Call Detail
Book As Art V.9: Muse
Entry Deadline: 6/4/21
Application Closed
Number of Applications Allowed: 3

Entry Fee (Decatur Arts Alliance): $30.00
Work Sample Requirements
Images | Minimum:Min. 1, Maximum:Max. 5
Video | Minimum:Min. 0, Maximum:Max. 1
Total Samples | Minimum:Min. 1, Maximum:Max. 5
Call Type: Exhibitions
Eligibility: International
State: Georgia

The Book as Art v. 9.0: Muse
Presented by the Decatur Arts Alliance
fDecatur, Georgia

August 13–October 1, 2021

The Decatur Arts Alliance (DAA) presents the ninth edition of the juried exhibition of artists’ books, The Book as Art, August 13–October 1, 2021. This edition will be installed once again at the Decatur Branch of the DeKalb County Public Library. If conditions allow, the DAA will sponsor a limited opening on Friday, August 27, 2021,or a virtual opening and tour of the exhibition. Details will be forthcoming.

Entries will be open April 19–June 4, 2021 on

Nine: a number both sacred and profane. This mystical numeral, both spiritual and scientific, is celebrated the world over and in all religions, representing the brightest ands darkest aspects of the celestial and the terrestrial. Fulfillment, completion, reflection, and birth are balanced with pain, misfortune, evil, and death.
                  For the Ancient Greeks, nine sisters born of heaven and memory gave inspiration to artists, scientists , and historians. They guided the feet and the fingers, moved the brush and the pen, swelled the chest, and sweetened the voice. But when their gifts of love and wisdom were overshadowed by hubris, the sisters punished and imprisoned those who forsook the purity of their spiritual gifts.
                  The muses still call out to artists world-wide, placing in their minds the seeds of creation, the word, the phrase, the form, are born and transformed upon the page. Held in the hand, a book can be a source of stability in unsettled times. Tactile and olfactory, the black and white pages conjure emotions and images that endure longer than flickering light on small screens. From tablet to folio, papyrus to scroll, song to psalm—all are created as a concept that becomes thought, becomes word, becomes book, becomes sculpture.
                  These objects, in an increasingly digital world, stubbornly survive and have proved a steady presence in our unprecedented isolation. Color and light, script and structure, translate thought and idea, and bestow upon us, the viewers, the fruit of artistic inspiration. The objects in this exhibition will interpret the concept of the book and invite the viewer to look beyond the printed page to where ideas, words, and symbols are transformed and are transfigured. They are expressive, iconic, mystical, and inspirational. They are, in form, muse.                  

                  We are interested in showcasing beautifully made volumes, sculptural and conceptual interpretations, and one-of-a-kind approaches to the book format. We also encourage artists to submit wall-hung interpretations.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we realize that shipping artwork may take longer than expected, be more expensive than planned, or may not be accessible to some artists at this time. We welcome international artists to submit works for consideration, but be cautious of the potential for added complications to the entry process. 


Several events are planned throughout the run of the show. The Georgia Center for the Book inaugurated a series of virtual tours of the exhibition, artist talks, and discussions in 2020 that will be continued in 2021. Through these presentations artists were able to talk in depth about their books, and lead us on virtual tours through their volumes. You can review these presentations at, and on the Georgia Center for the Book’s YouTube channel ( We encourage exhibiting artists to volunteer for these opportunities to showcase their work.

The Jurors:
Anna Embree is a Professor for the MFA Book Arts Program in the School of Library Science and Information Studies at the University of Alabama. She teaches courses and workshops in bookbinding, box making, and special topics in book preservation and book history. Anna has a strong interest in the physical and material aspects of book structures, collaborates with printers and papermakers on limited edition handmade books, and has exhibited widely.
     Anna's book work focuses on composition and form. When designing a single book or an edition, she works to unify content, structure, and materials. The goal is to create a visually engaging work that facilitates interaction with the content through purposeful mechanical and operational design choices.

Beth Shoemaker is the Rare Book Librarian at Emory University’s Stuart A. Rose Manuscript, Archive & Rare Book Library in Atlanta. Her work includes cataloging, collection development, teaching and curating exhibits in the Emory Libraries. In 2018 she co-curated the exhibit Common Thread: Women’s Experience through Artists’ Books at Rose Library and was recently a featured speaker on the role of artists’ books in academic libraries for the Form & Function from Afar Conference, organized by Book Paper Thread. At Emory she is the co-organizer of an event series called Bound with History, where each event is focused on a portion of the rare book collection, including artists’ books and pop-ups, and attendees get to have a hands-on experience with collection material.

Sande Wascher-James has been working with the book arts since the mid-nineties when she discovered that she could use all of the mediums she enjoyed working with in a format that varied greatly and had meaning—the book. One of the hallmarks of her work is purposefully using techniques such as embroidery and beading, which are considered “women’s work”, to deal with issues felt to be of importance to most women through the medium of book structures. The books are meant to be held in the hand and to be read, as well as to be displayed in their sculptural format. She makes both one-of-a-kind books and small editions, usually no more than two editions per year due to the intensive labor
     Involved in making them. Sande feels that the books need to be both artistically beautiful and have a text that is as powerful as the imagery. Sande is a full time studio artist whose work has been in many exhibitions, is held in both private and public collections, and in publications. She has been honored with awards for her work in exhibitions, and has work held by the National Museum of Women in the Arts, Yale, Harvard, Duke, University of Washington, and others.

First Place Award -                                     $1000.00
Second Place Award -                                  $700.00
Third Place Award -                                      $500.00
Merit Award -                                                $100.00

Purchase awards are being solicited.
An online catalogue is anticipated.

Sales are encouraged. The DAA handles all sales and collects a 25% commission on all artwork sold as a result of this exhibition. All artwork for sale must be priced by the artist and so stated in the online entry. Please be sure to include the 25% commission for the DAA in your price. The Georgia sales tax will be added at the point of sale.

Submitting an entry form to this exhibition through Call for Entry ( constitutes an agreement on the part of the artist with all conditions set forth in this prospectus. No work accepted for the exhibition may be withdrawn before the close of the exhibition. After acceptance, the artist cannot substitute another work for the one accepted or raise the sales price.                                                                       
The Decatur Arts Alliance reserves the right to refuse to install any work that, upon arrival at the Library, differs markedly from the images submitted or that does not, for any reason, meet the exhibition’s standards of excellence.                                                    

By submitting images of your work, you give permission to the Decatur Arts Alliance to use the images for publicity in the organization’s websites, digital publications, press releases, and an online catalogue of the exhibition.

All reasonable precautions will be taken to ensure protection of submitted work upon receipt. Work will be insured for the duration of the exhibition. No liability can be assumed by the DAA during storage or by sponsors or personnel connected to the exhibition for damage incurred or loss of work while in transit. Artists are advised to arrange their own shipping insurance.

Artists are invited to enter original or limited edition original or altered books. Participating items will be selected from submitted entries by a panel of three jurors on the basis of creative excellence and quality of execution. All works must be the work of the entering artist. Collaborative projects are eligible, and names of all participating artists should be included in the statement or description of the work.

All entries will be submitted digitally through (CaFÉ)

• If you have not registered previously with CaFÉ, setting up your portfolio is free of charge. There is a $30.00 charge for entering up to three artworks in this exhibition, with up to five images per work. Participants may enter up to three pieces for one fee. The first entry will be paid by credit card, and entrants will use a coupon for (optional) second and third entries that are included in the entry fee. Directions for this process are included in the text of the entry forms.                  

• CaFÉ requires that all images conform to a specific format. The DAA encourages all entrants to review the instructions and tutorials for formatting images and entering before beginning the actual entry process.                 

• Entries will be active on the CaFÉ website April 19–June 4, 2021, and all entries must be completed by midnight MST on June 4.

• Instructions for submitting entries to The Book as Art can be accessed through the CaFÉ home page ( in the scrolling listings under CaFÉ Listings, as well as through this Call for Entries. Please follow directions carefully. The Call will be active on April 19, 2021.

• For technical assistance with your entry, please see, or contact

• For questions about exhibition guidelines, please contact

Please retain a copy of the information you provide on the entry form.

• Notification of acceptance will be made via email no later than Friday, July 9, 2021.

Submissions will include the following:

• Contact information including mailing address, telephone number, email address, and website address (if applicable)

• Title of each work submitted and year the work was completed

• Brief statement about the work. This may include descriptive material. Limit to 75 words.

• Up to five images of each work submitted for jurying. The five images may include one video. If the work is in standard book format it must include an image of the book closed and one of the book opened. If applicable, it should include an image of how the work is presented. Other detailed images are optional, but all submitted images must be formatted to the specifications outlined on the CaFÉ website. ( *

*By submitting images of your work, you give permission to the Decatur Arts Alliance to use the images for publicity in the organizations’ websites, digital publications, press releases, DAA publications (both print and electronic), and an online catalogue of the exhibition.

• Information on size of the edition (i.e., whether this is a one-of-a-kind piece or one of a limited edition)

• Image list titled to correspond to the portfolio images submitted. Please include full photography credits as well as title, dimensions, and description of each work.

• Presentation/installation requirements for the work submitted, including any special fixtures required.

Notification of acceptance will be made by email only, to the email address provided on the application, no later than July 9, 2021. Instructions for shipment and retrieval of artwork will be included. Applicants not chosen will also be notified. No phone calls, please.  Images of accepted work will be retained by the DAA for archival purposes. The exhibition will hang from August 13 through October 1, 2021, in the Gallery of the Decatur Branch of the DeKalb County Public Library, Decatur, Georgia.

The organizers:
Decatur Arts Alliance (DAA) is a nonprofit partnership of artists, business owners, residents and government dedicated to supporting and enhancing the arts in the City of Decatur. Founded in 1989, the Alliance sponsors the annual Decatur Arts Festival, is a founding sponsor of the AJC Decatur Book Festival, and in 2021 continues the success of The Book as Art that began as an event of the book festival. The DAA provides a collaborative environment to coordinate the interests of artists, gallery owners, theater groups, dance groups and performance venues within the city; and helps make Decatur home to a strong arts community. The Decatur Arts Alliance is supported by membership, along with proceeds from the Decatur Arts Festival and the Decatur Wine Festival. To contact the Decatur Arts Alliance call 404-371-9583, email, or visit

The Decatur Branch of the DeKalb County Public Library and the Georgia Center for the Book are located at 215 Sycamore Street, Decatur, Georgia 30030. For information, visit, and, or call 404.370.3070.

The Place:
The City of Decatur, Georgia is located just east of and adjacent to the city of Atlanta’s intown communities and near the metro area suburbs. With more than 200 shops and restaurants in commercial districts around the Square and in historic Oakhurst Village, Decatur is a popular shopping, dining, entertainment, and arts destination. Twenty-four thousand residents live in Decatur’s quiet, tree-lined neighborhoods and downtown condominiums, and as the DeKalb County seat, this thriving commercial community is the epicenter of county business.