Event Information

River Clay Fine Arts Festival 2019

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

Phone: 256-341-0562
Event Dates: 9/27/19 - 9/29/19
Application Deadline: 4/3/19 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
Five years in and River Clay remains a big hit with artists and collectors in the venerable Southeast fine art festival schedule!

Each year, our
 participating artists report great sales, exceptional event organization and unparalleled volunteer assistance and community enthusiasm. 

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

Supporting a healthy energy for the arts from an enthusiastic, art-buying population, our booming downtown Arts & Entertainment area including the Carnegie Visual Arts Center, Princess Theatre, the Alabama Center for the Arts and the Alabama Arts Hall of Fame has encouraged the festival to grow within its location in the lush greenspace surrounding City Hall. 2019 brings the opening of the Cook Museum of Natural Science (www.cookmuseum.org) located directly across the street from the River Clay festival site.  The broad reach of the Cook Museum will only help to increase River Clay's visibility and the awareness of our own community as well as that of other communities in the north Alabama area.  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 27, 28 and 29, 2019


General Information
"Very professionally run from application, to set up, to load out. The artists are appreciated with an exceptional party with patrons, not to mention they provide us lunches! The art is exceptional, and show is well balanced... they appreciate fine art and artists!" ... Roger Poer, Designs by R and R

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.  You'll find Huntsville, home of NASA, Redstone Arsenal and numerous technology/engineering firms boasts the highest per-capita level of education and income in Alabama, just 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 4-3-19
  • Artist notification 4-15-19
  • Deadline to accept and pay booth fee 5-15-19

Patron Preview and River Clay Rendezvous Event:
  • Friday evening event from 5 - 9 pm begins on the River Clay site with paid Patron preview of artist's booths and works.  Many sales are made this evening!  Light fare and beverages are provided for patrons, each artist and one assistant.  At approximately 6:30 p.m., artists close up and everyone walks across to the Rendezvous event located at the Alabama Center for the Arts for heavy hors d'oeuvres and beverages.  It's a great kick off to an even better weekend event!

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 for artist and one assistant
  • 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, McComm Group, EatDecatur (restaurant association), Athens State 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. In the event that no one in the open category is available, the space will be filled by the wait-listed artist with the highest score from all categories.

**RCFAF is a pet-friendly festival.  Your pet must be on a leash at all times and under control. In the case of aggression or incessant barking, your pet may need to be removed from the festival. Please be certain to clean up any messes left by your pet.

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.  No more than 20% of works displayed for sale may be 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 29, 2019.
3.  Photo ID is required at check-in.
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 require 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 29, 2019.
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 2019 RCFAF and allows RCFAF to use artists images in RCFAF marketing materials be it in print or by electronic means.  

9.  Extensive circulation of printed marketing materials leaves us unable to make last minute booth assignment changes.  If you have requirements for your booth location, please be certain you notify artistinfo@riverclay.org at the time of your acceptance and payment of booth fee.  We will try to accommodate reasonable and timely requests but can make no guarantee that your request can be met.


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 27, 2019. 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.