M A R I N A
The Corpus Christi Marina has partnered with the Art Center of Corpus Christi to develop a public art program.
This initiative will create a better downtown experience that encourages pedestrian traffic throughout the marina and reimagines our built environment with bold, creative vibrancy.
THE CREATIVE VETS CHECKERBOARD
The Creative Vets Checkerboard project will create two a giant (32’ x 32’) artfully designed, functional checkerboard sets with bench seating. They will be installed on the Lawrence Street T-head in the Corpus Christi Marina. Corpus Christi has a rich history with the military. Ten miles east of the Marina is the Naval Air Station Corpus Christi.
The lead artist is a Marine Veteran of the Vietnam War, Josemaria Lopez. Mr. Lopez will be commissioned to paint four paintings 80” x 16” each; one for each bench. The paintings will be recreated in mosaic by two artists who describe themselves as “Navy brats”. All design elements, colors, patterns and shapes will be inspired by Mr. Lopez’s paintings. Award winning artist and graphic designer Gilbert Cantu, will create designs and patterns for the checkerboard and checkers based on elements of the paintings by Mr. Lopez. The end result will be a colorful, professionally designed community art project.
Additionally, there will be Veteran engagement activities such as the checkerboard stenciling and checker painting events at and with local VFW and American Legion Posts. Other activities include a mosaic demonstration, Coast Guard vs. Navy checkers tournament and ribbon cutting ceremony featuring a performance by the Texas Veterans Band of Corpus Christi.
The Creative Checkerboard project weaves together three groups in the Marina Arts District who typically do not interact; artists, boaters and Veterans. The goal is to make art that creates community; because, lasting change begins at home. All three groups have a home on the Marina: Sherrill Memorial Park, the Art Center of Corpus Christi and the Marina.
Example of giant checker board
Artwork by checkerboard artist
& veteran Josemaria I. Lopez
Bench created by mosaic artists David & Elsie Reichenbacher