May 2015 Laura Hudson featured in Solo Exhibit at Tennessee Art League


Butterflies Laura Hudson

Butterflies Laura Hudson

HAPI artist Laura Hudson has a solo exhibit at the Tennessee Art League in May 2015.  Laura likes to feature lots of colorful birds, flowers and friends of nature in her artwork.  She has created several new pictures that will be shown in the Tennessee Art League exhibit.  Her work will be seen during the Downtown Art Crawl  on Saturday, May 2, 2015 when art galleries are open in the evening for visits and appreciation of the artworks.


Laura likes to make her drawings come to life.  She says she likes to make people happy with her art with lots of beautiful scenes.  She gets her ideas from places she has seen in pictures, places she would like to go, beautiful jungle scenes, and seasonal celebrations.


Legislative Plaza exhibit of Art for Awareness

The Legislative Plaza Gallery is filled with colorful artwork brought by artists from across Tennessee to Art for Awareness. Over 80 artworks are exhibited.  Visitors are saying the pictures make them stop and take notice of the talented artists.  The Legislative Plaza Gallery is open to the public Monday – Friday during the day . The mural “Recovery through Art” is included in the exhibit.



“Recovery through Art”

Recovery through Art mural

Recovery through Art mural

Mural introduced at Art for Awareness

During 2014 the ReConnect Nashville art class sponsored by the Healing Arts Project, Inc. created one cohesive artwork under an Arts Builds Communities grant funded under an agreement with the Tennessee Arts Commission. Members of the class worked together to tell their story of recovery through the arts and Haiku poetry.


The group started by thinking of positive ways we realize recovery.  All positive symbols in the painting of hope, health, promise, community, unity, prayer and love celebrate recovery.  The people holding hands represent community and friends working together in peace and unity.


The skyline represents any city and the city and community based activities that are part of recovery.  The rainbow represents promise and hope.  The butterflies and flowers are the beauty in nature and the healing power of spending time amidst creation and life.  The girl praying represents that faith is a vital component of recovery.


The mural is made up of 16 canvas squares each 12” x 12” painted by individual members of the class.  Viewers will have more understanding about the value of working together as a team, the feeling of trust among the artists, and their positive faith in the future.


Haiku poetry was written by the class members to reflect on their experience.  These are hand printed on Suminagashi monoprint water color paper the individual artists made for their Haiku.


Haikiu 3

Haikiu 3


Means speaking up

4 myself

To tell the whole world


Coming together

As a city of helpers

Loving one and all


I am a rainbow

Rainbows are filled with colors

And embraced with love



The project drew inspiration from the poem “Life” written by Belinda Harris, one of the class members.


Nothing in LIFE comes easy

As you will soon find

There is much more to LIFE

Than its complex design

Life is full of disappointments,

Things that get you down.

LIFE is full of happiness;

It makes the world go ‘round,

LIFE is a constant journey

There are no breaks in between

LIFE is a firm reality,

Not just a simple dream.

LIFE (our mere existence) is to be celebrated every step of the way!


Belinda Harris


Speaking to the artists

Speaking to the artists


Art for Awareness “Healing and the Artistic Spirit”


More than 100 persons in mental health and addiction recovery from across the state of Tennessee attended Art for Awareness on Wednesday, March 18, 2015 at War Memorial Auditorium.  “Healing and the Artistic Spirit” was the theme of the 10th year of the event sponsored by the Healing Arts Project, Inc. and the Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services. 

The highlight of the afternoon was hearing from the artists as they shared their own story, how creating art has helped them enjoy life, or other comments. Each speaker was recognized with a round of applause.

Creative artwork was brought by close to 100 of those who attended the afternoon program.  This art was all put into view on easels and tables so the individual works of art could be appreciated.  Comments were heard that this year’s art is outstanding among all the years of Art for Awareness.

All artworks will be hung in Legislative Plaza during April and May so persons walking through the hallway can absorb the talent and artistry of the artists. Each artist brought their picture ready to hang for the Legislative Plaza exhibit.  A name card will be placed by each artwork with the name of the artist, title of the picture, artist’s statement and hometown. This information will help the viewers understand and appreciate each artist and the message in their art.


March 18 Events at War Memorial Auditorium

Behavioral health advocates from across the State of Tennessee meet at 9:30 am on March 18, 2015 in War Memorial Auditorium, 301 Sixth Avenue North, Nashville, for Behavioral Health Day on Capitol Hill.  The morning  program will have important information on the issues involving behavioral health in this legislative session, and attendees will learn how to deliver an effective message to legislators through advocacy training.  Artwork on exhibit will include the mural “Recovery through Art” created under an Arts Builds Communities grant funded under an agreement with the Tennessee Arts Commission.  The members of ReConnect Nashville worked together as a creative group to tell their story of recovery through the art and Haiku poetry.   Art for Awareness pictures created by artists from across the state will also be on exhibit.

art for awareness

Art for Awareness starts at 1 pm in the Auditorium with persons sharing one artwork with the group and leaving it for exhibit in Legislative Plaza during April and May 2015. A group picture will be taken and every artist bringing a picture will take home a supply of art materials.  Each picture on exhibit in Legislative Plaza will have the name of the artist, the title of the picture, where they are from, and their statement about how they feel about making art.  Visitors to Legislative Plaza, state legislators, and government officials will be acquainted with the artists through these name cards.  HAPI partners with the Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services to sponsor Art for Awareness to celebrate how art contributes to recovery and the healing it brings.



The Big Payback

The Big Payback

The Healing Arts Project, Inc. – HAPI – is registered for The Big Payback on May 5, 2015, sponsored by The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee.  This is a 24-hour, online giving event to increase philanthropy in Middle Tennessee.  In 2014, the first year of The Big Payback, 525 nonprofits received donations of nearly $1.5 million to support services in the community.  The goal is to inspire the public to show pride in their community and contribute to the life-changing work of local nonprofits.

HAPI has set a goal of receiving donations from 100 supporters during the 24 hours beginning 12 am on Tuesday May 5, 2015 and lasting until 12 am on Wednesday, May 6.  Donations will be accepted through The Big Payback authorized secure website.


HAPI will use the funds from The Big Payback for services to artists in mental health and addiction recovery.  HAPI artists share what creating art means to them:


“Creating art makes me feel happy and good about myself.”

“Creating art is a way of expressing myself and a way of not worrying about my troubles.”


Watch for more information about supporting HAPI in The Big Payback.



The Breaking Ground Annual Arts Issue

is published by the Tennessee Council on Developmental Disabilities.  This issue included pictures by these HAPI artists:  Kathy Tupper with “Annie C. Ankum”; Laura Hudson with “Color Burst”; Eric Brito with “White Noise”; Darrell Pepper with “Colorful Jug”; Shree McGruder with “The Wharf”;  and LeAnn Wilson with “Alaskan Mountains.”  Shown below under sold at art auction.



Phoenix Art Gala Celebration

Click here to see the video coverage by News Channel 5 of Phoenix Art Gala


Phoenix award winners

Phoenix award winners

Fifty six original HAPI artworks were sold along with five celebrity items in the Silent Auction.  Guests went home with beautiful artworks created by 23 talented individuals.  HAPI will use the proceeds to fund the many projects  provided throughout the year which include art classes, materials and exhibits.  Proceeds from the auctioned artwork are split between HAPI and the artists.


Four Phoenix Friends Awards that to honor services to show the value of the arts in recovery were presented at the Gala .  Tom Starling, Ed. D., CEO/President Mental Health America of Middle Tennessee, was Master of Ceremonies.  The award recipients were Kathy Tupper, Spirit of Artists;  Jennifer Stow, Volunteer Friend;  Lori Ward, Community Friend;  and The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee, Business Friend.


Twenty sponsors, the largest number ever, supported the fifth annual Phoenix Art Gala and the importance of the arts in recovery.  They were recognized in signage and on the program.


Jonathan Brown, Nashville guitarist who has played guitar on the Grand Ole Opry, entertained during the evening.  The Hilton Garden inn Vanderbilt set up four food stations serving tasty food throughout the evening.


Art Auction Sales

Guests at the Gala bought pictures to enjoy.




Colorful Jug by Darrell Pepper

Colorful Jug by Darrell Pepper

The Wharf by Shree Lynn Brown-McGruder

The Wharf by Shree Lynn Brown-McGruder

White Noise by Eric Brito

White Noise by Eric Brito

Butterflies  Laura Hudson

Butterflies Laura Hudson

Everything Is Coming Up Roses Barbara Shirley

Everything Is Coming Up Roses Barbara Shirley

HipHop Augie Collier

HipHop Augie Collier


The Whim, Eric Brito

The Whim, Eric Brito

tinsel. Eric Brito

tinsel. Eric Brito

Phoenix Flower Mark Million

Phoenix Flower Mark Million


Dancing Dolphin Donna Hawkiins

Dancing Dolphin Donna Hawkiins

Phantomesque Mask Eric Brito

Phantomesque Mask Eric Brito


Future City by Augie Collier

Future City by Augie Collier


Dance Machine  Tony Fleming

Dance Machine Tony Fleming


Pryamid of Life Terry Cooper

Pryamid of Life Terry Cooper


Watering Can  Laura Hudson

Watering Can Laura Hudson


Iris in a Vase John Sneed

Iris in a Vase John Sneed


In Fligiht Beverly Hinkle

In Fligiht Beverly Hinkle


Phoenix Friends Awards


Kathy Tupper, 2015 Spirit of Artists, is a gifted artist who works independently with great skills to express her vision and pleasure in creating.  She generously shares her pictures in HAPI exhibitions. She explores different techniques and vivid colors in her work, and especially enjoys watercolors.


Jennifer Stow, 2015 Volunteer Friend, came to HAPI as a volunteer photographer through Hands on Nashville and each year records  HAPI events. Her photographs of the Gala have been used in the Tennessean, on the HAPI website, Facebook and in other media resources, to publicize the Healing Arts Project, Inc. and the Phoenix Art Gala in the community.


Lori Ward, Senior Manager of Public Relations at the Tennessee Performing Arts Center, 2015 Community Friend, has coordinated with HAPI on art exhibits in the TPAC Polk Level Gallery.    Through this opportunity HAPI has been able to raise awareness of many thousands of Tennessee citizens about the importance of art in recovery and the healing that art brings.  The TPAC mission—to provide a lifetime of meaningful and relevant experiences in the performing arts—is made real through these HAPI art exhibits.


The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee, 2015 Business Friend,  enriches the quality of life in Middle Tennessee for those who truly benefit from their support through grants to nonprofits for charitable purposes including the arts.  The Community Foundation is hosting the second annual “Big Payback” on May 5, 2015 when Middle Tennessee nonprofits receive unrestricted dollars to address pressing community needs.  HAPI receives a grant for artistic services from The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee and participates in The Community Foundation Giving Matters program.


Thanks to our sponsors!!

Platinum:  Amerigroup, Centerstone, UnitedHealthcare Community Plan, Baxter Family

Gold:  Mental Health Cooperative, Rolling Hills Hospital, Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services

Silver:  Blue Cross Blue Shield Tennessee, Psychiatry at Ashwood, MacDonald Family, Tennessee Disability Coalition, Tennessee Mental Health Consumers’ Association, Volunteer Behavioral Health

Bronze:  Benton Counseling and Consulting Services, Generations Gaither, NAMI Tennessee, Park Center, Pieces to Peace, Inc., Mental Health America of Middle Tennessee, TAADAS



Jonathan Brown  entertains at Phoenix Art Gala

Jonathan Brown entertains at Phoenix Art Gala

Jonathan Brown, Nashville Guitarist, will be providing background music during the Phoenix Art Gala on February 5 at the Hilton Garden Inn Vanderbilt.  Jonathan has played several times at the world famous Grand Ole Opry.   He has established himself in the community of guitar players for his fingerstyle guitar.  Brown plays both his own original compositions and classics in a distinctive, relaxing style.


Celebrity Items Sold in the Auction

Five special Celebrity items were sold in the Auction.  HAPI thanks the donors.


Epiphone Guitar signed by Vince Gill and Amy Grant

“A Bird in the Hand” mixed media by Jan Batts

“Garden Kimono” and “Sailor’s Kimono” by Libby Byler

“Baby Falls in Cherokee National Forest” photograph by Jeff Fladen

“Demarcation” oil painting by Kirk Seufert





Autographed Guitar

Frist Art Center Community Partner

The 2015 Spring Art Trunk provided to community partners by the Frist Center for the Visual Arts is “Telling tales:  Stories and Legends in 19th Century American Art.”  The Nashville Reconnect Peer Center art class will be using the Art Trunk in March 2015 and will make a visit to the Frist to see the exhibit in April.  The Frist Center’s outreach program sponsors the Community Partners to effectively engage individuals, communities and organizations to ensure that the arts touch people’s lives.



Bookmarks Distributed in Public Library Branches

HAPI prints bookmarks each year featuring original artwork and distributes them at public library branches, conferences and health fairs.  This year two bookmarks were printed.  One features “Flower Vase” by Laura Hudson and the other bookmark features “Colorful Jug” by Darrell Pepper.  The bookmarks list the statewide Mental Health and Addiction Crisis number to call 1-855-274-7471.  The bookmark also lists some well known persons who contributed to society and lived with a mental illness.

The Healing Arts Project, Inc.HAPI – is a nonprofit charitable organization that provides an avenue for persons in mental health and addiction recovery to express their creativity through a wide range of artistic endeavors.  In this way we raise awareness in the community and help combat stigma about these disorders, thus promoting understanding, acceptance and success.  Look at our opportunities and news pages here on our website to find out more about the artists and the activities of HAPI, and opportunities for you to become involved.




Everglades by Laura Hudson

Artwork hanging in the Fourth Floor Gallery at the Historic Metro Courthouse in Nashville has changed recently in the ongoing Gallery space outside the courtrooms of Chancellor Claudia Bonnyman and Chancellor Carol McCoy.  These colorful pictures include “Orange Sunshine” by Alea Griffin and “Everglades” by Laura Hudson.  The Courthouse is open daily from 8 am to 5 pm.

Orange Sunshine by Alea Griffin





HAPI partners with TAADAS for art sales

TAADAS (Tennessee Association of Alcohol, Drug & other Addiction Services) and the Healing Arts Project, Inc.  are partnering to promote HAPI art for sale in the TAADAS Recovery Bookstore located at the TAADAS office at 1321 Murfreesboro Pike, Suite 155.  The collection of pictures available make meaningful gifts as the sales benefit the artists.  The office contact telephone is 615-780-5901. The bookstore is open Monday through Friday from 8 am to 5 pm.

Faith, Hope and Recovery in Letters 2014


The new collection of original poems and essays by Tennessee individuals in mental health and addiction recovery illustrated with original HAPI artworks is available for distribution.  The theme of the collection “I Raise My Voice” reflects reaching a place in the journey of recovery where you find your voice, and then raise your voice with hope and faith.  The booklet contains an updated list of “Where to Find Help” listing available resources for individuals and families needing help with mental health and addiction.  Printing this booklet is made possible by a grant from UnitedHealthcare Community Plan. To receive a copy of “Faith, Hope and Recovery in Letters 2014” send your name, address and a donation for postage to HAPI at PO Box 23584, Nashville, TN  37202.


Artwork in Centerstone Ongoing Exhibits


HAPI partners with Behavioral Health Organizations to sponsor the Healing Arts Project, Inc.  Centerstone, Inc. created the Jane Baxter Gallery at the Ella Hayes Building, 1101 6th Avenue North,  to showcase the artwork of the their client artists from preschool through adults served by Centerstone programs.  HAPI provides art classes at the Centerstone ReConnect Peer Support Centers in Nashville, Clarksville, Dickson, Columbia, Tullahoma and Shelbyville.  The art created by the ReConnect artists has recently been changed in the Jane Baxter Gallery.  You can see the new art by visiting the Ella Hayes Center entrance on Madison Street and proceeding to the second floor.


HAPI Outreach Card


HAPI will be distributing a colorful new outreach card at the Back to School Festival that carries the HAPI logo.  Our logo is our brand with vibrant, alive colors and includes the website where visitors can find out more about HAPI services that bring opportunities in creative expression to persons in mental health and addiction recovery.

Happy outreach card front

Visit the website at www.healingartsprojectinc.org  and Facebook to learn more about the Healing Arts Project, Inc.


Email healingartsproject@gmail.com for more information about events and opportunities.


HAPI Gifts

HAPI Notecards and Artwork make great gifts for the coming holidays.  Proceeds of sales go back to the Artists.  Order on our Opportunities page. These make wonderful gifts for Valentine’s Day, birthdays and other special events.


The Healing Arts Project, Inc – HAPI – provides an avenue for persons in mental health and addiction recovery to express their creativity through a wide range of artistic endeavors.  In this way we raise awareness in the community and help combat stigma about these disorders, thus promoting understanding, acceptance, and success.


HAPI has been supporting the creative arts for persons in mental health and addiction recovery since 2004.


Art classes and art materials are supported by grants and provide a creative outlet for over 300 individuals in mental health and addiction recovery in Middle Tennessee. Art classes are taught by professional artists at mental health peer support centers. Funding partners include the Tennessee Arts Commission, the Metro Nashville Arts Commission, the Memorial Foundation, United Healthcare Community Plan, and the Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee.  Volunteers from Hands on Nashville and other individuals donate services and art materials.


HAPI exhibits artworks in community sites including public libraries, galleries and churches.  The opportunity to show their artwork in public increases the self-esteem and self-confidence of the artists.  They are seen as persons with abilities and talent, not with disabilities. Check our calendar of events for schedules.