The Case of the Missing 3 Ton Sculpture

NOTE: This post originally ran in my San Antonio Uncovered Blog. We got so much positive response that I thought I would post this story here also.

   One might wonder, how could a three ton sculpture go missing, disappearing from the 1968 World Fair's site? That was a question that many were asking after Hemisfair closed.

   Such was the case of Asteriskos,  a piece of modern art that was commissioned from New York sculpture Tony Smith by the Cato family for the fair. After Hemisfair closed, the piece, which sat between the Arena and the Convention Center, disappeared. It took a year for the piece to be rediscovered. Unfortunately, it was no longer intact.

   It seemed that Asteriskos was carted off after the fair by city workers who did not realize that it was art. It was blow torched into smaller pieces, fitted with wooden lids and turned into tool boxes and ice chests for afterwork beer parties at the Zarzmora Public Works Yard.

   The Cato family generously commissioned a replica from the artists and donated it to the city's McNay Art Institute where it sits today.

    For the rest of the world it is art. For us San Antonians, it is a beer party waiting to happen.

Asteriskos II today

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The Travis Club

Fire Strikes Former Scientology Mansion

UPDATE:  A few days after the fire, I decided to return to the former Scientology Mansion on Buckner Road to see if there was any hope of saving the abandoned building. See if you can come to the same conclusion I did.

Before the fire. The mansion, built in the 1940's, had also been a Bed and Breakfast, a Wedding chapel and a private home. It had been vacant for the last few years

The mansion during the fire

The mansion today


   This afternoon, the former Scientology Headquarters in East Dallas caught on fire.  Ironically, the vacant mansion sat on the edge of the Ash Creek neighborhood just of Buckner Road. The building was for sale in a neighborhood of modest homes and obviously in need of some repairs. It had been on the market for quite a few months.

   Here are a few photos I snapped of the fire

 The amount of firefighters on scene was staggering 

You can see two of the ladder trucks pumping water into the house. The one on the left is actually parked a block behind the mansion

Dallas Firefighters with oxygen tanks after leaving the house

 You can see some of the damage as the roof on the north wing is totally gone

Streams of water being dumped inside the mansion

Like my blog? You might enjoy my book, The Travis Club