The Hope Tree Art Exhibition is an exhibition of artworks made by and for the North End communities, that will be on view in Miantonomi Park from August 15 – October 15, 2020. The Arts & Culture Working Group of the Newport Health Equity Zone invites individuals, families, groups and organizations who are based, live or work in the North End to participate by creating an artwork to be on display in the Park this summer and fall. 

The exhibition had previously been held in April in conjunction with Earth Day festivities and included artworks made by local residents, community groups, art students from Newport schools, after school enrichment program participants and more. The opening of the exhibition coincided with the Sidewalk Parade and a Park Celebration with music, food, art, tree planting, dance performances and more. Each year, the exhibition (previously called the Tree Path Project) has grown and evolved. Though the events were cancelled this year due to COVID, the Arts & Culture Working Group concluded that art was needed more than ever this year.

This temporary public art piece seeks to lift and make visible the voices and experiences of North End community members. This year, each Hope Tree maker will select an affirming word to use as the theme for their artwork. That word will be painted on a large piece of canvas by local Newport Public Art muralist Jy-Tique Harris, and then returned to the makers to embellish with related stories, images, poems, and decorations. Decorations may be drawn, sewn, glued or painted on the fabric. The artworks will then be wrapped around large tree trunks in Miantonomi Park, creating a path of beautiful and inspiring artworks that celebrate the North End community.

This exhibition is made possible by support from Newport Solar, True Value One Stop Building Supply Center, and Newport Art Museum.  

Who can participate?Any person, family or group who is based, lives or works in the North End of Newport 

How do you sign up? Sign up by emailing Cristin Searles Bilodeau at the Newport Art Museum or 401-619-7985 

What does it cost?It’s FREE to participate, and art making materials are provided.  

How does it work?After participants sign up, they will select a word theme, which will be painted on the fabric. When it’s ready, the fabric and paint materials will be delivered to makers to complete. When complete, they will be picked up and installed in the Park by Arts & Culture Working Group volunteers.  

Deadline to sign up: August 5

Deadline for completed artwork: August 11

Exhibition will open August 15, 2020. Due to the Park’s COVID restrictions, no large public gathering or celebration is possible, but the artwork will be on display until October 15, 2020. 

The Newport Health Equity Zone Arts & Culture Working Group of members represent:

  • The Newport Health Equity Zone
  • Newport Art Museum
  • FabNewport
  • Newport County Youth Chorus/Aquidneck Singers
  • Arts and Cultural Alliance of Newport County
  • Newport Art House
  • Common Fence Music
  • Newport Public Schools
  • Newport String Project
  • College Unbound
  • Boys and Girls Club of Newport County
  • Newport Public Art
  • Newport Restoration Foundation
  • Looking Upwards/Creative Communities Collaborative/Downtown Designs

About Jy-Tique Harris

Jy-Tique Harris (Omega_Artt) is a local spray paint artist and muralist, and an active member of Newport Public Art. His vibrant mural work can be seen in various locations around Newport including an epic seascape on the corner of River Lane and Marlborough Street in downtown Newport.

About the Newport Health Equity Zone

The Newport Health Equity Zone is a city-wide coalition mobilizing residents and resources of the Broadway and North End neighborhoods to make Newport a place where everyone can thrive.

About the HEZ Arts & Culture Working Group

The HEZ Arts and Culture working group strives to increase the HEZ community’s engagement and participation with the arts and help facilitate creative and professional opportunities for residents.

About the Newport Art Museum

The Newport Art Museum was founded in 1912 on the belief that art is a civilizing influence and an essential component to creating vibrant communities. Newport Art Museum offers a broad variety of offerings and activities to visitors, including exhibitions of contemporary art, artworks from its own permanent collection, a Museum School with studio classes, workshops, and camps, and Art trips, talks, and other programming, all on its beautiful 3-acre campus on Bellevue Avenue in Newport, RI.