“Hope for Habitat: Katrina X” celebrates the healing power of the arts and will benefit the East St. Tammany Habitat for Humanity.

As the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina approaches, those affected by the storm are likely to experience anxiety as images of devastation are replayed through local, regional and national media.

According to Kim Bergeron, event curator for “Katrina X,” the local arts community is working to shift the focus from the destruction to that of the rebuilding and rebirth, and the instrumental role the arts played in community healing.

“ ‘Hope for Habitat: Katrina X’ will feature the works of 19 of those artists with an exhibit, a commemorative 10th anniversary book, art workshops and a community art project,” she said.

The exhibit will be on display in the Slidell Cultural Center in City Hall from July 24 to Aug. 8. The opening reception will take place from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Friday, July 24, with exhibit hours continuing from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays, and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturdays.

Participating artists include Connie Born, Kenny Bridges, Mary Christopher, Charlotte Lowry-Collins, Tami Curtis, John Doherty, Phil Galatas, Joel Geiger, Carol Hallock, Mandie Manzano, Kelly Landrum-Hammell, Nelle Landry, Michael Reed, Adam Sambola, Rose Marie Sand, Caron Sharpe, Stephan Wanger and Bergeron.

Events are presented in partnership with the East St. Tammany Cultural Economy Coalition, an independent coalition of artists, arts organizations and businesses impacted by the cultural economy, working together to grow the arts, economic impact and artist appreciation.

After the exhibit closing, artwork will return to City Hall on Aug. 29, as part of commemorative events hosted by Slidell and St. Tammany Parish government. The works will be auctioned online on the storm’s anniversary, with proceeds supporting participating artists and East St. Tammany Habitat for Humanity.

The “Hope for Habitat: Katrina X” exhibit includes a fiddle painted by Sambola and signed by the Charlie Daniels Band.

Guests who visit the upcoming exhibit will have an opportunity to add farewell messages to Katrina on art boards that will serve as the back side of what will become an 8-by-12-foot community art project. Titled “Rebirth,” the artwork will feature a large, collaged tree trunk, a background “sky” created with messages of hope and signed paper leaves.

Requests for uplifting messages and the leaf signatures are being distributed internationally online. The resulting work of art will be auctioned in November during East St. Tammany Habitat for Humanity’s “Home Is Where the Art Is” auction.

For details, call Bergeron at (985) 640-0169.