The community is invited to join the City of San Antonio’s Department of Arts & Culture and City Council District 5 to celebrate the completion of the 2 new sculptures, “El Papalote” (The Kite) and “El Trompo” (The Top) on Tuesday, June 25, 2024 at 10:30 a.m. at the corner of W Commerce St & N Frio St, San Antonio, TX 78207. Parking will be available at Golden Star Cafe.

These sculptures, by San Antonio artist Joe R. Villareal, are monumental emblems of childhood play. Children’s games and nostalgia are central themes in Villarreal’s distinguished career. An artist since 1957, his work speaks to the rich multicultural heritage of San Antonio’s Westside.

About the art:

The kite (papalote) is made from the newspaper La Prensa. This newspaper was the first and oldest bilingual publication in the state of Texas (established in 1913). The trompo is a vintage top thrown from a string wound around its body. Players compete inside a circle drawn on the ground for the longest spin, to strike a central coin, and sometimes even perform tricks. The string coils toward the trompo’s apex as if it has been freshly spun in one of these friendly competitions.

The artist hopes each work is a reminder of fun-filled childhood afternoons.