The Decatur Arts Alliance
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2015 Decatur Arts Festival

Written on May 7, 2015 at 12:00 pm, by Angie Macon

Downtown Decatur comes alive on Memorial Day weekend for the annual Decatur Arts Festival. The festival takes over downtown, extending from the Decatur Recreation Center to the downtown square, including East and West Ponce de Leon Avenue, Clairemont Avenue and the Dalton Gallery at Agnes Scott College.

This year’s festival will be bursting with artful opportunities and events — artist market, live musical performances, improvisational and stand-up comedy, a children’s festival and parade, literary events, dance performances and more. And don’t forget the pre-festival events – starting with this year’s poster unveiling on May 7 – and art celebrations throughout the month including Sidewalk Saturdays, the Fine Arts Exhibition, and DeKalb History Center Exhibits.

For more details visit

Introducing The Decatur Artway

Written on April 15, 2015 at 4:22 pm, by Angie Macon
A brand new artful opportunity in the city of Decatur:

The Decatur Artway kicks off this year as Decatur’s outdoor art gallery, featuring five selected sculptures scattered throughout the downtown square. Sculptures will be displayed on temporary loan for two years, creating a dynamic rotating collection of public art around town. The Artway will include a printed walking, biking, and/or driving tour of the sculptures, a mobile-friendly online tour, and interactive community programming.

The Decatur Artway is presented by the Decatur Arts Alliance in partnership with the Decatur Tourism Bureau and the Decatur Downtown Development Authority.

Submit your sculpture! The deadline for submission is June 22, 2015. Selected works will be installed September 2015 and may be for sale. Accepted artists will receive a $2000 honorarium. See full call-for-entry details below.


The Decatur Artway – Submission Guidelines

All submissions must be entered through

Please include:
- An artist statement/bio of no more than 1000 characters
- A brief project overview of no more than 1000 characters

Media Images – 3 total (front view, back view, detail)

The Decatur Arts Alliance seeks sculptures to be placed in Downtown Decatur as part of the Decatur Artway. Sculptors are encouraged to be a part of this two-year outdoor sculpture exhibition September 2015 through September 2017. Selected artists will be awarded an honorarium of $2000. The installed work may be available for sale. Artwork sold as a result of the Decatur Artway will be subject to a 20% commission, which will be deducted from the purchase price and retained by the Decatur Arts Alliance.

The sculpture must be available for the duration of the two-year contract. All submissions must be professionally constructed of durable materials that will withstand the elements. All durable outdoor media are encouraged.

Please attach three images per submission that clearly show a front view, a back view, and one detail shot. Artists may submit more than one sculpture for consideration but each sculpture must have three images specified. A new or additional CaFE account and registration is required for additional sculpture submissions.

Please give all dimensions and a stated insurance value for the artwork. There are currently no restrictions in size; however the work will be placed in a well-traveled streetscape. Please briefly describe the work’s installation method. Selected artists are responsible for transportation to and from the installation site. The artwork must be delivered exhibit-ready, stable, and well fabricated.

Artwork deemed unsuitable for public display will not be accepted. Only completed, ready-to-loan work will be accepted. Project concepts or maquettes will not be considered. The City of Decatur is responsible for all cost for materials and workmanship during the installation, including but not limited to final site preparation, plinth, cleanup, and repair of any damage caused during installation. The City of Decatur will insure the artwork for the duration of the exhibition. All sculptures will be listed on promotional material for the Decatur Artway.

The deadline for submission is June 22, 2015.

Timeline (subject to change)
Application deadline: June 22
Jury date: June 29-July 3
Artist notification: July 15
Installation begins: September 15

Submission to entry constitutes agreement to the conditions set forth within the application. A lease agreement for the exhibition will be executed after selection notification has been made.

Purr: Dreams of Everyday House Cats

Written on April 13, 2015 at 12:56 pm, by Angie Macon

Tom Zarrilli, “The Mysterious Mirror of Mr. Wain,” 2014

An Exhibition at the Decatur Arts Alliance Gallery  |  May 8 – June 13
113 Clairemont Ave., Downtown Decatur
Opening Reception: Friday, May 8, 6-8 pm
On View: Tuesdays-Saturdays, 10 am-4 pm

Purr, Dreams of Everyday House Cats, features paintings by Tom Zarrilli, an Atlanta-based artist, photographer and children’s librarian. The series depicts the fanciful dreams and fantasies of Zarrilli’s cats Joey and Petey. The work also pays homage to a variety of artists ranging from Rousseau to Wain who have influenced Zarrilli throughout his life.

About Tom

A long-time Atlanta resident, Tom Zarrilli has exhibited art throughout the US for the past ten years. He has written about and extensively documented roadside memorials and yard sales. His conceptual works include A Year in the Yards of Clutter, an interactive installation that functioned as a yard sale, and Grand Lago de Atlanta, a proposal to replace Atlanta’s expressways with a large lake. Purr is the first solo exhibition of his paintings in Atlanta.

Artist statement

“My initial motivation when I began this series was to capture what I envisioned as the dreams and fantasies of my two housebound cats Petey and Joey. Each work appears as part of a story but it is up to the viewer to decide how they flow and fit together.

The series also marks my transition from a documentary photographer and conceptual artist to a painter. To mark the transition I have sought to continue the humor and novelty of my photographic and conceptual work in my painted images. In the work I also have paid homage to the visual artists ranging from Louis Wain to John Stuart Curry who inspired me over the years. I created these paintings seeking to humor, entertain and allow my obsession with my cats to run wild.”

Home page image: Tom Zarrilli, “In the Peaceable Kingdom,” 2014


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Getcha Tickets Now for April Fools Comedy Night at 3 Taverns!

Written on March 5, 2015 at 2:52 pm, by Angie Macon
Join us Wednesday, April 1, 7:30 pm.
Tickets available online only from FreshTix.

Come on out for comedy!

Sample the latest batch of laughs and hand- crafted beers! The Decatur Arts Alliance and Three Taverns Brewery host a night of local joking with comedians, Alyssa Barnett, Debra Cole, Lew Lefton, Andrew Michael, Dulcé Sloan, and Dan Weeks.

Ticket price includes: a night of stand-up entertainment, brewery tour, Three Taverns tastings (six 5.5 oz pours, to be exact), and a tasting glass to take home.

Limited seats available. Order tickets online at

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The Book as Art 3.0: No Jacket Required Call for Entries

Written on March 4, 2015 at 11:57 pm, by Angie Macon
Artists who observe and interpret the idea of the book are invited to submit entries to the Decatur Arts Alliance’s inaugural juried exhibition visually celebrating the book form.

Artists’ books take many forms – from handmade and lusciously tactile to linear and informative, abstract and questioning to sculptural and monumental. Artists’ books can be a delight to the eye, a pleasure to the hand, and made tangible in forms that introduce us not only to new interpretations of an ancient concept but also to questions and ideas on 21st century form and format.

The Book as Art exhibition, July 24-Sept. 18 in the gallery at The Art Institute of Atlanta-Decatur, will be held in conjunction with the AJC Decatur Book Festival, the largest independent book festival in the country. It is expected to draw 85,000 book-lovers to downtown Decatur over Labor Day weekend (Sept. 5-6), demonstrating that books are cherished by multitudes in tangible and touchable form even as they morph into new forms and formats.

Entries for The Book as Art must be submitted digitally through (CaFÉ) April 15-May 29, 2015. 

For a pdf with more information about the exhibit, the jurors, and guidelines for entering, click here.

Sightings – Opening March 20 at the DAA Gallery

Written on March 4, 2015 at 2:02 pm, by Angie Macon
Works by artist Terry Drahos

Sightings features mixed media works by artist Terry Drahos, who divides her time between rural Nova Scotia and Atlanta. This series chronicles 13 years of travel between these two places – capturing split-second observations taken from car windows, walks, and moments at home. Drahos’ work is intuitive and spontaneous, inspired by momentary sightings of color, composition, and compelling content from the world around her. She applies an abstract approach along with formal design principles to photo-transfer and oil painting methods to create her works. Drahos writes:

“For the past 10 years my art practice has had an abstract nature, grounded in formal elements. While this work is a departure using photographs as the foundation to the paintings it maintains its grounding in the elements of art and principles of design.”

Drahos is an active member of the Nova Scotia arts community, serving on the Board of Directors of Visual Arts Nova Scotia, as a chairperson of the Alliance of Kings Artists, and as the founder and director of the Uncommon Common Art Project. Known primarily for her vibrant paintings in oil and encaustic, she occasionally works in other media such as sculpture and installation. Her work often examines social identity and perceptions. Drahos has exhibited nationally, and is the recipient of numerous grants and awards, including an Industry Growth Grant from Nova Scotia Tourism, Culture and Heritage. Her paintings are featured at Secord Gallery (Halifax, NS), Harvest Gallery (Wolfville, NS), and Koyman Gallery (Ottawa).

Visit to learn more.

Opening Reception
Friday, March 20 • 6-8 pm

On View
Through April 30
Tuesdays-Saturdays • 10 am-4 pm

Original artwork for sale during exhibition.

What Is Your Most Iconic Image of Decatur?

Written on January 15, 2015 at 11:02 am, by Angie Macon
Put It on a Postcard!


The 2015 Decatur Postcard Project is looking for artists, students, residents, businesses and members of the community who would like to submit images that reflect different aspects of the city. If you have photos or other artwork that captures the essence of what Decatur is all about and would like to share, send in your work. Submissions are welcome from all ages.

A jury will select six pieces that best represent Decatur for a set of postcards, which will go on sale in May. The cards will be available at the Decatur Visitors Center and local retailers.

Keep in mind as you select your entries: brides like to use the postcards for wedding “Save the Dates” and parents like to use them for children’s thank you notes.

Submission deadline: Friday, March 27, 2015.
More details about the guidelines and a printable application are available here. (PDF)

Additional forms
Artists release form (PDF)
Model release form (PDF)
Minor release form (PDF)

More information:



16 Likes, 3 Comments: Paintings by Leah Owenby

Written on January 13, 2015 at 9:27 am, by Angie Macon
Exploring an Addiction to Social Media

“This project started when I complimented a friend on her photograph and said she should frame it, says artist Leah Owenby. “We joked that it would never exist outside of Facebook, so I offered to paint it for her. When I took a screen shot for later reference, the ‘done’ and icons below tickled me.  Why not?, I thought, make that part of the painting as well?”

We receive a flood of information on social media including poignant, tender, and humorous displays of the human condition. But rarely do we stop for longer than a few seconds as we scan our feeds. In this series of “little paintings,” Leah Owenby lifts moments from Facebook, SnapChat, and Instagram and spends time with them, elevating the mundane, and making fleeting images into fine art. Each is the result of a mindful, meditative process, quite the opposite experience we often have as we mindlessly scroll through social media.

Leah adds, “The funny thing is as I work on these, I make sure to log OFF the actual sites, as they tend to distract and depress me.”

Leah Owenby is lucky enough to live and work where-it’s-greater in Decatur, Georgia. An alum and staff member of Agnes Scott College, she now works with all of her former art and theatre professors in a dream job that allows her time to be an artist and go home for lunch every day. Blending whimsy with sarcasm and bright colors, her art wanders between mediums from blind-contour portraits to diabetic assemblages. Visit her at, and of course, on Facebook . . .

Opening Reception
Friday, Jan. 30, 6-8 pm

On View
10 am-4 pm

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Sponsorships Available for the Decatur Arts Festival

Written on January 4, 2015 at 2:07 pm, by Angie Macon
Calling all businesses and organizations large and small!

Mark your calendar for the Decatur Arts Festival Memorial Day weekend, May 23 and 24.

If you are ready to:
- promote your product or service
- increase brand awareness
- sample or coupon to consumers
- collect customer leads
- engage with your target consumer

. . . you can bet the Decatur Arts Festival will deliver all this and more.

Ready to get started? To take the next steps, click here.

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Call for Artists for 2015 Fine Arts Exhibition

Written on January 3, 2015 at 5:39 pm, by Angie Macon
The Decatur Arts Alliance is now accepting entries for the Fine Arts Exhibition of the 2015 Decatur Arts Festival. Artist applications will be accepted through Jan. 5 through Feb. 23.

Download the complete details here.
Check out the 2014 Fine Arts Exhibition here.

The Alliance invites artists working in all media to apply for the juried exhibition that is a part of the 27th annual Decatur Arts Festival. This exhibition contributes a fresh and unique perspective to the festival and to an audience representing a broad spectrum of knowledge and appreciation of the arts, addressing this spectrum with a diversity of styles and media. Works selected for the show reflect a wide range of artists’ experiences and viewpoints, with excellence as a common thread. All works must be original and completed within the last two years.

Read more here.