The art show is juried, in that representative work of all participating artists is reviewed to assure that the show
remains fine arts only. Slides or photographs are required from first time exhibitors -- who nearly always seem to
ask to be invited back. The awards for the fine arts show have attracted the attention of artists from throughout
the southeast. A judge from outside the area is brought in to disperse the honors. Attempts are made to bring
new and varied media to the show, which now accepts original computer art and fine art jewelry as well as the
traditional forms of presentation. The result is a unique collection of paint media, photography, metal work,
glass, hand thrown pottery, sculpture, and wood carving. Artists are encouraged to demonstrate their expertise
during the show, and talk to interested persons, especially children who may become the artists of tomorrow. The
show is extremlly artist-friendly with an easy jurying process and lots of Columbus hospitality. This is a great show
for first-time exhibitors. There is as page on the site with Helpful hints for all artists. The web site has a monthly
newsletter, and artists entering the show are offered free web pages for the months surrounding the show.
In addition to the entry forms sent to potential artists, local companies and corporations are offered the
opportunity to sponsor an employee, who is an artist, and be listed on that person’s booth tag as a sponsor in the
show. These artists are subject to the same jury process as the other artists, but the entry fee may be paid by
the employer. Helpful hints for first time exhibitors are available at no charge from the event committee.
The roots of Arts on the River : Main Street Village Fall Arts Festival
Arts on the River! is a cultural arts festival held each October in various locations near the Columbus
Riverwalk overlooking the Chattahoochee River,currently in the median of the 1100 block of Broadway. It
evolved from the Columbus Artists’ Guild’s Fall Arts Festival, held for many years in various locations --
Wynnton Shopping Center, then for eight years at Main Street Village in the northern part of town. When
that event was discontinued, the show became a part of the Columbus Uptown Jam for two years, utilizing
the old Cunningham Building. Though a good opportunity, the Guild found that this venue was not the ideal
event for the fine arts, and in 1996, struck out on its own with no sponsors, to the Green Space at the foot
of 10th St. In 2006, the Guild removed itself as a sponsor, citing such reasons as not wanting to share
award money with out of town artists. The money then earmarked for the show was claimed by the general
treasury and used for other things. The event continues in partnership with WTVM, the local ABC affiliate,
and Uptown Columbus, Inc., the 501c3 sponsor to whom donations are tax deductible. The Columbus
Artists' Guild is no longer associated with the show in any way, and has actually improved the show since
the association ended.
Moving from the oval Green Space due to construction, the show went to the Chattahoochee Promenade
south of the Coca Cola Space Science Center, and in 2008 was moved to the 1100 block of Broadway
amidst the new streetscape and sculpture walk. Little else has changed in the format; all members of the
Columbus Cultural Arts Alliance are invited to distribute literature and advertise tickets. Artists visiting
from out of town are advised to bring cameras and sketch pads, as the beautiful river area is a great
resource for new material. Entertainment is scheduled throughout the day, budget permitting, and a few
local food vendors are on site, ads well as local restaurants and shops within easy reach. The event is
free to the public, allowing access to anyone who may be interested, and the entire event is handicapped
accessible. The Rankin Arts Center has art related activities for children, with hands-on experience.
A student art show was held in conjunction with the adult fine art show at one time, and there are hopes
to bring back this portion of the event. This is totally dependent on getting a sponsor and MCSD
|1994 -THE BANKS BUILDING
1995- THE CUNNINGHAM BUILDING
The Green Space was really great, just made for an art show. Many people didn't get all the way to the
river at first, but soon word got around. There was room for other organizations of the Columbus
Cultural Arts Alliance (CCAA) too have tables to display and sell tickets, etc.
Though a good opportunity, the Guild found that this venue was not the ideal event for the fine arts,
and in 1996, struck out on its own with no sponsors, to the Green Space at the foot of 10th St. In
2006, the Guild removed itself as a sponsor, citing such reasons as not wanting to share award
money with out of town artists. The money then earmarked for the show was claimed by the general
treasury and used for other things.
CCAA displays, horse and buggy rides and entertainment were all a part of
Arts on the River in the Green Space.
2001 - 2003
LOIS TRYON, WAYNE BENNETT,
CONGRESSMAN MAC COLLINS, CHUCK
LEONARD PRESENTING AWARDS
SENIOR WINNER SHELBY NORTHCUT
2006 - 2007
A “Special Purchase Award” began in 2000, with donations collected for the purchase of a painting which is
then donated to a local facility such as Columbus Hospice, the Ronald McDonald House, or Heritage Hills, the
Alzheimer’s care facility. It has been replaced by the Mike Tryon Award, a cash award inspired by the husband
of the shows founder and main helper, who died of cancer in 2012.
For visiting artists who decide to spend the weekend, maps and accommodation information is furnished, and
the 12 mile Riverwalk offers a great opportunity for biking, walking or jogging. The event also serves as an
opportunity to bring visitors to Columbus, be they artists or shoppers, who will then hopefully return to visit the
other sights and locations in the city. Working in conjunction with the Columbus Visitors’ Bureau, efforts are
made to draw people from outside the community and to promote the advantages of Columbus as a tourist
Recently sponsorship once again changed, and RiverCenter for the Performing Arts became the new location
as well as a non-profit sponsor. Well suited as a sponsor, this venue is well known for it’s symphony and
Broadway productions. A state of the art facility, RiverCenter is renowned throughout area and beyond.
WEATHER IS ALWAYS
A FACTOR IN