Camille Decker to Represent Delaware in 2020 Poetry Out Loud National Finals
Front Row (l to r): Paul Weagraff, Director, Division of the Arts; First Lady Tracey Quillen Carney; Charmaine Pasicolan; Rebecca Wisniewski; Natalia Castillo Vazquez; Julie Griswold; Penn Smith; Estelle Hegenbarth; Sarah Zhu; Camille Decker Back Row (l to r): Shalom Ighodaro; Sam McGarvey; Josh-Samuel Ikechi-Konkwo; Alex Free; Ian Hayes; Daniel Patrick Johnson; Reuben Everhart; J. Mack Wathen, Chair, Delaware State Arts Council Joe del Tufo, Moonloop Photography — at Smyrna Opera House. All Photos: Joe del Tufo, Moonloop Photography
March for the Arts
The Delaware Arts Alliance (DAA) will hold the 5th Annual Delaware Arts Advocacy Day at Legislative Hall in Dover on March 17. Arts advocates from across the state will meet with legislators to discuss issues impacting the arts and arts education. Advocates and legislators will discuss how the arts improve quality of life and address the social, economic, and educational needs of communities. In recognition of March for the Arts, arts educators will be delivering art work and messages to legislators from students in their districts. DAA invites you to attend and share how you are making a difference in your community through the arts.
From the Director
The Division of the Arts is proud to support nearly 60 arts organizations each year with funding dedicated to supporting arts programming serving Delawareans. This year, with an increase in funding from the General Assembly, the Division was able to issue a challenge to those arts organizations. These additional funds leveraged, through a Challenge Grant, more than $1.5 million in additional donations to those organizations from both private and corporate donations. This represented a better than 3-to-1 match. 

In addition to the monetary success, the 55 participating organizations collectively reported nearly 1,000 first-time donors. We were pleased to hear that arts organizations have seen new possibilities in cultivating new donors and reaching new audiences to support the work they do, and to augment the support that the Division is able to provide through its grant programs. 

During this March for the Arts month, we issue a new challenge to arts patrons and participants alike. Get involved if you’re not, and if you are, get someone else involved! Supporting the arts goes far beyond monetary contributions. Just as important is attending programs, exhibitions, and concerts with family and friends. Likewise, there is a multitude of volunteer opportunities across the state for docents, ushers, set designers and builders, board membership, and more. Attendance at events and volunteer participation help strengthen the nonprofit arts sector in a tangible and rewarding way, for both the organization and the donor.
Now Open at Delaware State University
The Delaware State Employee art exhibit is open until March 15; the reception and awards ceremony is Sunday, March 15 at 1 p.m.

You can "like" your favorite(s) on Facebook or vote onsite at the Gallery starting now. A third option is to send your choice(s) by email to  Dana Wise.

The People's Choice winner will be announced at the closing reception and awards ceremony on March 15. Voting closes on March 13.
On the Mezzanine
Not Just a Pretty Face
by Paul Simon
Image: Bearded Man, 2019, soft pastel, 25 x 38 inches
Not Just a Pretty Face, an exhibition of pastel portraits by Paul Simon, will be on view in the Mezzanine Gallery now through March 27, 2020.

Since retiring from a career as a biopharmaceuticals discovery researcher, Simon has devoted himself to creating artwork and volunteering. Always drawn to portraiture, Simon was inspired to create portraits of people he met through his volunteer work for JFS (Jewish Family Services) Village and the Refugee Integration Support Effort (RISE). 

Simon typically works from smartphone snapshots and enjoys the challenge of creating a photographic likeness that reveals something about the person’s character. He creates the large close-up views of faces by layering soft pastels on dark paper. The faces fill or often extend past the borders of the page. “I depict them frankly, without seeking to embellish or smooth the images, indeed, welcoming the eloquence of their “seasoned” visage,” Simon said.
Mezzanine Gallery Application
Visual artists who are interested in being considered for a solo exhibition in the Mezzanine Gallery in 2021, must submit an application by March 15, 2020 . For more information and to access the online application form, visit the Mezzanine Gallery Application page

Please note: Artists who completed an Individual Artist Fellowship application in 2020 and selected "yes" to the Mezzanine Gallery question will automatically be considered by the Gallery Panel and do not need to complete the application.
The Mezzanine Gallery, open weekdays from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., is located in the
Carvel State Office Building, 820 N. French Street, Wilmington. 
Meet the Artist Fellows
Taylor Reid Adams
Established Fellow, Literature: Fiction
Using actual events as both a starting point and a pivot, Taylor Reid Adams loves to delve into other places and times by writing historical fiction. By creating characters that live in other times and places, Adams can “challenge that certainty and force a reader to reimagine what they’ve taken for granted or never really considered.”
Sarah Barnett
Emerging Fellow, Literature: Creative Nonfiction
After retiring from a lifetime in the Washington DC suburbs – working as a teacher, librarian, and lawyer – Sarah Barnett moved to Rehoboth Beach. Professionally she had “tackled writing assignments...but I always longed to explore writing creatively.” So in Delaware, she began to write creative nonfiction and joined the Rehoboth Beach Writers’ Guild. 
Award Winners XX Exhibition
The work of the Fellows will be featured in a group exhibition, Award Winners XX at the Biggs Museum from June 5 to July 23, 2020 with an award ceremony and reception on Wednesday, June 10 at 5 p.m.

Selections from Award Winners will travel to CAMP Rehoboth for the entire month of August and then Cab Calloway School of the Arts from September 4 to October 25.
Biggs Museum of American Art
June 5 to July 23, 2020
Opening Reception: June 5
Award Ceremony: June 10
CAMP Rehoboth
August 1-30, 2020
Opening Reception: August 1
Cab Calloway School of the Arts
September 4 to October 25, 2020
Opening Reception: October 2
Downtown Dover Poetry Weekend - April 3-5, 2020
Mark your calendars: The National League of American Pen Women, Holly Branch chapter, is organizing the Downtown Dover Poetry Weekend from April 3-5, 2020 during National Poetry Month. The poetry-inspired events during the weekend range from kids’ activities to poetry workshops with poets Ned Balbo, Linda Blaskey, and Jane Satterfield. The Delaware Poets Laureate, the Twin Poets, will lead a teen workshop and give a reading on Saturday. Event partners include First Friday Dover, Dover Public Library, House of Coffi, and the Biggs Museum. The program is supported, in part, by grants from Delaware Humanities and the Delaware Division of the Arts. Read more
Featured Opportunities
Dates for 2020 Delaware Seashore Writers Retreat Announced
The 2020 Delaware Seashore Writers Retreat will be held November 12-15, 2020 at the Virden Retreat Center in Lewes. The Division of the Arts is pleased to support this low-cost, multi-day retreat for Delaware writers.

The application process is competitive, and participants will be chosen based on the merit of their writing submissions in an anonymous review process.

More information and the application will be available in the spring. 
Artist Roster Seeks Teaching Artists
The Division’s Artist Roster is a resource for anyone looking for artistic talent in Delaware. You can find visual, literary, and performing artists available to create, exhibit, perform, or present programs in venues across the state and throughout the region. 
We are currently seeking more artists to register or update their profile in the Roster to include “Teaching Artist” under the Arts Services category. School administrators, teachers, and organizers of events and programs regularly seek artists to lead art projects and workshops in a variety of disciplines and media. If you like to help people create, let us know!
Kent County Found for the Arts
The Kent County Fund for the Arts will award about $20,000 in grants in 2020. Applications are now being accepted from schools, clubs, and civic/community organizations for programs that help to foster growth of arts organizations in Kent County, as well as those organizations that support the arts. Learn more
The Division has embarked on a year-long digital advertising campaign to increase reach and engagement on . We remind and recommend that organizations, businesses and individual artists, submit their 2020 events as soon as they are scheduled, and no later than the recommended deadlines below. Submit now
Event Date
March & April
May & June
July & August
September & October
November & December
Submission Deadline
As soon as possible
March 15
May 15
July 15
September 15
Ongoing Division Grant Deadlines
Artist Opportunity: deadline 4/1/2020, for activities happening between 5/15/2020 - 11/15/2020

Artist Residency: rolling deadline, submitted at least 6 weeks prior to start of scheduled residency

Artist Roster : rolling deadline
Arts Access Grants: rolling deadline, submitted at least 6 weeks prior to project start date

TranspARTation Grant: rolling deadline, submitted at least 6 weeks prior to the field trip date
Please note: All applications for grants must be submitted through smARTDE.
The Delaware Division of the Arts is an agency of the State of Delaware. Together with its advisory body, the Delaware State Arts Council, the Division administers grants and programs that support arts programming, educate the public, increase awareness of the arts, and integrate the arts into all facets of Delaware life. Funding for Division programs is provided by annual appropriations from the Delaware General Assembly and grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency. For more information about the Delaware Division of the Arts, visit or call 302-577-8278.