#4 - Comprando y Prestando
Location: 1424 Guadalupe St.
Dimensions: 42'9" x 14'6"
Original date: May 1996
Original artist: Mary Helen Herrera
Restoration date: 2007
Restoration artist: Ricardo Islas
Restoration crew: Cardee Garcia, Gerry Garcia, David Blancas, Ruth Buentello, Alvaro Ramirez, Patrick Luna, Alejandro Garcia, Victor "Supher" Zarazua
Both the original and restored mural feature an arc with a scene of indigenous people participating in an exchange. Two people in headdresses stand on either side of the arc. In the original mural, the exchange scene is dominated by corn: everyone is trading in corn or gourds, and both figures in headdresses hold corn. In the restored mural, items of exchange include jaguar pelts, ceramics, textiles, deer, and fish, as well as corn, gourds, and vegetables. Artist wanted to represent Native American people from all over the continent. To select images, the artists asked Native American friends about traditional objects of exchange and also relied on American Indians of Texas (AIT) for information. The two figures on either side of the mural are distinctly Aztec, with the man on the left holding corn and the woman on the right blowing into a conch shell.
The top of both murals displays a poem by Mary Helen Herrera:
This is the way of our people
Mary Helen Herrera painted the original mural in 1996. The building was originally Guadalupe Grocery and Cafe. In 2007, artist Ricardo Islas travelled from San Diego to San Antonio to restore Comprando y Prestando as a Muralist in Training. When Islas had to leave town early, Gerry and Cardee Garcia took over the mural project. Once finished, the mural was blessed jointly with the Trinity St. mural, with community members processing from Guadalupe to Trinity to Inner City Development. Because the mural sits on the corner intersection of a busy street, it has been damaged over time by car exhaust, car crashes, and graffiti and needs periodic restoration.
About the Artists
Gerry and Cardee Garcia (adapted from 2004 mural blessing program) - Gerardo Q. Garcia and Cardee A. Garcia were both born in San Antonio. They were both involved in theatrical, artistic, and extracurricular activities throughout high school, and both belong to families of artists. After graduating in 1998, the couple got married. Gerry became a professional tattoo artist and began to pursue his Bachelors degree in Art with a minor in Drama from Our Lady of the Lake University. He successfully completed his studies in May 2003, due in great part to the love and support of his wife and partner Cardee. Throughout Gerry’s years in college, Cardee was forever by his side, learning and refining her own artistic skills as well. Gerry served as San Anto Cultural Arts’ Community Mural Program (CMP) Coordinator from 2006-2009. Gerry and Cardee have been instrumental as volunteers and crew members in producing numerous murals for San Anto, including Cultura y Revolucion, Dualidad, Raza Unida, Lideres de la Comunidad, You are not Forgotten, Brighter Days, Trinity St., All the Difference, La Musica de San Anto, and El Poder de Muralismo: Cuentos Son Arte. Now the couple works together at Calaveras Tattoos on St. Mary’s Street.