UTSA Institute of Texan Cultures hosts 'Texans Head to Foot' exhibit

boots
boots
boots

From "Texans Head to Foot" exhibit, from top are boots of businessman B.J. "Red" McCombs, boots of newspaper columnist and author Heloise and boots of Gov. Ann Richards

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(Jan. 27, 2011)--The UTSA Institute of Texan Cultures will present "Texans Head to Foot," an exhibit featuring shoes, hats and accessories from famous and inspiring Texans, from Jan. 29 to May 1.

"Texans Head to Foot" features champions of education, sports, business, service and politics, science and medicine, the military and the arts. Their shoes and hats serve as a channel into their legacies and carry with them their experiences, beliefs and values. The exhibit honors the achievements of great Texans and inspires visitors to make their own contributions to the Lone Star State and beyond.

"Shoes and hats are more than just practical clothing items -- they are three-dimensional character sketches of their owners," said Sarah Gould, guest curator for the exhibit. "These shoes and hats carry inspiring stories of leadership, talent, faith and determination."

The exhibit features well-known Texans such as Lady Bird Johnson, David Robinson, Mary Kay Ash, Michael Dell, Red McCombs, Henry B. Gonzalez, Dan Rather and George Strait. Items never displayed before at the museum will include a hat and shoes from Tejano sensation Selena; a hat from music legend Buddy Holly; a hat, boots and cigar from entertainer Kinky Friedman and a hat and boots from pioneering trauma surgeon Red Duke.

Aside from celebrities, the exhibit features everyday people who have done extraordinary things, such as astronaut Bernard Harris, Texas Ranger Joaquin Jackson, Texas elementary teacher of the year Dan Leija, midwife Sister Angela Murdaugh, firefighter Kimberly Smith and Tech. Sgt. Michael P. Flores, an Air Force para-rescueman killed in the line of duty.

"It was important to include Texans who may not be well known, but whose lives have been fueled by passion and perseverance, and whose accomplishments have been undeniably inspirational," said Gould.

Guest curator Sarah Zenaida Gould received a doctorate in American studies from the University of Michigan. She is a former fellow at the National Museum of American History at the Smithsonian Institution, the Winterthur Museum and the American Antiquarian Society.

The Institute of Texan Cultures is on the UTSA HemisFair Park Campus, 801 E. Durango Blvd., a short distance from the Alamo and the River Walk. Hours are 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Monday-Saturday; noon-5 p.m., Sunday. Admission is $8 for adults (ages 12-64); $7 for seniors (ages 65+); $6 for children (ages 3-11); free with membership or UTSA or Alamo Colleges identification. For more information, call 210-458-2300 or visit TexanCultures.com.