Artzilla - The Word with
Heather René Dunaway

It’s crazy to think about how I was in Artzilla last year. Last year feels like forever ago now. I remember when I was first asked to participate… 2021 I had fully committed to being more involved in my local arts community by utilizing the “yes man” method (if you haven’t seen that Jim Carey movie, I 10/10 recommend). It magically worked and when I was hit with, “Hey, would you be interested in doing Artzilla?” I was high-fiving all the angels, so to speak.


I stop by Artzilla every year; mostly to fan girl over Jacki Mayo Van Dyke and see her work her magic. I have a green Artzilla screen printed t-shirt my ex-boyfriend’s mom bought me in 2011 that I still keep tucked away in my dresser. So to be asked to participate was a big deal for me and I am so grateful to have had the experience.


I was actually kind of nervous about being there. Sometimes you get that lil’ imposter syndrome nagging at you. Plus, I really create my work under the shadows of night in my disaster zone of a home studio with gallons of sweet tea and crunchy, salty snacks. I wasn’t sure I could manage a day-into-night art spree without binging some period piece Netflix series in the background. Somehow it all worked out. Being around artists making art and sipping on virgin pina coladas from the Global Food Village was a huge perk to say the least. And, y’all, Jacki was my art neighbor. 

Heather Rene Dunaway sipping a virgin pina colada at Artzilla 10 in 2021
Heather René Dunaway taking a much needed virgin pina colada at her table at Artzilla 10

I really wanted my piece to reflect Augusta. I chose to do Laurence Fishburne as Morpheus holding the ultimate Augusta choice. A Copan Burrito from Nacho Mama’s and a PBR-BQ from Knuckle Sandwiches. Laurence Fishburne is from Augusta. I didn’t know that until I read it on one of Farmhaus Burger’s table topper. The title? Glad you asked. It’s “You take the PBR-BQ… the story ends, you wake up with a hang over and believe whatever you want to believe. You take the Copan… you stay in the bathroom, and I show you how deep the toilet bowl goes.” I really love Nacho Mamas and Knuckles. They are my go-to going-downtown-gotta-eat-good-food places. The glasses I was able to do with the help of Jacki. They’re mirrors. So, you are Neo in this situation and the choice is yours. Someone who really loved the Matrix series bought it. I’m glad it’s being appreciated by someone who has taste. (See what I did there?)

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"You take the PBR-BQ... the story ends, you wake up with a hang over and believe whatever you want to believe. You take the Copan... you stay in the bathroom, and I show you how deep the toilet bowl goes." Mixed Media on Canvas by Heather Rene Dunaway

What’s happening with Artzilla 11?


I unfortunately wont be there. I’ll be hustling and bustling managing the Volunteer check-in booth. If you wanna join me or volunteer somewhere cooler like the beer tent, please do! I need like 200 more volunteers for the whole festival. Eek! 


You can fill out the form here. 


You can support the talented artists in Artzilla 11 by visiting their hub! They’ll be in front of the new Tip Top Taps location (old Book Tavern) in the JB Whites Building’s patio Featured artists include: Blain Prescott, Jacki Mayo Van Dyke, Katie Scarborough, Brian StewART, Carrie Brooks, Alex Foltz, Emily Mims, Colleen Beyer Stewart, and more! I’m really excited to see what kind of fun creations come out of this year’s artists. It’s amazing to see what artists can do when they come together to make something special.


They’ll be auctioning off their work on First Friday, October 7th! Keep your eyes peeled for that announcement of when and where!


For more information on what other arts happenings are going to be popping off at this year’s festival, you can click here.

Artzilla E-flyer