Arbol de la Vida | Texas Public Radio

Arbol de la Vida

Norma Martinez / Texas Public Radio

Public art is typically defined as artwork that enhances public spaces. But what happens when you involve the public in the creation of public art? That’s the case with a giant tree of life that is not only a jewel for an area mission, but an expression of San Antonio’s ranching history.

Norma Martinez

Artists and members of the community are coming together to create a massive public art installation for the San Antonio River Foundation.  Participants all have

a special connection to San Antonio and the Mission San Francisco de la Espada, which was built in 1731. 

TPR has been following the creation of  Arbol de la Vida: Voces de Tierra (


Public art is often something you may find on a street corner or in a park.   But what makes it public?    Some San Antonio citizens are finding out as they help plan for a piece of public art that will be installed on one of the most historic stretches of their city.

On a sunny, humid April weekend, a group of about 40 community members gathers at Blue Star Contemporary, a San Antonio contemporary art space along the river.  Artist Margarita Cabrera asked them here to share stories of San Antonio, its missions, and its ranches.