2023 Cotton District Arts Festival Juried Arts Exhibition

September 18, 2023


Visual Arts Center Gallery

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Cotton District Arts Festival Poster

The MSU Department of Art Galleries and the Starkville Area Arts Council co-organize this annual juried exhibition as part of the programming for the Cotton District Arts Festival (CDAF).

The Cotton District Arts Festival Juried Arts Exhibition features examples of painting, drawing, ceramics, printmaking, fiber art, graphic design, sculpture and photography by artists living and working in the Southeast. All artists in the exhibition submit their works for consideration. The final pieces and awards in the exhibit are selected by invited jurors. From the accepted pieces, prizes are awarded in several categories. This year, two guest jurors will review the works: Lawson King and Lily Trest.

The CDAF Juried Arts Exhibit will be on display in the Visual Arts Center Gallery, 808 University Drive, September 18 through October 20, 2023. The Visual Arts Center Gallery is open for special hours 9:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. on September 23, the day of the Cotton District Arts Festival in Starkville. During regular hours, the gallery is open to the public Monday through Friday, 1:00 p.m. until 6:00 p.m. and Saturday, 1:00 p.m. until 4:00 p.m. Entrance to the gallery is free. 

About the Jurors:

Lawson King is an artist and educator from Indianola, MS. He works primarily in sculpture and painting, creating artwork for public places - because art is for everyone. Lawson is an alum of the Mississippi School for Mathematics and Science in Columbus, MS. He earned a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from the University of Mississippi then went on to study Sculpture at Delta State University. After receiving his Bachelor of Fine Arts, Lawson spent several years apprenticing with Detroit sculptor Ray Katz. In 2020, he received the highly competitive Artist Fellowship Award from the Mississippi Arts Commission. Lawson is currently teaching Sculpture at Delta State University - continuing to create, exhibit, and promote public art.

Lily Trest is the Co-Owner and Manager at Caron Gallery South in Laurel, MS. Lily grew up just outside of Laurel, MS, and graduated from Mississippi State University with a degree in Science. She married her husband, artist Adam Trest, which began her love and appreciation for art and artists. She has spent over ten years in the creative industry, helping growing art businesses. Past roles include managing the Adam Trest store in Downtown Laurel and teaching at Central Creativity. Currently, as co-owner and manager at Caron Gallery South, Lily enjoys selling art for Mississippi artists and connecting with customers. She is passionate about helping others achieve success in what they are passionate about in a way that represents their unique style.


To see works in the 2022 exhibit visit the Juried Arts Competition online gallery.

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