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Artist Foundation Of San Antonio Provides The Sparks For Local Artistic Fire

There’s often more good art than there is money to pay for it, which is why the Artist Foundation of San Antonio was created. But what do they do?

“We have awarded over $500,000 to over 92 San Antonio Artists," said founder Patricia Pratchett about what they’ve given away since forming in 2005. Can anyone apply?

“If you live in Bexar County, then you’re eligible" Prachett said.

A national and local judging process awards $5,000 prizes to artists who have great ideas but not the money to manifest them. She cites UTSA professor, guitarist and award-winner Matthew Dunne who used his prize money to write and record guitar music.

“And his compositions are played all over the world," Prachett said. "His project has had significant impact.”

Pratchett noted the specific variety of arts the grants fund.

"I want to emphasize that we have eight different disciplines," she said.

There’s a top prize awarded by the Tobin Foundation, one that gives an additional $7,500.

Julia Langenberg is this year’s Tobin Grand Prize for Artistic Excellence winner.

“I started in Austin with an Aerial Dance Company dancing on the sides of buildings," Langenberg said.

I had to interrupt her at this point to be sure I'd heard her correctly. "Hold on—you said dancing on the sides of buildings?" I asked.

"Yes sir," she said.

She explained that they do so with ropes and harnesses.

“You can run alongside buildings and do flips and create choreography and do duets and trios and all of that,” Langenberg said.

We’ll hear back from Langenberg when she reveals the high visibility project her Tobin Grand Prize Award money will fund.  

Artist Foundation of San Antonio monitors award winners, who are given the funds on a schedule as they produce the work they’ve promised to produce.

Jack Morgan can be reached at jack@tpr.org and on Twitter at @JackMorganii