Three new summer exhibitions at Blue Star Contemporary

Blue Star Contemporary unveils three new summer exhibitions on July 1, 2022. Photo: google

Blue Star Contemporary (BSC), San Antonio’s first and longest- running contemporary art nonprofit, proudly unveils three new summer exhibitions opening to the public on First Friday July 1, 2022 at 6p.m. Andreas Till: De Ami, focuses on the influence of the presence of American troops in artist, Andreas Till’s, hometown Heidelberg, Germany. The Other Side, is a small selection of films by Faezeh Nikoozad, Aki Pao-Chen Chiu, Breech Asher Harani, and Fumiko Kikuchi . Fake Plastic Forest features photographic and lens-based work by France Dubois, Annette Isham, Işık Kaya, and Leigh Merrill. The exhibitions will be on view through October 9, 2022. (Blue Star Contemporary, 2022)

ANDREAS TILL: DE AMI focuses on the influence of the presence of American troops in artist, Andreas Till’s, hometown Heidelberg, Germany and the relationship between Germans and Americans between 1945 and 2013 born out of this presence. His research is based on found material from various archives such as the Rose Library in Atlanta and the Archive of the City of Heidelberg as well as various personal collections. The artist’s personal collection chronicles a lifelong friendship between former editor and publisher of the Atlanta Constitution, Ralph Emerson McGill and Till’s grandmother Else Volkwein. 

Andreas Till (b. 1984) holds a M.A. in Photographic Studies from the Dortmund University of Applied Sciences and Arts in Germany. In 2010, he received a Fulbright scholarship to the Fine Art Photography and Integrated Media program (M.F.A.) of Ohio University in Athens, OH. He currently lives in Hamburg, Germany where he works as a photo editor.

THE OTHER SIDE brings together a small selection of films referencing ideas of transitions and events that foundationally change someone, i.e., “to be on the other side of something.” Works also allude to ideas of mortality and the spiritual concept of metaphysical selves entering a new plane.

This group of films was selected from Darmstädter Sezession’s 2021 prize shortlist for its collaborative Projection/Projektion grants and screenings programs with BSC. This will be the first screening of these films in San Antonio. 

Featured Films 
Asb by Faezeh Nikoozad 
Translating Erasure by Aki Pao-Chen Chiu
BINTANA (Window) by Breech Asher Harani
I know where you are right now by Fumiko Kikuchi

FAKE PLASTIC FOREST features the work of France Dubois, Annette Isham, Işık Kaya, and Leigh Merrill; contemporary photographers and lens-based artists dealing with themes of artifice, truth and fiction, and the theatricality of our interactions with nature. Collectively these themes relate to ideas of preservation, the transcendent practice of experiencing nature, and seeking representations of nature to process and release intense events and emotions such as fear and grief. Our various relationships with nature are revealing of personal and collective selves. The urgency to reflect on these relationships is ever-present as we globally contend with humanity’s impact on our environment and consider transnational identities. The selected artists can be considered in the context of numerous other female photographers throughout the history of the medium who have used their environments, both natural and human made, as the site/studio where the work is made, and a part of the subject. These artists used the context of vast landscape, forests, and trees as well as fabricated, nature-inspired spaces, as sites and pivotal subjects for addressing themes such as psychology and mysticism.

Blue Star Contemporary, 116 Blue Star, San Antonio, TX 78204

Blue Star Contemporary is an anchoring cultural institution in San Antonio and a destination for residents and tourists alike. Located along the banks of the San Antonio Riverwalk, BSC is a central highlight between the bustle of downtown and the UNESCO World Heritage San Antonio Missions. BSC has remained true to its artist-centric foundation alongside this fiscal and programmatic growth. BSC is San Antonio’s first WAGE-certified organization, committed to transparent and equitable payments to artists for their creative contributions to BSC’s exhibitions and education outreach programs. Through its commitment to artists with a social practice, tuition-free youth arts education programs, and community-centric fundraising, BSC is dedicated to equity and social justice in all its endeavors.


Whataburger awards students over $2M in scholarships

Whataburger awards 940 students across 14 states over $2M in scholarships. Photo: Whataburger

As part of Whataburger’s support for students in its communities, the brand has given 940 students across 14 states over $2M in scholarship funding for the 2022-2023 academic school year. (Whataburger, 2022)

The company’s two scholarship programs—the Whataburger Feeding Student Success Scholarship and the Whataburger Family Foundation Scholarship are part of the brand’s commitment to help students pursuing college, university and not-for-profit vocational education achieve their dreams.

  • Whataburger has given 940 scholarships worth over $2 million to students across its 14-state footprint through the company’s two scholarship programs—the Whataburger Feeding Student Success Scholarship and the Whataburger Family Foundation Scholarship.
  • $600,000 in scholarship funding was given to students, non-employees and employees, as a part of the Whataburger Feeding Student Success Scholarship and contribution from Dr Pepper.
  • An additional $1.5M in scholarships was awarded exclusively to Whataburger employees and their dependents as part of the Whataburger Family Foundation Scholarship.
  • Applications will reopen in December for the Whataburger Feeding Student Success Scholarship.

The magic of Whataburger started on August 8, 1950, in a tiny burger stand in Corpus Christi, Texas. An entrepreneur named Harmon Dobson set out to build a burger so delicious that customers would take that first bite and say, “What a burger!” Today, Whataburger is known for delicious burgers, big flavor, and the brand’s pride in taking care of its guests, communities and employees, known as Family Members. Orange Spirit Week celebrates its founding and the foundation for success that Dobson created. Today, Whataburger is headquartered in San Antonio, Texas, with more than 890 locations across the country.

Teddy and the Rough Riders’ new single from upcoming new album

Teddy and the Rough Riders skip town to start a farm on groovy new single ‘Livin in the Woods.’ Their new LP, Teddy and the Rough Riders, will be out July 1, 2022. Courtesy photo, used with permission.

Teddy and The Rough Riders is probably your favorite country band’s favorite country band. With a sound that sits somewhere in the middle of “down-home” and “far out,” the Nashville-born-and-bred band proudly and prolifically drops retro-sounding, feel-good songs that would fit right in on a Grand Ole Opry radio broadcast or a late-night slot at Bonnaroo. Masked alt-country darling Orville Peck decided to take Teddy and The Rough Riders on a nationwide tour this year that included a stop at the band’s hometown Ryman Auditorium—a bucket list venue for performers from around the world—and current queen of the country underground, Margo Price, loves the band so much she decided to produce their upcoming LP, Teddy and The Rough Riders. On July 1, via Appalachia Record Co., that great uniting can begin with the release of the Price-produced LP Teddy and The Rough Riders. (Teddy and The Rough Riders, 2022)

The band recently released their first preview of the album with “Livin in the Woods,” a grand idea of leaving town and disappearing into the woods to start a farm with friends. The track premiered with The Boot who hailed the band and called the trio, “a must watch act to watch in 2022.” Fans can hear for themselves by checking out “Livin in the Woods” now at this link. Teddy and The Rough Riders can be digitally pre-ordered or pre-saved ahead of its July 1st release right here and physical pre-orders, including vinyl, can be found here. 

Up until the sessions for Teddy and the Rough Riders in 2019, the band—Jack Quiggins (vocals, guitar), Ryan Jennings (vocals, bass), Nic Swafford (drums), and Luke Schneider (pedal steel)—had mostly recorded at home. This was their first big studio effort with a producer, engineer, session players, and the goal of an audible fidelity change. After narrowing down their best demos, the band recruited Margo Price to produce because of her creative vision and “let’s roll” Neil Young-inspired recording philosophy. They rented out Club Roar, brought in engineer-producer Jake Davis and spent a few days holed up in the studio to capture the magic of the session. What resulted from those days of close collaboration in the studio on the final version of the album, mixed by Davis and mastered by John Baldwin, is some of the most original country rock to come from Nashville in a while.

In the years leading up to their new self-titled LP, Teddy and The Rough Riders have released a home-recorded EP and LP, and several singles, including a 7” record from Third Man Records. They have shared bills with artists such as Margo Price, Jeff the Brotherhood, and Soccer Mommy, and have been the backing band in most of Emily Nenni’s recordings and live shows. Musical collaborators include Skyway Man, Erin Rae, Sean Thompson, and David Leonard, among others. After years of touring, playing bars and recording a prolific back catalog of work, Teddy and The Rough Riders first “big studio” effort, produced by Margo Price, will be released on July 1 via Appalachia Record Co.



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Teddy and the Rough Riders release date

Television adaptation: ‘The Terminal List’ by Jack Carr

The television adaptation of ‘The Terminal List’ premieres on Amazon Prime Video on July 1, 2022. Photo: amazon

Jack Carr is a #1 New York Times bestselling author and former Navy SEAL. He is the author of “The Terminal List,” “True Believer,” “Savage Son,” “The Devil’s Hand,” and “In the Blood.” He is also the host of the Danger Close Podcast. In his debut novel “The Terminal List,” a Navy SEAL has nothing left to live for and everything to kill for after he discovers that the American government is behind the deaths of his team in this ripped-from-the-headlines political thriller. It has been adapted into an action thriller television series and will premiere on Amazon Prime Video on Friday, July 1, 2022. It stars Chris Pratt and consists of eight episodes. (amazon, 2022)

“The Terminal List” – On his last combat deployment, Lieutenant Commander James Reece’s entire team was killed in a catastrophic ambush. When those dearest to him are murdered on the day of his homecoming, Reece discovers that this was not an act of war by a foreign enemy but a conspiracy that runs to the highest levels of government. Now, with no family and free from the military’s command structure, Reece applies the lessons that he learned in over a decade of constant warfare toward avenging the deaths of his family and teammates. With breathless pacing and relentless suspense, Reece ruthlessly targets his enemies in the upper echelons of power without regard for the laws of combat or the rule of law.

Bakery Lorraine’s Fourth of July pies available for pre-order

Bakery Lorraine’s Buttermilk pie. Photo: Bakery Lorraine, used with permission.

To celebrate the Fourth of July next week, Bakery Lorraine has pies for pre-order for any Independence Day get-togethers. The bakery is offering an Apple pie, made with five different kinds of apples, and a Buttermilk pie topped with berries. The 9” pies are $28 each and serve eight. (Bakery Lorraine, 2022)

Orders can be made online for pickup at the following San Antonio locations: The Rim, Pearl and Medical Center. The pies are also available for pre-order at Bakery Lorraine’s Austin location at Domain NORTHSIDE. The last day for pre-orders is this Wednesday, June 29 at noon. Pick up for pre-ordered pies is Saturday, July 2 and Sunday, July 3. Additionally, a limited number of pies will be available in-store at the Pearl location only on Monday, July 4 on a first come, first served basis.

Photo: Bakery Lorraine, used with permission.

Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center announces Groupo Animo 2022 summer theater camp

Grupo Animo members Class of 2019: ‘Youth Nation Network.’ Photo: Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center, used with permission.

The Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center announces Grupo Animo 2022, a summer theater camp for students between the ages of 13 and 18 years old. This three-week theatrical camp is at no cost to students and will take place at the historic Guadalupe Theater, 1301 Guadalupe St, from July 5 to 22, 2022. Camp will take place Monday through Friday from 1p.m. to 5p.m. Its summer program will culminate with a student showcase created and performed by Grupo Animo company members on Saturday, July 23 at 7p.m. (Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center, 2022)  

Grupo Animo is the Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center’s resident youth theater company consisting of youth (ages 13-18) members from all backgrounds and areas of San Antonio and beyond. Under the mentorship of professional teaching artists and directors, Grupo Animo’s company members are guided through a three-week summer theater experience, allowing youth a platform to make their voices heard through thought-provoking, engaging, and culturally relevant, performance-based Teatro.  

“It is critical, even more so now in light of recent events in Uvalde, that students are taught to use their natural talents to creatively express themselves, working cooperatively to share their thoughts and feelings about the world they live in. We strive to provide a safe space for our members to feel comfortable no matter what race, sex, economic background, or sexual orientation. Lastly, we understand that through Chicano, Latino, and Native American arts and culture, we can revolutionize how we imagine the world.”  – Jorge Piña, Guadalupe Theater Manager.

Founded in 1993, Grupo Animo’s mission is to use teatro/theatre to instill an understanding of the value of culture, creativity, and community. Grupo Animo’s goal at the end of the program is to have taught students basic history and practice of teatro/theatre, acting, teamwork, poetry, creative writing, movement, and videography.

First annual Paella on the River Walk event by Ambler Texas Kitchen + Cocktails

Ambler Texas Kitchen + Cocktails is inside Hotel Contessa on the River Walk. Photo: Hotel Contessa, used with permission.

Ambler Texas Kitchen + Cocktails is bringing a taste of Spain to San Antonio with its first ever Paella on the River Walk Patio event on Thursday, June 30 from 6p.m. to 9p.m. In addition to authentic paella and sangria, Ambler will host guests for a performance from world-renowned flamenco guitarist Randy Cordero. There will be three different types of paella available including game paella (quail, pork belly, rabbit, Spanish chorizo), seafood paella (shrimp, mussels, clams, scallops), and vegetarian paella (bell peppers, artichokes, asparagus, peas, okra, sweet potato, vegetarian stock). Live paella cooking presentations will start at 6:30p.m. Tickets are now available for purchase in two different options, VIP and General Admission, but both feature all-you-can-eat paella. (Ambler Texas Kitchen + Cocktails, 2022)

VIP tickets are $100 per person and include:
• All-you-can-eat paella
• Complimentary valet parking
• All you can (responsibly) drink Sangria during the event
• Reserved table
• Access to entertainment
• Gift Bag
• Ticket for Raffle for a 2 night stay and experience at Hotel Contessa
• Designated VIP Badge

General Admission tickets are $50 per person and include:
• All-you-can-eat paella
• Complimentary valet parking
• Welcome drink – sangria
• Access to entertainment

Ambler Texas Kitchen + Cocktails
(Inside Hotel Contessa)
306 West Market Street
San Antonio, TX 78205
River Walk level

Photo: Hotel Contessa, used with permission.

New book release: ‘The House Across the Lake’ by Riley Sager

‘The House Across the Lake’ is Riley Sager’s new psychological/supernatural thriller. Photo: amazon

Riley Sager is The New York Times bestselling author of six novels, most recently “Home Before Dark” and “Survive the Night.” His first novel, “Final Girls,” has been published in 30 countries and won the ITW Thriller Award for Best Hardcover Novel. His latest book is “The House Across the Lake” was named a most anticipated summer book by USA Today, People, E! News, Cosmopolitan, PureWow,, CrimeReads, POPSUGAR, The Nerd Daily, BookTrib, Mystery Writers of America, Bookish, and Distractify. (amazon, 2022)

“The House Across the Lake” – Casey Fletcher, a recently widowed actress trying to escape a streak of bad press, has retreated to the peace and quiet of her family’s lake house in Vermont. Armed with a pair of binoculars and several bottles of bourbon, she passes the time watching Tom and Katherine Royce, the glamorous couple living in the house across the lake. They make for good viewing—a tech innovator, Tom is powerful; and a former model, Katherine is gorgeous.

One day on the lake, Casey saves Katherine from drowning, and the two strike up a budding friendship. But the more they get to know each other—and the longer Casey watches—it becomes clear that Katherine and Tom’s marriage is not as perfect as it appears. When Katherine suddenly vanishes, Casey immediately suspects Tom of foul play. What she does not realize is that there is more to the story than meets the eye—and that shocking secrets can lurk beneath the most placid of surfaces.
Packed with sharp characters, psychological suspense, and gasp-worthy plot twists, Riley Sager’s “The House Across the Lake” is the ultimate escapist read . . . no lake house required.

Guidance explores the reality of human behavior

Francesco Chen and Yu Chieh Chiu in Neysan Sobhani’s GUIDANCE. Photo, Good Deed Entertainment, used with permission.

The movie Guidance, directed by Neysan Sobhani and starring Sun Jia (Han Miao), Harry Song (Mai Zi Xuan) and Francesco Chen (Su Jie) was released in the US on VOD June 17 on all major platforms including Apple TV/iTunes, Amazon, Google Play, Vudu, XFinity Cable, and more. (Good Deed Entertainment, 2022)

Guidance – In the not-too-distant future, humanity slowly rebuilds itself a decade after The Great War. Believing that the ability to lie is the root cause of the devastating conflict, a tech entrepreneur creates a pill containing a nanotechnology app known as “Guidance” that allegedly will make everyone more enlightened. Once swallowed, an A.I. “installs” in the person’s nervous system and aids their ability to detect deception in other people among other enhancements. A young couple goes on a weekend retreat to the countryside and they begin to use Guidance. However, recent events have potentially compromised their trust in one another. With the tech in their bodies, the couple tries to subvert Guidance in the hopes of saving their relationship before it is too late.

This movie puts forth and examines the hypothetical question: can humanity truly ever be ready for absolute honesty? It sounds like an admirable quality for a society to have, especially one that is rebuilding after a war, but in reality, sometimes little white lies are necessary. Giving people the capability to detect deception in others is worthless if humanity itself does not wish to change. Even when the technology exists, people will still try to circumnavigate the system, similar to how some people can beat a lie detector. That is exactly what happens in this movie. As the young couple who initially try it discover, the quest for full honesty did more harm than a lie would have and their relationship remains on shaky ground. They were the initial Guidance testers and eventually it was also made available to the general public who apparently come to the same conclusion. To answer my initial question: it goes without saying that humanity is not ready for the repercussions of absolute honesty. It is mostly dialogue driven and the production value is excellent, particularly the visuals. Guidance is an excellent movie and like most science fiction movies, it explores the ethics of morality and controlling human behavior.

China, 2021, 93 minutes, in Mandarin Chinese with English subtitles

*Thank you to Emma Griffiths PR for an advance screening.*

Photo: Good Deed Entertainment, used with permission.

New horror movie: The Bloody Man

The Bloody Man will premiere on digital on July 12 before releasing on physical formats later. Photo: google

Wild Eye Releasing has acquired the rights to director Daniel Benedict’s The Bloody Man, a supernatural horror film reuniting A Nightmare On Elm Street 4 : The Dream Master stars Lisa Wilcox and Tuesday Knight. (Wild Eye Releasing, 2022)

Penned by Daniel and Casi Benedict, and produced by Red Serial Films, the film tells of a young boy who, after the death of his mother, becomes obsessed with a comic book she gave him that ultimately summons the ancient monster found in its pages.

Mercedez Varble, Dan Eardley, Jason Crowe, Roni Jonah and KateLynn E. Newberry join Wilcox and Knight in the film, which is said to encompass high-end production values and plays like a cocktail of A Nightmare On Elm Street, The Goonies, and Stranger Things. Wild Eye will premiere the film on digital on July 12 before releasing on physical formats later.



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The Bloody Man release date