FROM STAFF REPORTS
BASTROP — A collaboration of national nonprofit organizations has awarded the Bastrop Fine Arts Guild a $488,800 grant to help covert the century-old Powell Cotton Seed Mill into the Lost Pines Art Center & Sculpture Garden.
The guild’s plans for the art center include 4,000 square feet of exhibition space — enough to house major traveling art shows — and 1,000 to 2,000 square feet of classroom space with the intent of provided a working and gathering space for artists and art lovers.
A portion of the grant from ArtPlace America will be used to demolish the old gin and reclaim construction material to be incorporated into the new building. The remainder will be used for final development of design blueprints and construction documents, said Karol Rice, the Lost Pines Art Center & Sculpture Garden project director.
“When you plan well, develop strong community and corporate partnerships and engage local residents, bold visions can become a reality. Working together you can achieve something that may have once been considered inconceivable,” Rice said.
The guild has previously received funding from the Bastrop Economic Development Corp., the city of Bastrop, Collins Foundation, Shield-Ayers Foundation and the Texas Historical Foundation. Including the ArtsPlace grant, the guild is halfway to its fundraising goal of $3.5 million, said Jeannette Condray, finance director for the project.
“This is so good for the future of our city and the Lost Pines area. We look forward to both the economic and cultural impact the Lost Pines Art Center will have on our community,” Bastrop City Manager Mike Talbot said.
ArtPlace America is a collaboration among the Barr Foundation, Bloomberg Philanthropies, The Ford Foundation, The James Irvine Foundation, The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, The Kresge Foundation, The McKnight Foundation, The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, The William Penn Foundation, The Rockefeller Foundation, Rasmuson Foundation, The Surdna Foundation and two anonymous donors. ArtPlace also receives funding from Bank of America, Citi, Deutsche Bank, Chase, MetLife and Morgan Stanley.
The collaboration has awarded 189 grants totaling $56.8 million to projects in 122 communities across 42 states and the District of Columbia, officials say.
COVER: The 1883 Bastrop County Courthouse. PHOTO by MATTHEW RUTLEDGE. MERCURY ILLUSTRATION by BRAD ROLLINS.