Not-for-profit organization seeks creativity for tile project

AUBURN -- The term "public art" may have never been so literal.

Patrons of the Independence Day Celebration in Auburn will be asked to unleash their inner artisan during the July 2 and 3 festival for a permanent installation near downtown.

Georgia Piedmont Arts Center officials will be selling ceramic tiles ($2 each or three for $5) for folks to paint that will be sealed and combined as part of a tile mural in the children's park.

"You might paint a picture, write a poem, be totally abstract, send a secret message, or simply sign your name or initials -- the sky's the limit," said Kathleen Gill, GPAC president. "Think of having your own personal work of art as an integral part of a larger, permanent installation."

Officials hope to complete enough tiles to create a 30-square foot mural, but those dimensions could expand with greater participation, Gill said.

Tiles and paint -- not to mention a shaded painting area -- will be available during the festival at the GPAC booth. Once tiles are completed and sealed, GPAC officials will design the mural and work with the city for installation, Gill said.

"The finished project will be around for a very long time for all to enjoy," she said.

The not-for-profit center recently relocated from Winder to a historic house in downtown Auburn. Its mission is to "cultivate, facilitate and promote a community in which all art forms can thrive cooperatively," according to the center's website.

Officials declared their inaugural gallery show at the art cottage -- the winter-themed "Shades of White" -- a success earlier this year.

For more information, call the Georgia Piedmont Arts Center at 404-202-3044 or visit www.georgiapiedmontartscenter.com.