Event Information

River Clay Fine Arts Festival 2017

402 Lee Street, NE - City Hall Campus
Decatur, Alabama (South)

Phone: 256-341-0562
Event Dates: 9/22/17 - 9/24/17
Application Deadline: 4/3/17 Midnight CST

The application deadline has passed.


Images: 4 (a booth shot is required)

Fee (Non-Refundable Jury Fee): $35.00

You can submit up to 3 applications for this show.


Event Summary
River Clay was 2015’s breakout hit in the venerable Southeast fine art festival schedule!

2015's and 2016's participating artists reported great sales, wonderful Patron Party and exceptional organization and volunteer assistance as well as hospitality. 

River Clay can't wait to do it all again!

Continued energy for the arts from an enthusiastic, art-buying population, our booming downtown Arts & Entertainment area including the Carnegie Visual Arts Center, Princess Theatre and the Alabama Center for the Arts (home of the Alabama Arts Hall of Fame) has encouraged the festival to grow within its location in the lush greenspace surrounding City Hall. With the generous support of the City of Decatur, the Decatur-Morgan County Chamber of Commerce, the Decatur/Morgan County Convention and Visitors Bureau, Decatur Downtown Redevelopment Authority, and numerous other arts- and commerce-related organizations, we are eagerly anticipating another tremendously successful event to showcase the creativity and handiwork of artists from a wide region.

Event Dates:  September 22, 23 and 24, 2017

Friday September 22
Booth set-up 10-3pm. Artists who cannot complete booth set-up by 4pm must wait until Saturday morning booth set-up.
River Clay Fine Arts Festival Preview Party – Friday evening - artists, their guest and paid patrons
Saturday, September 23
Artist booth set-up begins 5:30am and must be completed by 8:15 am for show 9-5. 
Sunday, September 24
Opens at 10am and closes at 4pm.

General Information
Located in the beautiful Tennessee Valley, Decatur, Alabama is a burgeoning arts community whose City Hall Campus is surrounded by Alabama’s largest Victorian historic district and a picturesque, revitalized downtown complete with numerous bistros, restaurants and unique retail boutiques. The city of Decatur is conveniently located midway between Nashville and Birmingham.  Huntsville, home of NASA, Redstone Arsenal and numerous technology/engineering firms boasts the highest per-capita level of education and income in Alabama, is a mere 25 minutes to the east.

Artist Awards:  Cash awards for Best of Show, First, Second and Third Overall.  

Type of Show:  Outdoor Fine Art Show
Spaces Available:  70-75 spaces available

Important Dates:
  • Application deadline 4-3-17
  • Artist notification 4-15-17
  • Deadline to accept and pay booth fee 5-15-17
Artist Amenities:  
  • Indoor restrooms for artists
  • Air-conditioned hospitality center (water, snacks, swag bag, etc.)
  • Artist helpline/liasons
  • Booth sitters available
  • Breakfast and lunch, both Saturday and Sunday
  • Easy check in, volunteer help for load-in and load-out
  • Close, free parking
  • Tax booth on site
  • Artists will have an active link from the River Clay site to their artist website and will also be provided with information to drive customers to their booth
Marketing Strategy:  The majority of our River Clay budget is used in marketing this festival.  Our support system includes the City of Decatur, the Decatur-Morgan County Chamber of Commerce, the Decatur/Morgan County Convention and Visitors Bureau, Decatur Downtown Redevelopment Authority, the Carnegie Visual Arts Center, McWhorter Communications (McComm Group), EatDecatur (restaurant association), Athens University, the Alabama Center for the Arts, Calhoun Community College, numerous local industry and corporate entities allowing the award-winning* professional River Clay marketing team to aggressively promote this event. 

*2016 Gold ADDY Award for Integrated Brand Identity Campaign by the American Advertising Federation North Alabama awarded to McComm Group

Artists must be present during the entire festival and must personally staff their exhibit space. Event is rain or shine, no early departures permitted. No spouses, agents, dealers, or representatives may attend in place of the artist. Artists who sell their entire body of work must remain with their booths for the duration of the festival. Artists who break down displays or depart before closing time on any day of the festival will not be allowed to return the following day or to future shows unless proof of an emergency is presented.
**Artists are responsible for proper insurance and protection of work and structures. The festival is not responsible for damage to work or structures due to weather or unrelated incidents. Each artist is responsible for his/her own display in case of damage or loss. Artists will be held liable for any damage made by their tents or structures.
Collaborative Works:  Artists must submit separate applications, unless applying as a team. If artists are accepted as a team they may only exhibit the collaborative work they were accepted for.
Artists wishing to exhibit work produced in more than one media category must create separate Zapplication accounts with separate online user id's, set of digital images and jury fee for each category. Only one application may be submitted per body of work represented. Multiple applications must represent either work in different media categories or distinctly separate bodies of work within one category. No advantage is gained by submitting multiple applications for the same body of work in multiple categories.
A wait-list, by category, will be established based on jury scores. Wait-listed artists will be notified when a space becomes available within their medium.

**RCFAF is a pet-friendly festival.  Your pet must be on a leash at all times.

Exhibitor Obligations
1.  All work shown must be created by the exhibitor.  No mass-produced or commercially made items are acceptable.  Items made exclusively from commercial molds are prohibited.  Reproductions of original artwork may only be displayed in print stands, bins, or portfolios and must be clearly marked as reproductions.  The only exceptions to this rule are digital work and photography.
2.  River Clay is a rain or shine event.  Exhibitors must be present with their work for the duration of the show. Exhibitor’s employees may not substitute for the exhibitor. Booth displays must remain intact until the show ends at 4 pm on Sunday, September 24, 2017.
3.  Photo ID is required before you can exhibit your work.
4.  Only work representative of that submitted for jury may be exhibited. Displays will be viewed throughout the Festival. River Clay reserves the right to request removal of any work that differs from the images submitted and accepted as well as any inappropriate work or display. Failure to remove such work or abide by other rules set forth may result in applicant’s removal from the Festival and/or applicant being prohibited from future application. Applicant agrees to abide by all regulations outlined in this application, in the load-in and load-out instructions, the River Clay Exhibitor Information packet, security procedures, or any rule promulgated by the Board. Applicant acknowledges that failure to abide by regulations and repeated non-compliance will result in expulsion and ineligibility for judging, awards, and participation in future River Clay events including but not limited to its annual outdoor show. Expulsion of an exhibitor or participant from River Clay is without the necessity of any written notice and without legal recourse or right to rebate any portion of the fees paid.
5.  Each exhibitor is responsible for collecting Alabama state, county, and city sales taxes as required by law. Tax forms will be provided with registration packets at the festival, and tax personnel will be on site to facilitate tax collection prior to artists leaving River Clay grounds on Sunday, September 24, 2017.
6.  River Clay Fine Arts Festival retains the right to prevent an artist from exhibiting for conduct deemed, in the association’s sole discretion, unacceptable and/or detrimental to the mission and reputation of River Clay Fine Arts Festival.
7.  Exhibitors who violate rules or obligations, (such as exhibiting mass-produced or inappropriate merchandise, being incapacitated, leaving site), will be escorted from the site and will be required to return at the end of the festival to remove their work and may be prohibited from future application.

8.  Payment of booth fee automatically implies acceptance and participation in the 2016 RCFAF and allows RCFAF to use artists images in RCFAF marketing materials be it in print or by electronic means.  


Booth Information
Booth fee:  $150   
Booth size:  10x10 feet.  Artists will share space behind their booth for storage.
Booth Set Up/Tear Down:  Check in begins at 10 am on Friday September 22, 2017. Upon check-in, cars will be unloaded and moved before booth setup can begin.  Artists must plan to cart their supplies and artwork a very short distance to their booth sites. (Artists who have not checked in by 3 pm on Friday must wait until Saturday morning to unload and set up.)  Booths must be set up and ready for business by 4 pm on Friday to participate in Friday evening’s activities.  Artists who are unable to complete set up by 4pm on Friday may still attend the evening activities on Friday.  Saturday morning set up will begin at 5:30 and late arrival booths must be set up and ready for business by 9 am.
Security:  Professional overnight security will be provided.