The mission of the Beach Art Center
is to inspire lifelong learning, empower the individual, and engage the community of all ages in the creative arts.
WHAT WE ENVISION
Bringing Artists Together
Our mission is to create a safe, communal space for all kinds of artists and art enthusiasts. We believe in unlocking the creativity within each of us - offering a wide range of classes, workshops, gallery shows, and events for the entire community. Whether you’re a professional looking for new inspiration, a new student seeking to learn and have fun, or if you’re simply interested in picking up a new hobby or strolling through our Art Gallery, the Beach Art Center welcomes you.
We are open to the public and offer the following services:
Art Classes for All Skill Levels
"Art on the Rocks" (Make it, Take it Classes)
Creative Kids Summer Camp
Gift Shop featuring Local Art
Art Center Membership with perks
HISTORY OF THE
BEACH ART CENTER
The Beach Art Center was founded by George King. Mr. King’s vision was to improve, enhance and advance the public knowledge of fine visual art. As a resident of Indian Rocks Beach, he hoped for many years to start a school of fine art and an art gallery in the beach community. Mr. King developed a relationship with the City of Indian Rocks Beach and with the American Legion Post #128. His hard work resulted in the Legion donating the use of their building for a place to hold art classes. The Center was incorporated and opened in the refurbished building in May of 1978.
In 1982 the Beach Art Center was granted tax-exempt status under code 501(c)3. In that same year, money was raised to build a 1,400 square foot addition to the building. The project was completed the following year providing space for more classes, workshops, and special event demonstrations. The profile of the Art Center was growing, making it an important part of the island beach communities.
Mr. King suffered a stroke in 1989. His wife, Joann, continued the operation of the Center until her retirement in 1997 when the first executive director was hired.
In the 1990s major renovations were undertaken. The fifty-year old building had begun to fall into serious disrepair. A decision was made to purchase the property (Corporation) from the Legion. The Art Center took out a mortgage to cover the purchase of the property and pay for the necessary renovations. Through the generosity of a local donor, the entire mortgage was paid in June of 2000.
In 2003 the art center received a grant from the State of Florida, Division of Cultural Affairs, through the Florida Arts Council. The money was dedicated to completing building construction and renovations.
To meet the cultural and artistic needs of a growing population of young families, the Beach Art Center continues to develop children’s’ programs including the “Kreative Kids Summer Camp” and After School Art classes.
Regular weekly classes are taught by accomplished and recognized artists and teachers. Adult classes are offered in watercolor, pencil and pastel, water-media, oil, acrylic, pottery, drawing, photography and more. Workshops are offered to advance the skills of beginning to advanced artists in a variety of art media including all types of painting, fabric dyeing, recycled sculpture, paper mache and photography.
In addition, popularity continues to grow for our Art on the Rocks (Make It Take It) one night 3 hour classes. The participants start with a blank canvas or watercolor paper and at the end of the evening they go home with a finished work of art.
Show and exhibitions at the Art Center feature the work of local artists and BAC members, as well as local and regional arts groups. The Art Center has hosted exhibitions by the Tampa Bay Surface Design Guild (Surfing the Surface), The Florida Artists Group, The Professional Association of Visual Artists and the Pinellas Art Teachers' Association.
The Beach Art Center receives no major outside funding. We rely on membership dues, class and workshop enrollment fees and our major events.
We are grateful for the generosity of local organizations like the Rotary Club. Their gift is very important in providing scholarships for childrens' camp.
The mission of the Beach Art Center is to inspire lifelong learning, empower the individual, and engage the community of all ages in the creative arts.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS