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Art&Newport and NRF Present GAMES, GAMBLERS & CARTOMANCERS: The New Cardsharps

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Newport, RI, July 1, 2023 – Art&Newport and the Newport Restoration Foundation (NRF) are pleased to announce the opening of a contemporary art exhibit at 46 Clarke Street, otherwise known as “The Vernon House.” The exhibition is titled “GAMES, GAMBLERS & CARTOMANCERS: The New Cardsharps,” and features the work of seventeen artists who have revisited the storied art historical trope of card play. The free exhibition is open Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays from July 1 to October 1, 2023.

The exhibition, curated by Dodie Kazanjian and Alison M. Gingeras, uses Newport’s historical and contemporary card-playing customs as the basis to explore wide-ranging interpretations of cards and their associated cultures throughout history. Card games have been a mainstay of cultures around the world for centuries, a rich, global history that is reflected in the breadth of work in the exhibition.

Each of the artists in GAMES, GAMBLERS, & CARTOMANCERS has created work that engages with the iconography, mythologies, and practices of card play. The artists featured in the exhibition are Tina Barney, Cecily Brown,Francesco Clemente, Elizabeth Colomba, John Currin, Austin Eddy, Hadi Falapishi, Shara Hughes, Rashid Johnson, Sanya Kantarovsky, Karen Kilimnik, Sean Landers, Tala Madani, Rob Pruitt, Walter Robinson, Katja Seib, Katie Stout.

The venue for the exhibition, 46 Clarke Street (otherwise known as “The Vernon House”), is apt for an exhibition reflecting a complex and layered history. The Vernon House has housed generations of Newporters, and it has been witness to the evolution of Newport—from a thriving port-city reliant on the trans-Atlantic trade, to a depressed former economic-center, to the site of urban renewal projects and historic preservation efforts, to the modern, vibrant city today.

Colonization is present in the very fabric of the building and is a thread connecting the Vernon House to a wider conversation about the impact of colonization and globalization (both past and present). Many of the works in the exhibition engage with these same issues, as the evolution of card playing is tied into the history of colonization and cross-cultural exchange.

This is the first time The Vernon House will be open to the public following a multi-year project researching, investigating, and documenting the historic structure and the stories of the people who lived and worked in the house.

“The opening of the Vernon House, for this contemporary art exhibit, is really the first outward step, and a sign of the future, for the Newport Restoration Foundation,” said NRF President Frankie Vagnone. “Our strategic goal is to make NRF a deeply community based cultural organization that is open to a wide variety of voices and interpretation. For this reason, we’re not considering Vernon House as a traditional historic house museum, but rather a place for dialogue, education, and investigations into contemporary storytelling.”
Tickets for the free exhibition are available at


About Art&Newport:
Art&Newport is a nonprofit that aims to develop and host a series of city-wide visual arts presentations in Newport, Rhode Island. The goal is to put Newport, with its unique institutions and natural riches, on the map as a place to learn about and share the ideas and visions that only art and artists can provide.
Art&Newport will build on and further establish our town’s reputation as a leading cultural destination.

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