The new Art Center includes an 8,000 square foot building dedicated to hosting amazing events. This is the ROCC, the Rockport Conference Center, and it is a venue beyond any typical meeting space. It is modern, airy, equipped with state-of-the-art everything and even features an industrial catering kitchen.
The ROCC is not just for art events. It will be available for business conferences, commercial events, even weddings. Paulette Kluge is the new venue manager and will oversee the first event being held in the new space, the Annual Rockport Film Festival in November.
The new ROCC is THE boutique event destination to facilitate incredibly memorable conferences, meetings and events.
– Paulette Kluge
The main space, known as the ballroom, can easily be divided into four separate rooms. There is a stunning foyer, a catering/culinary arts kitchen and the entire space features high tech audio-visual and acoustic systems. Even the ceiling looks high tech!
Next time you need to plan a business meeting, conference or event, think about using the ROCC. Revenue from the ROCC supports the Art Center, and events at the ROCC can even include special access and tours of the Art Center’s galleries. Now that would be an event with artistic flair!
The Smarts Behind The Art
Hundreds of people have contributed to make the stunning new Rockport Center for the Arts a reality, but no one has worked harder, or smarter, to bring it to life than Luis Puron.
Luis’ path to the arts world has been non-traditional…. and that is exactly why the new Art Center is so exceptional. Always an arts-lover, after graduating from the University of Texas at Austin, Luis worked in biotech and then the non-profit sector for nearly 30 years before joining the Rockport Center for the Arts as its director in 2015.
Two years later, Hurricane Harvey destroyed the former Art Center… but that’s when Luis’ experience in the business world kicked in. He crafted a vision for an even-more engaging center, one that would:
– celebrate local artists
– feature world-class exhibits
– create a vibrant community and teaching space
– attract visitors to Rockport
He championed the capital campaign to raise the $12.5 million needed for the new center and he pursued donations from art-lovers across Texas with irrepressible energy and passion.
Admission to the new Art Center’s gallery is free, but Luis’ smart planning ensures ongoing income streams to fund the center year after year. For example, Luis planned and built a state-of-the-art conference center (with catering kitchen) available for events, such as the upcoming Rockport-Fulton Film Festival, and private rentals.
The new Art Center is much more than a gallery or museum, or school, but an all-encompassing nucleus for the visual, performing, and culinary arts, from which joy, talent, enthusiasm, and expertise radiate throughout the entire community. Thank you Luis for leading us to a fantastic new era of the arts in Rockport.
Rockport’s rich biodiversity, history of preservation, and famed birding habitat demand a particular creative expression to adequately serve the community. In this vein, there will be an extra special exhibit, Birds in Art at the Art Center, from February 1st to April 23rd, 2023. What makes this exhibit so opportune and timely is that it was scheduled to be presented right before Harvey decimated the old arts center and the town itself. Luis managed to have the exhibit relocated at the last minute to Corpus Christi, but with the new facility up and running, this exquisite production will finally be shown in Rockport.
As a major migratory route for many avian species, a whooping crane nesting habitat, and a world-renowned birding location, Rockport is the ideal spot to showcase this gorgeous exposition of birds in art. From Pelicans to egrets, raptors to loons, owls to hummingbirds, nature lovers won’t want to miss this celebration of feathered friends.
As Pablo Picasso wrote, The purpose of art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls. Welcome to the new Rockport Center for the Arts; somewhere to rediscover your soul and lose and find yourself at the same time.
How A Coastal Texas Town Became An Art Enclave
Rockport’s heritage and evolution as an art colony is beautifully told in The Story of the Rockport-Fulton Art Colony.
With its waterscapes, abundance of wildlife and quaint architecture of bait stands and fish houses, authors Kay Kronke Betz and Vickie Moon Merchant chronicle how Rockport and Fulton grew from a small fishing village to be an art enclave. Generously illustrated by Maria Nesbit, with images of boats, bays and seaside architecture, the book is a visual and narrative treat for art lovers, conservationists, and historians alike. Enjoy this wonderful history.