This will be an in-person exhibit, visible to the public by appointment, and also visible virtually via our website. An Opening Reception and Awards Ceremony will be held virtually via LiveStream.


The Exhibition

is open to residents of McMinn, Monroe, Meigs, Bradley & Polk Counties

There are FOUR divisions

PRIMARY: any student grades K – 8
HIGH SCHOOL: any student grades 9 – 12
COLLEGE: any undergraduate & graduate student enrolled in or recently graduated from any higher learning institute
OPEN: all others ($10 entry fee)

General Entry guidelines

  • Artists/groups may submit up to two (2) original artworks
  • A group is two (2)+ people working together, such as an art club or class
  • The entry fee for Open Division is $10 per submission. No entry fee for the Primary, High School, and College Divisions
  • Entries must meet all entry criteria including theme, completed artist’s statement, and other restrictions (see Entry Criteria below)

All media are welcome! Wearables, jewelry, furnishings, sculpture, wall hangings. Let the creative spirit take you on an artistic journey.


You may click here to pay the Open Division fee online (you will still have to fill out the separate entry form below)

Entry Criteria

  1. Each piece must relate to life in a pandemic, whatever that means to you. Whether it be surrounding the virus itself, rising awareness of racial inequality, financial hardships/loss of job, isolation/quarantining, or anything else that has surfaced during this time that makes up the pandemic.
  2. Two- and three-dimensional works are acceptable.
  3. Artist’s Statements of no more than one hundred words must be submitted electronically by October 26 via entry form or email: Please include your name and “Life in 2020” in the subject line. Handwritten statements will not be accepted.
  4. Completed entries must fit through a standard door, be soundly constructed, and weigh no more than 60lbs.
  5. Free standing pieces may not exceed 24” x 24” of floor space.
  6. Hanging pieces must be ready to hang and not project more than 12” from the wall. If you have questions about whether or not your piece is considered ready to hang, visit this page.
  7. Exceptions may be made, with prior approval, for large sculpture, but it must be able to withstand outdoor display.
  8. The Visual Arts Committee of AACA will review each piece to determine if it meets all requirements and represents an appropriate level of craftsmanship.
  9. All pieces must have been created within the past two years.
  10. All work must be represent the theme of life in a pandemic.
  11. AACA reserves the right to refuse acceptance to any work that does not uphold our standards of community and tolerance.

Exhibition Calendar

  • October 26 Completed entry forms and payment of fees due (once you have received confirmation of entry form and fee, if applicable, your work is tentatively accepted in the show. See preliminary judging below)
  • October 27 Preliminary judging for appropriate content, construction, materials, and compliance with entry criteria. Those in non-compliance will be notified
  • October 27 – 30 Artworks accepted at The Arts Center
  • November 3 Exhibit begins
  • November 13, 5:30pm Virtual Opening Reception and Awards Ceremony Livestream on Facebook
  • January 4 Exhibit ends
  • January 5 – 8 Pick up artwork

Delivery and Pick-up of Work

The Arts Center | 320 North White St | Athens, TN
All delivery and pick-up must occur between 11am and 4pm
AACA is not liable for work left past January 8, 2020


over $1000 in cash and prizes!

The invited juror will judge qualifying entries prior to November 13. All decisions are final. Artists need not be present to win. Criteria for judging includes interpretation of stated theme, craftsmanship, artistic quality, and creativity.

Primary Division Cash Award For 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place
High School Division Cash Award For 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place
College Division Cash Award For 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place
Open Division Cash Award For 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place

Cash prizes made possible by grant funding from C. Scott & Muriel Mayfield Family Foundation.


Virtual Opening Reception for the artists, family, friends, and community via Facebook Livestream Friday, November 13, 2020
The reception will begin at 5:30pm and will include the announcement of the awards, to be followed by a guided tour of the exhibit.

Entry Form

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