Rosenberg Arts Alliance: Enticing Public Art Benches Downtown

Updated on May 19, 2020
Peggy W profile image

I live in Houston, and I have worked as a nurse. My interests include art, traveling, reading, gardening, cooking, and our wonderful pets.

Art Bench in Rosenberg, Texas
Art Bench in Rosenberg, Texas | Source

Art can take many forms. Some of it is wearable; some pieces are for viewing only; and in other cases, it is more utilitarian.

In the historic downtown of Rosenberg, we can thank the Rosenberg Arts Alliance for the idea of having artistically painted benches installed throughout a six-block area. People can not only admire them but also use them as resting spots from their daily activities, whether shopping, dining, or doing business.

Sponsor: Vincent Regina Morales. Title: Historic Rosenberg. Artist: Suzanne Syvertson
Sponsor: Vincent Regina Morales. Title: Historic Rosenberg. Artist: Suzanne Syvertson | Source

Rosenberg, Texas

The community of Rosenberg began in the year 1883. Named after Henry von Rosenberg, who was the first president of the Gulf, Colorado and Santa Fe Railway, the town was booming by the early 1900s. Shipping on the Brazos River also added to the booming economy at that time.

Be sure to visit the Rosenberg Railroad Museum to learn more about the history of this area and the importance of the railroads in bringing people and jobs to this locale.

Sponsors: Rosenberg Historians. Title: To Everyone Who Ever Set Foot In Downtown Rosenberg And Kept Memories Alive! Artist: Paul Sanchez
Sponsors: Rosenberg Historians. Title: To Everyone Who Ever Set Foot In Downtown Rosenberg And Kept Memories Alive! Artist: Paul Sanchez | Source
Sponsor: Thomas & Lewin. Title: Texas Boots & Lariat. Artist: Suzanne Syvertson
Sponsor: Thomas & Lewin. Title: Texas Boots & Lariat. Artist: Suzanne Syvertson | Source
Sponsor: RAA Art Bench. Title: Project 2016. Artist: Sue Zelko
Sponsor: RAA Art Bench. Title: Project 2016. Artist: Sue Zelko | Source

Cultural Arts District

The folks in Rosenberg relish the arts. It would be nearly impossible not to notice it if visiting the downtown area, which has the designation of being a Cultural Arts District by the State of Texas.

Sculptures, murals, potted plants, and these artistic benches highlight the historic buildings of the charming downtown locale.

Sponsor: Renee Butler Title: To Daddy My Inspiration! Artist: Katie Barcak
Sponsor: Renee Butler Title: To Daddy My Inspiration! Artist: Katie Barcak | Source
Art Bench in Rosenberg, Texas
Art Bench in Rosenberg, Texas | Source
Sponsor: RAA Art Bench. Title: Project 2016. Artist: Diane Miller
Sponsor: RAA Art Bench. Title: Project 2016. Artist: Diane Miller | Source

Funding of the Art Benches

The Rosenberg Arts Alliance received a grant for $2,250 from the Anice Read Fund, which helped facilitate some of the painting of these eye-catching benches.

In other cases, people from the community helped to pay for the seats and support the artists who created the images and embellishments upon them. The dedications varied in intent.

In Memory of Vernon E. Campbell – Husband, Father, Grandfather, and Friend. Artist: Kathy Golden
In Memory of Vernon E. Campbell – Husband, Father, Grandfather, and Friend. Artist: Kathy Golden | Source
Sponsor: William C. Butler Title: In Memory of Mayde Waddell Butler. Artist: Paul Sanchez
Sponsor: William C. Butler Title: In Memory of Mayde Waddell Butler. Artist: Paul Sanchez | Source
Sponsors: Barbara Roane Bleil and G. Grant Roane. Title: In Honor of Their Father Judge George G. Roane. Artist: Paul Sanchez
Sponsors: Barbara Roane Bleil and G. Grant Roane. Title: In Honor of Their Father Judge George G. Roane. Artist: Paul Sanchez | Source

Varied Intentions

Several of the art benches are dedicated to loved ones. Promotional material for businesses is apparent in some of these seats. Others merely serve as items of beauty as well as function. Of course, they all serve to accentuate the historic downtown Rosenberg streets.

Sponsor: Calla Lilies. Title: Snake Oil. Artist: Suzanne Syvertson
Sponsor: Calla Lilies. Title: Snake Oil. Artist: Suzanne Syvertson | Source
Sponsor: Old Main Street Bakery. Title: Jak Se Mas? (How Are You?). Artist: Karen Sabrsula
Sponsor: Old Main Street Bakery. Title: Jak Se Mas? (How Are You?). Artist: Karen Sabrsula | Source
Sponsors: Mike and Laurie Mercado. Title: To Friends & Family, Salud! Artist: Orlando Reyna
Sponsors: Mike and Laurie Mercado. Title: To Friends & Family, Salud! Artist: Orlando Reyna | Source

Missing in Action

We did not spot some of the benches dedicated to this public art project by the Rosenberg Arts Alliance. Perhaps they were being repainted? We saw one such instance first-hand at the Fort Bend Art Center.

The one featured below was on the patio of one of the artist studios. It was going to be refreshed before being reinstalled on a sidewalk outside.

If I spot more of these art benches in the future, I may add the pictures.

Sponsor: Rosenberg Arts Alliance. Title: Love Rosenberg Project 2016. Artist: Suzanne Syvertson
Sponsor: Rosenberg Arts Alliance. Title: Love Rosenberg Project 2016. Artist: Suzanne Syvertson | Source

Longest Art Bench

This final photo is the largest bench, and it did not have a dedication plaque attached to it. Therefore it may not have been a part of this Rosenberg Arts Alliance 2016 project. But it is a beauty!

Located near a parking lot on 3rd Street across from the Another Time Soda Fountain & Cafe, as well as adjacent to the Rosenberg Railroad Museum, it would seat several people.

Beautifully Painted Art Bench in Rosenberg, Texas
Beautifully Painted Art Bench in Rosenberg, Texas | Source

Are You Inspired?

If you are inspired and wish to paint a bench of your own, find a good quality wooden bench, some outdoor-rated paint, and let your creativity shine!

To learn more about the historic downtown cultural district of Rosenberg and the arts, watch the video below.

Have you ever painted a bench such as the ones shown here?

See results

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2020 Peggy Woods

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    • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

      Peggy Woods 

      7 days ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Denise,

      If you look at the bottom of most of the legs on these benches, they are bolted to the concrete. A few seem not to be, but this is a relatively small town. Perhaps that answers it.

    • PAINTDRIPS profile image

      Denise McGill 

      7 days ago from Fresno CA

      What an exciting way to entice the public to sit down and stay awhile. I wonder how they keep thieves from carting one off? Around here they wouldn't be up two days before someone would steal them. Sad but true.

      Blessings,

      Denise

    • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

      Peggy Woods 

      4 weeks ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Patricia,

      Your daughter seems to be very talented. I hope that she and all her family members are doing well. Sending virtual hugs and love your way today.

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 

      4 weeks ago from North Central Florida

      How clever. My Stef would like to paint ine...she has murals underway in their new place. Another spot I need to visit in Houston!! Once again. dear Angels on the way.

    • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

      Peggy Woods 

      8 weeks ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Manatita,

      These artful benches are indeed "interesting and diverse." They give the downtown area a welcoming appearance.

    • manatita44 profile image

      manatita44 

      8 weeks ago from london

      Interesting and diverse art benches from this Rosenberg Arts Alliance project. Reminds me of the wonders of God.

      In the light of one of their reasons for being there, one for you from the 'hubbie' soon, Peggy? (Sweet chuckle).

    • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

      Peggy Woods 

      2 months ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Robert,

      It is such a shame that people with malintent are taking advantage of the righteous marches going on right now across our country after the killing of George Floyd. Defacing monuments, looting, and destroying property has nothing to do with the 1st Amendment to our Constitution.

    • Robert Sacchi profile image

      Robert Sacchi 

      2 months ago

      Glad you live in a city that takes care of its artwork. The WWII Memorial and some other historic monuments in DC got defaced yesterday.

    • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

      Peggy Woods 

      2 months ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Robert,

      These benches are maintained in good condition. One of them was going to be repainted and is featured in this post. Others that were missing were probably also going to be refreshed.

    • Robert Sacchi profile image

      Robert Sacchi 

      2 months ago

      That's great. In many places they put up nice things but they are often neglected at worst.

    • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

      Peggy Woods 

      2 months ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Robert,

      I think that the benches are kept clean by the various stores where they are located. People using them to sit upon would also do some of the job of keeping them dusted off.

    • Robert Sacchi profile image

      Robert Sacchi 

      2 months ago

      Those benches must by lovely to look at. Hopefully, they keep them clean.

    • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

      Peggy Woods 

      2 months ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Ann,

      Blending artistry with the advertising of the town or business and serving a function at the same time is brilliant. So glad you liked learning about these public art benches in Rosenberg, Texas.

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 

      2 months ago from SW England

      I love these benches, especially the 'enter as strangers, leave as friends' one. It's a great idea, so simple yet effective. There are lots of commemorative benches in various places here but nothing so artistic.

      Thanks for bringing them to our attention and telling us the history behind them.

      Ann

    • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

      Peggy Woods 

      2 months ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Adrienne,

      Your painted chair sounds beautiful! You should be proud to sit on it! I wish we could see it. Perhaps you could write an article about how you did it?

    • alexadry profile image

      Adrienne Farricelli 

      2 months ago

      It's so nice to see such a creative touch on these benches in Rosenburg, Texas! I never painted a bench, but once painted a chair with Botticelli's Venus. It looked good, but felt bad to sit on it.

    • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

      Peggy Woods 

      2 months ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Aurelio,

      "Texas Boots and Lariat" is a cute bench. Some very creative artists work in that area in and around Rosenberg, Texas.

    • alocsin profile image

      Aurelio Locsin 

      2 months ago from Orange County, CA

      What an innovative way to promote local artists and to beautify the environment at the same time. My favorite is "Texas Boots and Lariat."

    • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

      Peggy Woods 

      2 months ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi FlourishAnyway,

      I think that you are wise to avoid crowds if the coronavirus rates are still high in your area. Your bench can wait a while longer to be painted. Plus it will give your cats more time to inspire you. Ha!

    • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

      Peggy Woods 

      2 months ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Dora,

      Not only does the bench by the title of "Group Therapy" advertise the BR Vino place of business, but it is eye-catching as well. So glad you liked it. (Smile)

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 

      2 months ago from USA

      I really like these and the fact that they are so utilitarian is wonderful. I have an extra bench sitting in my garage and I just might paint it. I’m going to consult with my cats on a design. I still don’t want to go out with the virus rates being high in my area and I’ve been wanting to refresh the small wooded area in my backyard.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 

      2 months ago from The Caribbean

      Great ideas in great art. I like all the colors and the patterns. "Group Therapy" is my comic relief. Great read!

    • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

      Peggy Woods 

      2 months ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Heidi,

      Unlike the cow sculptures (which we have also had in Houston), these benches are not a temporary fundraising project but a permanent fixture in Rosenberg, Texas. Those other cow, hearts, fire hydrants, etc. exhibits are fun to experience. In the case of the cows in Houston, a children's hospital received the proceeds, which were a terrific outcome.

    • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

      Peggy Woods 

      2 months ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Rajan,

      These artistic benches do add to the overall ambiance of experiencing downtown Rosenberg. Thanks for your visit and comment.

    • heidithorne profile image

      Heidi Thorne 

      2 months ago from Chicago Area

      We've had a variety of these types of projects in and around the Chicago area. Some years back, it wasn't benches, it was cows, almost life size cow sculptures in downtown Chicago were painted and decorated. In other towns, it's been big hearts, fire hydrants, etc. It's always interesting to see what people come up with. Thanks for sharing this one from your area!

    • rajan jolly profile image

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      2 months ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

      Beautifully painted benches. It would be a treat to walk in the downtown Rosenberg area dotted with artistic sculptures, murals, pots and these painted benches. Thank you for sharing.

    • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

      Peggy Woods 

      2 months ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Linda,

      In many of our parks, we also have benches with plaques attached in honor or memory of someone. Some people also have trees planted that have plates in the ground adjacent to the trees for the same reason. I like the idea of memorials like that.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 

      2 months ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Painting public benches sounds like a great idea. Where I live, people are able to add a plaque to a bench in remembrance of a loved one who has died. One man has placed plants around the bench dedicated to his wife and tends them carefully, which is lovely to see. He has attached some of the plants to the bench. I think it would be very nice if he was able to paint the bench as well (if he wanted to).The painted benches in your photos are interesting.

    • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

      Peggy Woods 

      2 months ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Rosina,

      These colorful benches add much to the appearance of the downtown area in Rosenberg. I am pleased that you liked the idea of painting benches to add color and interest to an environment.

    • surovi99 profile image

      Rosina S Khan 

      2 months ago

      I agree with you, Peggy, painting a good quality bench with outdoor-rated paint will surly let our creative juices flow and let us have a great time during the pandemic. I am glad Rosenberg Arts Alliance and others have artistically-painted benches in the downtown, which show varied forms of creativity. Thanks for sharing.

    • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

      Peggy Woods 

      2 months ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Ruby,

      Painting a wooden bench would be a good project during the pandemic keeping many of us at home. Too bad, you did not keep yours. That would have kept you busy for a while. Deciding what to paint would have been part of the fun.

    • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

      Peggy Woods 

      2 months ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Mary,

      Yes, an outdoor art gallery that might entice people to enter the different stores and restaurants.

    • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

      Peggy Woods 

      2 months ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Pamela,

      These art benches in Rosenberg added to the ambiance of their pretty downtown area.

    • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

      Peggy Woods 

      2 months ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Liz,

      I agree that these are more inviting than just the plain park benches. They serve double-duty as functional art.

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Richert 

      2 months ago from Southern Illinois

      I wish I'd kept an old bench I had when I moved. I would paint it while housebound. All the benches were nice, I esp. liked the one with stars. All towns should have benches, not only are they beautiful, they invite people to stop and visit.

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 

      2 months ago from Ontario, Canada

      What a beautiful idea. It is an outdoor art gallery.

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 

      2 months ago from Sunny Florida

      I like those painted benchs and have not seen them before. It really dresses up the area as the benches are beautiful.

    • Eurofile profile image

      Liz Westwood 

      2 months ago from UK

      What a great idea. These benches look so much nicer and more colourful than the standard park benches we have in the UK.

    • Peggy W profile imageAUTHOR

      Peggy Woods 

      2 months ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Bill,

      It is not only eye-catching but serviceable as well to have these public art benches in downtown areas. Nice to know that Olympia has also done this.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      2 months ago from Olympia, WA

      They did the same thing here in Olympia. It is quite nice and appealing, I think. I think all cities should do that to beautify the downtown area in little increments.

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