News & Press Releases
For Immediate Release


Story Photo
Photo by Wesley Gonzales
l-r: Mary Mikel Stump, Laura Kreft, Kingsley Onyeiwu
Thursday, March 16th, 2017
Rising Eyes of Texas Awards and Prizes Handed Out

On Saturday, March 11th,Rockport Center for the Arts presented three university undergraduate and graduate students emerging in the visual arts with $1,000 in cash prizes. The tenth annual Rising Eyes of Texas winners are:

  • First prize $500- Kingsley Onyeiwu from Houston Baptist University for the charcoal drawing The Messenger
  • Second prize $300- Kentra Gilbert from Houston Baptist University for the abstract 142
  • Third prize $200- Gabriela Martinez from Texas State for the ceramic piece Tu Preciosa Energía

This year the winners were selected by Mary Mikel Stump who attended the opening. Stump is the Director of Exhibitions at Southwest School of Art in San Antonio and spent several hours reviewing the work of thirty-four artists from thirteen Texas universities.

She also selected five honorable mentions:

  • Elizabeth Mazurek from Southwestern University
  • Kristen Swartz from Texas Tech
  • Lars Roeder from Texas A&M Corpus Christi
  • Ross Turner from Texas A&M Corpus Christi
  • Laura Vasyutynska from Texas Christian



Also on March 11th, the Susie Love Scholarship was awarded to Shawn Hartin a graduating senior from Rockport-Fulton High School who has demonstrated an interest in pursuing art in college.  Hartin submitted artwork to the Rising Eyes of Texas Student Exhibition held in the Garden Gallery.  Susie Love said “the purpose of the scholarship is to encourage the pursuit of a career in the arts by encouraging enrollment in a college or university level art program.”  This is the 10th installment of the $2,000 scholarship administered by the Art Center.

The $300 Hudson Award was created by Sheryl and Gerald Hudson and the 2017 recipient is Amelia Franklin. In the spirit of continuing to foster the arts and art education, the Art center awarded an additional $225 in prizes to:

  • $100 for first prize, Drew Scott
  • $75 for second prize, Ansley Krnavek
  • $50 for third prize, Jody Sims

Two honorable mentions to:

  • Helen Hartman
  • Angela Gallegos