Things to Do

Briscoe Western Art Museum in San Antonio Vividly Opens the Door to the American West

By  | 

There are so many stand-out exhibits that it isn’t easy to pick out any one particular thing which is most impressive about the Briscoe Western Art Museum in the Texas Hill Country. Located in San Antonio, the museum features a number of amazing displays, such as Santa Anna’s sword, on loan from the Enrique E. Guerra Collection, or a Blackfoot war shirt, circa 1890’s. There’s a lot to see at the museum which opened in 2013 and celebrates the American West through a diverse collection of art and artifacts.

Briscoe Western Art Museum in San Antonio Vividly Opens the Door to the American West

Photo: Facebook/The Briscoe Western Art Museum

For each visitor, the museum leaves them to form their own impressions on the works and pieces, and the place they may have held in the development of the American West, on the premise that it matters not from where each piece came, but that it’s there for people to see and interpret in their own way. The museum was developed at a cost of $32 million and took 10 years to come to fruition. Housed in a historic building along the River Walk, its experience lies in its representation of western art and displays and how they speak to each visitor, relating to their own history.

Briscoe Western Art Museum in San Antonio Vividly Opens the Door to the American West

Photo: Facebook/The Briscoe Western Art Museum

The building had first opened in 1930 as the central library for San Antonio and was later the Hertzberg Circus Museum. When the Briscoe Western Art Museum moved in, it restored the old library’s original art deco lobby as well as its plaster ceiling which is adorned with buffalo and has a border of Indian-head nickels. It takes a broad view of the American West and the artifacts and art on display range from iconic western cowboy images in paintings to artifacts used in battle during the fight for Texas’ independence. Once a visitor finds themselves immersed in the various collections, they’ll also feel transported back in time through the vividness of the exhibits, their portrayal of a time long since passed, and the development of the American West we’ve all read and dreamed about.

Page 1 of 2:12