Newport Visual Arts Center

OCCA nurtures the artist in everyone by providing a range of educational opportunities for artists, professionals and amateurs alike, so that they can cultivate their creative spirits.

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777 NW Beach Drive
Newport, OR 97365 

Directions: Google Maps and other online mapping programs can have a problem directing you to the VAC. Here are the easiest directions to follow: heading north or south on Hwy. 101, turn west on NW 3rd St. Proceed straight down the hill. At the second stop sign, turn right. One short block later, turn left under Nye Beach archway. Proceed straight to Nye Beach turnaround and parking lot. The VAC is the large blue and gray building off the turnaround. To director offices and upper parking lot: turn west of Hwy. 101 at NW 3rd St. Head down hill. At second stop sign, continue straight 1.5 blocks, with the Sylvia Beach Hotel remaining on your left. The VAC administrative offices can be accessed through the smaller, upper parking lot.

Contact Info:

Newport Visual Arts Center
777 NW Beach Drive
Newport, OR 97365 



Runyan Gallery Hours are Tuesday - Sunday, 11 am - 6 pm (summer, closes at 5 pm during winter hours).
Upstairs Gallery Hours are Tuesday - Saturday, noon - 4 pm.
COVAS Gallery Hours are Tuesday - Saturday, noon - 4 pm.


Place Description:

The Newport Visual Arts Center, located at the historic Nye Beach Turnaround, is a facility built by the City of Newport as a public art exhibition space and for art education programs and maintained by the Oregon Coast Council for the Arts. Opening in 1983, the Newport Visual Arts Center (or "VAC") is the largest facility on the Oregon Coast built specifically for the exhibition of visual art. The VAC includes three traditional gallery spaces, as well as the newer "media room" and "Classroom Gallery." The VAC also includes two classrooms/event spaces that are rented by a wide variety of community organizations and private parties.

The William Runyan Gallery occupies approximately 1,100 square feet on the first floor and exhibits 8-12 shows per year.

The Upstairs Gallery, a 300 square foot gallery space on the third floor level, schedules 8-12 exhibits per year featuring new and experimental artists in the norhwest region.

The Coastal Oregon Visual Artists' Showcase (COVAS), established in 2011, occupies space on the third floor of the Visual Arts Center. Download the initial COVAS exhibition catalogue as a PDF (5.8MB).

The Media Room was established in summer 2016 and is intended as a space for digital art and installations (video, photography, light and sound exhibitions). Located the VAC's second floory, the Media Room is approximately 300 square feet and has seating space for 15-20 viewers. The Media Room can also be used as a meeting and classroom space, and includes large darkroom sink.

The Classroom Gallery was established in summer 2016 as home for student artwork. Approximately 200 square feet, the Classroom Gallery is a less formal gallery space and also functions as a meeting and classroom space. Most work exhibited in the Classroom Gallery has been wall work. The Classroom Gallery has hosted exhibits generated through the OCCA Art Fridays program and the VAC Summer Camp as well as exhibits developed by outside groups such as the Newport Middle School and Neighbors for Kids. Contact the VAC director if you exhibit ideas to present for showcasing student-developed artwork.

All exhibitions are free and open to the public.

Submitting exhibition proposals. Download the Exhibit Proposal Form from the right side of this page. Fill out the form completely and with as much detail as possible, including sample images. Deliver form and materials to the VAC director either via email to or by dropping off hard copies to the VAC's physical address.

The Visual Arts Center also offers classes, workshops, and community events. The facility is also available for rental for art events and other activities. View the Rental Rates in the Downloads area to the right.

Runyan Gallery Hours are Tuesday - Sunday, 11 am - 6 pm (summer, closes at 5pm during winter hours).
Upstairs Gallery Hours are Tuesday - Saturday, noon - 4 pm.
COVAS Gallery Hours are Tuesday - Saturday, noon - 4 pm.

Contact us for gallery or room rental information at 541-265-6540 or

Contact the Director, Tom Webb, at 541-265-6569 or email

Social Media: One of the best ways to stay informed on VAC exhibits and activities is to follow us on Facebook at "Newport Visual Arts Center."

ARCHIVES – View Past Exhibitions at the Center

Volunteer Opportunities

Thank you for your participation in the arts. One of the greatest gifts is the gift of your time and talent. VAC volunteers serve as gallery docents, event and office supporters, and as committee members. Current open gallery shifts: Tuesday, Wednesday: 3-6pm; and Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday: noon to 4pm. Contact the VAC director at regarding your volunteer interests. The VAC also has current needs for an event photographer and videographer.

Visual Arts Center (VAC) Steering Group

The VAC Steering Committee was formed in 2014 and is making sure that the VAC will be on a sound footing well into the future. The Steering Committee is addressing building needs, VAC marketing, a VAC business model and funding, and future VAC arts-learning activities. The VAC Steering Committee includes representatives from partner organizations as well as at-large community members. This group meets on the third Tuesday of the month, 10am-noon. Contact Tom Webb at for details.

Arts Learning Advisory Group

This group of artists, educators, community members and staff are creating youth-art classes and other youth-art activities at the Visual Arts Center. The VAC is now hosting Art Fridays youth-art classes during the fall and winter seasons, and art camps during the summer. Search this site for "Art Fridays" for a listing of the most recent classes, or email for more information or to be put on the VAC's youth-arts email listserv. The Arts Learning Advisory Group meets on the first Wednesday of the month, 9-11am. Contact Tom Webb at for more information.

Exhibition Advisory Group (EAC)

The Exhibition Advisory Committee (EAC) supports the VAC director in reviewing and developing exhibition ideas, coordinating the exhibition calendar, artist outreach, exhibition installation and event planning. The EAC meets on the last Tuesday of the month, 5:15pm. at the VAC. Contact Tom Webb at for more information.

Upcoming Events in Newport Visual Arts Center

  • Newport Paper & Book Arts Festival 2018 Request for Proposals

    July 12nd, 2017 to September 29th, 2017

    Oregon Coast Council for the Arts is accepting proposals for workshops on paper, paper-related and book-arts subjects for the 2018 Newport Paper & Book Arts Festival XXIII. We welcome new and innovative techniques as well as traditional processes.

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  • Eye and Spirit: Pit-Fired Ceramics by Michael Schwartz

    August 4th, 2017 to September 30th, 2017

    The Oregon Coast Council for the Arts presents the exhibition “Eye and Spirit” by Coastal Lane County artist Michael Schwartz from August 4 to September 30 in the Coastal Oregon Visual Artists Showcase (COVAS) at the Newport Visual Arts Center. “Eye and Spirit” will feature pit-fired ceramic work, including disc forms and wall pieces. An opening reception for the exhibition is scheduled for September 8, 5-7pm, with an artist talk at 6:30pm.

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  • Art Fridays Fall 2017 Session

    August 24th, 2017 to December 15th, 2017

    Newport Visual Arts Center Fall 2017-- October 13 to December 15 9-Class Session for 5th-8th Graders To register, call 541-265-6569 or email (see registration form on reverse) Classes are geared toward 5th to 8th graders (10 - 14 years of age). Classes are from 3:45pm to 5:45pm at the Newport Visual Arts Center (777 NW Beach Dr.). Cost: $12 per class, or $96 for series of 9 classes (scholarships available). All classes limited to 15 students. Students will be presented with opportunities to develop work to submit to the OCCA’s PushPin Show in December. An exhibit of student work from the session will be held in the VAC’s “Classroom Gallery.” See detailed description for class schedule and download flyer/registration form for more information.

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  • Punctum: Painted-Light Photography by Thomas Wheeler

    September 8th, 2017 to October 28th, 2017

    The Oregon Coast Council for the Arts presents the exhibition, “Punctum: Painted-Light Photography by Thomas Wheeler,” from September 8 to October 28 in the Upstairs Gallery at the Newport Visual Arts Center. Wheeler’s photographs, shot on solitary, vast locations, highlight the bewildering wonderment of distinct landscapes. The artistry found in Wheeler’s painted-light photographs comes from the combination of long exposures, hand-held light-emitting tools, and the artist’s talent to create a personal touching detail, which then establishes direct relationship with an object or person within a photograph, or “punctum.” A reception for the exhibition will be held on Friday, September 8, 5-7pm at the VAC, with an artist’s talk at 6:30pm during the reception.

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  • Variety of Visions: Works from the Pacific Northwest Sculptors

    September 8th, 2017 to October 29th, 2017

    The Oregon Coast Council for the Arts presents “Variety of Visions,” a juried exhibition by the Pacific Northwest Sculptors (PNS), from September 8 to October 29 in the Runyan Gallery at the Newport Visual Arts Center. The exhibition will include work by 28 PNS members, artists residing and creating work in Oregon and Washington. All mediums, including bronze, stone, clay, glass, mixed media and paper, will be featured in “Variety of Visions.” An opening reception is planned for Friday, September 8, 5-7pm, at the VAC, with PNS leaders speaking at 6:30pm.

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