Jun 1 - Jul 28, 2024


Newport Visual Arts Center

777 NW Beach Drive, Newport, OR 97365



South Beach Salamander
Booker Bartow
June 1 – July 28, 2024
Upstairs Gallery
Newport Visual Arts Center

Saturday, June 1st, 12pm-5pm
Featuring entertainment by DJ True Justice
Light refreshments will be served

Booker Bartow is a descendant of indigenous people who survived the Wiyot Massacres by fleeing north along the Pacific Coast and settling an area now known as South Beach, Oregon, where Booker was raised. Both of his parents were visual artists, writers, and musicians: the family struggled financially, but his early years were filled with music, art, and long days spent searching for frogs and salamanders in the wetlands near his home. Discovering a discarded skateboard as a child led to a life-long obsession, resulting in broken bones, multiple concussions, but also a passion for sharing the sport through videography. His high school years were difficult due to the death of his mother, physical and mental health issues, and the use of drugs and alcohol, and, as Booker recalls, “I probably would have failed all together if it weren’t for art classes.”

Booker and his father—Rick Bartow, who gained national recognition for his art—had grown apart, but they rekindled their strong bond when Rick’s health failed and Booker became his caregiver. After Rick’s death, Booker attended the opening for an exhibit of his father’s work, and he was amazed by the power of artists to have a lasting impact. He rediscovered his love for visual art, for the joys of mixing mediums, experimenting, and approaching the process with a sense of innocence that comes from working with no rules or self-judgment. Although he still struggles with health issues, creating art allows him to “tune out the negative noise” around him and focus on what really matters. Booker says that if, through his art, he can also “impact someone in a positive way, or spark a conversation, then it’s even more amazing.”


Celebrating the next generation of Indigenous creators, five emerging artists come together in Where Waters Meet

Flowing from diverse backgrounds and tribes, these artists meet at the Newport Visual Arts Center and Performing Arts Center Galleries this summer, showcasing photography, videography, installation, painting, and basketry. Honoring heritage while establishing new paths of contemporary expression, Leonard Harmon, Leland Butler, Isabella Saavedra, Chantele Rilatos, and Booker Bartow open the door to rich perspectives in four exciting exhibits. CLICK TO LEARN MORE


Newport Visual Arts Center

777 NW Beach Drive, Newport, OR 97365 - Get Directions