Last Month the Rockport Center for the Arts announced that Lighthouse Fountain, the popular public monument by Jesús Bautista Moroles (1950–2015), will be dismantled and put into temporary storage due to structural issues.
The red granite tower, which was commissioned in 2002, was completely disassembled a few weeks after the announcement at the end of May.
For almost two decades, Lighthouse Fountain has been a hallmark for the Rockport community, symbolizing the resilience and beauty of the Live Oak Peninsula. Recently, after a slew of natural disasters — most notably, Hurricane Harvey in 2017 — the Rockport Center for the Arts decided to conduct a condition report of all the pieces in its sculpture park, including Lighthouse Fountain.
With the help of Moroles Art Co. — a foundation dedicated to the preservation of Moroles’s work and founded by Kurt Kangas and Suzanna Moroles (Jesús Moroles’s brother-in-law and sister, respectively) — and a staff of insurance adjusters, the Rockport Center for the Arts surmised that the steel armature would continue to degrade and that the best option to ensure its preservation would be to take it down.
In the press release sent out by Rockport Center for the Arts, Suzanna Moroles, who worked closely with her brother on the monument, stated: “Lighthouse Fountain, dedicated in 2002, is a very important work in Moroles’s career and we are honored to be able to work with Rockport Center for the Arts to preserve the work. This is what Jesús would have wanted.”
The sculpture is now in temporary storage until a new armature is built and is ready to be moved to its new location at the Art Center’s downtown campus. The timeline for its much-anticipated return is still under consideration.