ASBURY PARK, NJ – Continuing its mission to strengthen the arts throughout the Jersey Shore, The Collective Art Tank today announced it will partner with Riverview Medical Center to host “Message Me: HOPE,” a photography exhibit that will feature the work of 10 teenagers, ages 13 to 17 years, who have been affected by Hurricane Sandy.  Opening at 5:00 p.m. on Saturday, March 7, the exhibit will display a culmination of photographs the teens have developed over the course of five, two-hour healing arts classes.  Facilitated by Riverview Medical Center’s award-winning Art Therapy Program and funded via a grant from the UnitedHealthcare® Community Plan, Message Me: HOPE will explore how and where the teens discovered hope in the aftermath of the hurricane.

“Supported by leading art material brands Liquitex, Winsor & Newton and Conté à Paris, The Collective Art Tank is dedicated to engaging and supporting art enthusiasts of all ages.  Message Me: HOPE is a brilliant program that offers teenagers from Monmouth and Ocean Counties a creative outlet for handling stress and recovery.  The Art Therapy Program at Riverview Medical Center aligns perfectly with our mission, and we are pleased to be able to use our downtown studio space to support this cause,” commented Jimmy Leslie, resident artist at Liquitex, Winsor & Newton and Conté à Paris, and director of The Fine Art Collective.

Crucial to creating resilience, hope is essential to establishing a favorable recovery following disaster.  Working with professional photographer Colleen Leslie and Riverview Medical Center’s board-certified art therapist Mary Gambarony, the ten participating teenagers in Message Me: HOPE will display their sources of hope in the gallery exhibit.

In addition to the Message Me: HOPE classes and gallery exhibit, the Art Therapy Program at Riverview Medical Center offers healing-art programs to disaster-recovery victims, those affected by chronic and terminal illness, death, cancer and more.  Founded in 1980, the program was one of the first of its kind in the Northeast.

Along with The Collective Art Tank, Message Me: HOPE is supported by Salt Studios, The Sand Pebble Motor Lodge and Point Pleasant Manor.


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The Collective Art Tank will celebrate the opening of Message Me: HOPE from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Saturday, March 7 in its downtown studio space located at 529 Bangs Avenue, Asbury Park.  To learn more about the Art Therapy Program at Riverview Medical Center, visit  For more information about The Collective Art Tank, visit

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Allan Dean

Allan Dean is editor, publisher, and founder of the Atlantic Highlands Herald. Published since 1999 and selected in 2000 by the Borough of Atlantic Highlands as one of their official newspapers, making...