in Dallas, Texas

Sarah Fox’s multi-media narratives and characters are created from embodied female experience. Stories of life, loss, sex, and love are told through corporeal hybrid creatures. The resulting puppet shows, cyanotypes, drawings and animations suggest a childlike fairytale but with an undercurrent of dark symbolism. Her work has been shown throughout Texas, as well as in the Kinsey Institute (Bloomington, Indiana), Field Projects Gallery (New York, New York), Espacio Dörffi (Lanzarote, Canary Islands), Bedsetter Art Fair (Vienna, Austria), and Casa Lu (Mexico City). In 2019 she was a recipient of a Sustainable Arts Foundation grant that allowed her to live and work at the Women’s Studio Workshop in NY with her son. Fox was raised in Houston, Texas and currently lives and works in San Antonio, Texas with her 6-year old son, William. Fox received her BA from Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas, and her MFA from University of Texas at San Antonio. She is a Lecturer at Texas State University. She also runs the Nature of Art summer camp for young artists in conjunction with San Antonio River Foundation.

Beronica Gonzales’s work engages with the passage of time and the ways in which both found and created objects can preserve moments in time, treating these objects as vessels for ever-evolving personal sentiments. By repurposing found materials and reproducing her personal effects in her work, she aims to preserve her subjects and create memorials to the mundane that express and resist the erosion of time on her objects and her connections to them. Beronica Gonzales is from San Antonio, Texas. She earned her BFA in Drawing and Painting with a double minor in Art History and Psychology from the University of North Texas in 2021. In 2023, Gonzales received the Clare Hart DeGolyer Memorial Fund Award from the Dallas Museum of Art. She was the Cluley Projects Inaugural Open Call recipient in 2022. Her work has been featured in New American Paintings and exhibited in various spaces throughout Texas.

As an interdisciplinary artist with a focus on exploring the associative properties of materials, Jason Willome has developed a diverse body of work that is deeply rooted in an exploration of the boundaries of painting and drawing, navigating the tension between illusionistic denial and assertion of surface. His recent works, depicting disaster and wreckage, challenge conventional representation, transforming space into fantasy that reflects the softened reality of the current moment. Jason’s latest projects delve into the nature of self and seek to explore philosophical interpretations of human consciousness and our connection to the universe. These frameworks examine the liminal realm between the mental and physical, drawing inspiration from childhood explorations and the metaphorical implications of trepanation and astronomy. This new work seeks to investigate the nature of humanity’s enduring pursuit of transcendence, whether by delving into inner realms or gazing outward into the boundless cosmos in search of connection and understanding. Jason was born in rural Texas and earned an MFA from the University of Colorado Boulder. He has exhibited nationally and internationally and works as a Professor of Instruction in the School of Art at the University of Texas at San Antonio.


The Contemporary is grateful for the generous support from Bexar County, the Brown Foundation, Inc., the City of San Antonio Department of Arts and Culture, the Capital Group Companies Charitable Foundation, the Kronkosky Charitable Foundation, and the Texas Commission on the Arts. For ongoing support, we are incredibly appreciative of James Lifshutz and the Lifshutz Family, our Board of Directors and Advisory Council, and Contemporary Members and Donors.

Support for the Berlin Residency also comes from the City of San Antonio Global Engagement Office, and our Berlin Brunchers.



Media Contact | Casie Lomeli
New Media and Communications Coordinator | (210) 263-1733

116 Blue Star | San Antonio, TX 78204
p: 210.227.6960 |
@contemporarysa #InspireNurtureInnovate

Blue Star Contemporary Announces New Name, Graphic Identity, and Website

This October, we proudly announce our new name, CONTEMPORARY AT BLUE STAR, along with the launch of our new logo and website!

Since its origin, our institution has operated under many names, but our promise to the community to serve as an artist-centric home for contemporary art in San Antonio has remained unchanged. We are delighted to enter a new era of reinvention and positive change while continuing our mission to inspire, nurture, and innovate through contemporary art.

Blue Star Contemporary Announces New Identity FINAL

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The Artist’s Digest featuring Hye-Ryoung Min

The Artist’s Digest featuring Hye-Ryoung Min

July 31, 2020


“The moment when I write in my diary there must be a distortion and when I reread, digest, and then make a photograph out of that memory there must be another, a second, distortion. That’s why the memory is interesting for me and also at the same time that’s why it’s cruel for us. For me, how it distorts depending on who sees and when and which situation has been taken–it’s very interesting and that’s a very important element in my work.”

-Hye-Ryoung Min

Hye-Ryoung Min (center), with artist James Beard and Sarah Welch (left), and BSC’s Curator and Exhibitions Manager, Jacqueline Saragoza McGilvray (right).


Hello everyone,

How has your summer been? Summer for many people is a time for making lasting memories, long days, summer break from school, family vacations, cookouts, and simply having a moment to slow down and spend time outside, with yourself or with those close to you. With so many activities and in person socializing on hold, the respite and joys of summertime may be harder to come by. Have you found new ways to engage in your favorite past times or nurtured new interests during this time?

Hye-Ryoung’s Re-membrance of the Remembrance was developed around processes of revisiting old memories, starting with her journals. If your strictly homebound or busier than ever with the demands of life right now here are a few prompts to engage with the themes of the Hye-Ryoung’s work:

1.Spend a few minutes at the end of the day, writing in a journal, making an audio recording, writing notes in your phone, on your social media account, or gathering physical mementos, to create a diary and record your memories, things that seem both significant and trivial. You never know what may become important with the distance of time.

2.Have old journals? Take the time to reread them and reflect on how you’ve grown and your perspective on things has changed. Revisit a place you wrote about or send a note to a person who made a significant, positive impact on your life, even if you cannot send the letter.

3.Are there smells or sounds that remind you of a place, a person, a memory? Take a moment to engage your senses to awaken your memories and emotions. Smell cinnamon and think about your grandmother adding it to her coffee or stand barefoot in the driveway, listening to cicadas at sunset, just as you did at the end of a long, hot day playing outside.

Add the most recent episode of The Artist’s Digest featuring Hye-Ryoung Min to your Apple podcast queue or listen below. This is the last weekend to see her work in person at BSC (by appointment), but you can still get your hands on one of her monographs of the project.

Want to revisit the opening reception from February’s First Friday? Find photos on our Facebook page!

Also available in response to Hye-Ryoung’s work is this exhibition activity.


Jacqueline Saragoza McGilvray

Quarantine Diaries

Blue Star Contemporary’s MOSAIC Student Artists add new artwork to online, Quarantine Diaries.

While BSC’s MOSAIC Studio has remained closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the MOSAIC Student Artists have remained busy working on artworks inspired by their time in isolation. Sharing their work and getting feedback in daily facilitated Zoom sessions, the Student Artists developed an online exhibition inspired by this historic, challenging time.

Featuring the latest Quarantine Diaries entries by Piper Bangs, Savannah Plaza-Flores, and Arianna Rosales.



Piper Bangs, Heading Out, 2020. Oil on canvas. 18″ x 24″

This painting is a portrait of my sister dressed to go out and adjusting her mask, made by our mother. I wanted to document how masks, a simple piece of fabric, have become eerie staples in our everyday lives while signifying the presence of the COVID-19 pandemic. –Piper Bangs




Savannah Plaza-Flores, Feathers flowing with pride, 2020. Acrylic on canvas, 16″ x 20”


When I started working on this painting it was June, pride month. I was celebrating two years sense I came out to my family, which was something very hard for me to do. When I found the courage to tell my mother it had felt like this huge weight off my chest, I felt as light as a feather, I felt like I was finally myself. –Savannah Plaza-Flores


Savannah Plaza-Flores, Heart of Gold, 2020. Acrylic on canvas, 9″ x 12″


Growing up my mother always told me, “You have such a big heart, Savannah Marie, a Heart of Gold.” Even with all the chaos going on around me, all the hurt, the slaps, the scratches and stabs to my heart, done by the world and the people in it, I still open my heart and have the Heart of Gold my mother once told me I had. –Savannah Plaza-Flores




Arianna Rosales, Loss of Innocence, 2020. Prismacolor on paper, 9″ x 12″


This piece is a reflection of time, before and during quarantine. The simplicity of a Valentine’s bear now as a disturbance. –Arianna Rosales

Quarantine Diaries

Blue Star Contemporary’s MOSAIC Student Artists debut new exhibition online, Quarantine Diaries.

While BSC’s MOSAIC Studio has remained closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the MOSAIC Student Artists have remained busy working on artworks inspired by their time in isolation. Sharing their work and getting feedback in daily facilitated Zoom sessions, the Student Artists developed an online exhibition inspired by this historic, challenging time.

Featuring new work by Piper Bangs, Aiden Hobbs, Savannah Plaza-Flores, Julian Moreno, Victoria Rodriguez, and Leonardo Arteaga Toledo.

Quarantine Diaries was featured in “Dear Quarantine” by Deborah Martin in the San Antonio Express-News on May 31, 2020.


Aiden Hobbs, Miner 49er’, 2020. Prismacolor on paper, 9″ x 7.5″

“I created Miner 49er out of a sense of boredom, during our work from home time. I created my own imaginary character, inspired by cool robot characters in movies, such as Star Wars.”

Piper Bangs, Making Masks, 2020. Oil on panel, 8″ x 12″

This painting is a portrait of my mother’s hands while making masks. She has been making them for family and friends for free during quarantine, and I wanted to capture this kind action that’s unique to our strange circumstances, in a work of art. –Piper Bangs

Savannah Plaza-Flores, Abstract, 2020. Acrylic on canvas, 16″ x 20″

When my Father bought our first home, we didn’t have any more than a couch, box of movies, a picture frame, a TV and a lava lamp. The nights I couldn’t sleep, I would stare at the lava lamp, watching all the different shapes floating around. These shapes had always calmed me down and fascinated me. –Savannah Plaza-Flores

Julian Moreno, The Spector, 2020. Acrylic on canvas, 11″ x 14″

This piece is a narrative on the current, social political activity. It reflects those who do not use their voice, who do not stand up for anything. They sit on the sidelines and watch, not caring about these issues because it does not directly affect them, when in reality it affects us all. –Julian Moreno

Victoria Rodriguez, Isolation, 2020. Prismacolor on paper, 11.5″ x 14″

While being in isolation for so long, I’ve begun to feel a little out of my mind mentally, and my dreams have become more vivid. It feels like my mind is stretched thin and exhausted. Contrasting those feelings with bright colors associated with more positive feelings, I feel will draw the viewer’s attention to my work. –Victoria Rodriguez

Leonardo Arteaga Toledo, Las Primas, 2020. Ink on paper, 9″ x 10.8″

I found a picture of my little cousins that took me back to past times, to my grandparents’ house, where we played together. I tried to capture that feeling with this drawing. –Leonardo Arteaga Toledo

Leonardo Arteaga Toledo, Repression, 2020. Ink on paper, 12″ x 9″

I participated in a community theater group in Mexico where we created a play about children’s rights. This is one of the main characters, an authority figure, that represses the children from expressing themselves. –Leonardo Arteaga Toledo



The Artist’s Digest featuring Sarah Welch

The Artist’s Digest featuring Sarah Welch

May 6, 2020

Hello readers, viewers, art lovers!

Check out our most recent episode of The Artist’s Digest featuring Sarah Welch. Her exhibition Giveth and Taketh is currently installed in our Project Space. While you can’t see the work in person right now, you can dive into a video interview, listen to the podcast, and enjoy photographs of Sarah’s work. Find the audio episode in this blog post or on Apple Podcasts. Sarah’s zines and prints are available for purchase here. Want to revisit the opening reception from February’s First Friday? Find photos on our Facebook page!

Also available in response to Sarah’s work is this exhibition activity and a free print/coloring page from the artist!


Jacqueline Saragoza McGilvray

The Artist’s Digest featuring Rand Renfrow

The Artist’s Digest featuring Rand Renfrow

April 2, 2020

Hi again,

For the next episode of The Artist’s Digest I am speaking with Rand Renfrow about his work in the exhibition More Findings. Check out the video or take a listen to the podcast included below on on Apple Podcasts. Once again images for the exhibition are included in this post. Enjoy and find our more about Rand and how he stays inspired.

Think Like An Artist!

Below are some prompts inspired by Rand and his works. Give them a try and send us your comments, drawings, and photos.

  1. Central to Rand’s practice is the documenting of the world around him by drawing, photographing, making lists, and taking notes. Walk around your house and write down new observations or try categorizing and creating a typology, like all the weeds in your backyard.
  2. Do you keep a sketchbook. For many artists this in an important part of their practice. As Rand shares this doesn’t have to only be drawings. It can be a note, a quote, a poem, a clipping, it can live on your phone or be photographs documenting the world around you to inspire new ideas.
  3. Rand created his own iconography of shapes as both drawings and sculptures in response to a list of describable emotions. The result is a new language of sorts which can be deciphered or even assigned new meaning as the viewer tries to discover what these icons are. Look at the list of emotions and try creating your own iconography. Did you make a list or typology for prompt number one? Try creating an iconography for it.
  4. Check out this lesson to dive deeper into thinking about representing emotion through icons and symbols.

Happy creating,

Jacqueline Saragoza McGilvray


The Artist’s Digest featuring Candace Hicks

The Artist’s Digest featuring Candace Hicks

March 23, 2020

Hi Everyone,

For the first episode of The Artist’s Digest I am speaking with Candace Hicks about her work in the exhibition Secret Passage and her practice. Check out the video or take a listen to the podcast included below. You can find images from the exhibition in this post too.

Think Like An Artist!

Below are some prompts inspired by Candace and her works. Give them a try and send us your comments, drawings, and photos.

  1. Draw and illustration for a poem or book you’ve read.
  2. Think of a coincidence that has stayed with you. Did it feel significant or hold any weight for you?
  3. Are there things you assign meaning to that may not have meaning to others?
  4. Candace refers to coincidence as a type of pattern and unique patterns are present in each cover of her soft sculpture works. Try drawing your own patterns. Simple geometric shapes and lines are a good place to start.
  5. Candace’s work is a reflection of our impulse to make a record, share our stories, and write our own story for ourselves. Do you keep a journal or records? Try starting one. Start with writing one to two sentences for each day. It can be anything!
  6. What is the importance of books to you?

Happy creating,

Jacqueline Saragoza McGilvray


*Opening reception photographs by Francisco Cortes. Installation photographs by Jacqueline Saragoza McGilvray