Standing tall at nearly 65ft of the intersections of Alamo and Commerce streets in downtown San Antonio. La Antorcha de La Amistad is a symbol of cooperation and share of culture between the country of Mexico and the Alamo City. The sculptor Enrique Carbajal González better know, as Sebastian, is responsible for creating the big red abstract torch.The famous Mexican artist is known for massive steel and concrete sculptures playing off of geometric forms. He’s had created more than 200 monumental sculptures, and they can be found all over the globe, including Mexico City, Paris and Jerusalem.
The group, Asociación de Empresarios Mexicanos, commissioned the sculpture, a Texas non-profit composed of Mexican-American business owners and professionals that live in San Antonio and friends of Mexico. The Torch of Friendship was offered as gift from the Mexican government to the City of San Antonio in 2002. That same year, the artist, then-Mayor Edward D. Garza, and Secretary of Foreign Affairs for Mexico and political analyst Jorge Castañeda Gutman, unveiled the sculpture.
Sebastian describes the abstract sculpture as a torch rising from the ground, and a symbolization of two different actors—the United States of America and Mexico—running together. "Sometimes it is complex. Sometimes it is harmonious. But the two countries are always close and always with a complex friendship. That's what I am trying to express with this combination of forms.”
From whatever angle you see it, whether is from Losoya, Commerce St., Market St., or Alamo Streets. The sculpture represents the two nations' relationship by their culture, art and friendship.