News & Press Releases
For Immediate Release

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Tuesday, July 18th, 2006
Contemporary Sculpture Exhibition Opens July 12, 2006


Pamela Fulcher Rockport Center for the Arts 361-729-5519 July 18, 2006

For Immediate Release


ROCKPORT, TX --  “Contemporary Sculpture” a multi-media exhibit featuring the works of seven sculpture artists is on display at the Rockport Center for the Arts through August 12.  Exhibitors include Deb Gioia, Elvira Hickert, Kyle Fokken, Steve Gambill, Jim LaPaso, Bill Meek and Charles Taube. “Contemporary sculpture is one of the most exciting and fastest growing mediums in the art world,” noted Pam Fulcher, Art Director for the Center.  “It pushes the boundaries of traditional sculpting by incorporating new methods and materials that challenge both the artist and the viewer.”  To bring this event to Rockport, the Exhibit Committee reviewed the work of numerous artists throughout the country before selecting these seven innovative artists. Born of Italian immigrants and raised in St. Louis, Missouri, Gioia spent several years in private practice as a counselor before moving to North Padre Island.  A self taught sculptor, she combines various metals and stained glass to create whimsical designs.  Copper, steel and brass form the basic structures, while colorful wire, recycled items and found objects enhance the designed.  Stained glass constantly evolves throughout the day as the light reflects through it.  This clever use of materials draws the observer in to look beyond the obvious.  (Description courtesy of The Gallery of Rockport) Hickert is a Mexican born artist who began exploring glass in 1992 when she decided to undertake study in this medium with renowned instructors Eric Hilton, Robert Nachman and Duane Dahl.  Her work has appeared in 50 group shows and 12 solo exhibitions in public places, corporate offices, and museums and galleries throughout the world.


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A resident of Minneapolis, Fokken graduated with honors from St. Cloud State University with an undergraduate degree in ceramic sculpture with a business emphasis.  He describes himself as a visceral artist whose work is based on a love of antique toys as viewed from a modern perspective.  He fuses this nostalgia with naïve visionary art through the use of found objects and rough construction. A long time resident of Corpus Christi, Gambill received his bachelor’s degree in fine art from Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi.  He is a visual artist and performer, who has taught both visual arts and theater in public school classrooms, as well as community art centers.  With little regard to their intended purposes, he combines unrelated parts to create unique works of art, most of which evoke curiosity and are meant to be experienced. Having come from an artistic family, LaPaso started sculpture at a very early age.  He started taking lessons at the Hill Fine Art Center and went on to teach photography and wood sculpture there and at Joliet Jr. College.  During that time he studied the masters of kinetic art and decided to channel all of his energy into embracing that medium.  A resident of Kyle, all of his kinetic sculpture are made up of copper, brass, aluminum or stainless steel and are designed to move in the slightest breeze. A self taught artist from Wimberly, Meek had developed his own distinct method of style.  One of the unique aspects of his work is the ability to create larger scale glass sculptures which are imbued with symbolism.  He is represented by numerous galleries throughout the Southwest and his work has been commissioned and collected by such individuals and businesses as Racquel Welch, Tony Bennett, Herb Kelleher, Lee Iaccoca, the George Bush Presidential Library, Houston Museum of Fine Arts and M.D. Anderson Hospital. After a serious accident affected the use of his left hand and art, Taube realized that he would be unable to return to his profession of carpentry.  Fortunately, he had dabbled in sculpture previously and decided to


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pursue his dream of becoming a full-time artist. 

Self taught, his contemporary free-flowing hardwood sculptures are uniquely individual in themselves.  The Arizona-based artist carefully selects kiln-dried hardwood with special grain patterns and colors.  Then, inch by inch he cuts, laminates and polishes them to grow into a feeling of motion.

A non-profit organization, the Rockport Center for the Arts is dedicated to providing an environment that nurtures the expression and appreciation of art for residents and tourists alike. For more information on the “Contemporary Sculpture” exhibit and the Center’s offerings, please call 361-729-5519.