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0 Rockport Center for the Arts | STANDING OUT: The Merit Artists 2016

Joe Peña, Assistant Professor of Painting at Texas A&M University, Corpus Christi selected 5 artists for this year's group exhibit at Rockport Center for the Arts.

STANDING OUT opens to the public Saturday, August 6th at 5:00 pm in the Main Gallery.

The first “Merit Show” at Rockport Center for the Arts occurred in July of 1985. The artists chosen were Evelyn Atkinson (also Poster Artist 1998), Gertrude Bryant, Kathy Sayre, Cookie Tillman, and Fred Wright. At the time, all were chosen by popular vote. Now each year a distinguished guest juror chooses five artists of merit, and the public chooses the sixth by popular vote.

Continuing a 32-year Tradition, six outstanding Rockport Center for the Arts members will display works in the Main Gallery. Five were chosen by juror Joe Peña, Assistant Professor of Painting at Texas A&M University, Corpus Christi. Peña's selections were made in December of last year during Currents, the annual All-Members exhibit. A Peoples' Choice, rounds-out the selected artists. The show opens with a reception August 6th from 5-7 pm. Admission is open to the public and free of charge.

About the Merit Artists 2016:

Robert Pate (Corpus Christi) – Robert, a Senior District Judge and lawyer, was born and raised in Corpus Christi and has been painting for 5 years. With bay-scapes, figurative work, and more contemporary oil pieces, he hopes to show that he isn't a one trick pony.

Bob Rhodes (Corpus Christi) – Bob is a regular in the Life Drawing sessions as well as a fellow plein aire painter. When he's not painting, Bob likes listening to and playing guitar music.

Elena Rodriguez (Port Aransas) – Elena graduated with a BFA from Washington University in Saint Louis and a MFA from New York Academy of Art. She is Director of Events and Membership at the Art Center. Elena's small oil paintings often hang in the Members Galleries.

Taylor Starkey (Victoria) – Taylor is a family practice physician living in Victoria who has been turning wood objects since 1990. Many of his pieces are in private collections. He often uses mesquite wood in his work.

Ken Reese (Rockport) - Ken retired from an engineering and management career of 30+ years in 1992. He has been involved in art of one form or another for about 20 years. He regularly teaches a series of ceramic classes at the Art Center and is currently re-establishing his studio in Rockport. He moved from Ovilla, Texas.

Clementina Rivera (Rockport) – Clementina started painting at the age of 10 when her mother gave her a set of oil paints. She has been a Shrimporee Poster Artist as well as an Oyster Fest and Hummer/Bird Festival t-shirt artist. Clementina was selected as this year’s peoples' choice Merit artist.

About Rockport Center for the Arts

Rockport Center for the Arts, a vibrant multi-disciplinary non-profit arts organization of 47 years with 700 active members, is located on Aransas Bay in Rockport, Texas. It is dedicated to providing an environment that nurtures expression and appreciation of art for residents and visitors. The City of Rockport, famous for its vast colony of more than 800 artists, has been identified as “The 100 Best Small Art Towns in America” by John Villani and “Top 10 Artist Colonies” by Allen Bunting in Coastal Living Magazine.

Rockport Center for the Arts is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 AM to 4 PM and Sunday from 1 to 4 PM. Admission is always free. For more information call (361)729-5519 or visit rockportartcenter.com.

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