Art Rocks Athens returns! Film, photography, and, of course, music will be the focus this year, with a continuing retrospective, primarily 1975-1985, of the art and artists who made the music that made Athens, GA famous. Artist Sandra-Lee Phipps, SCAD Atlanta professor and R.E.M. colleague, is curating a major photo show, “I’ll Be Your Mirror,” in ARA’s new two-story pop-up gallery, that will feature large photo installations by Michael Stipe and Jeremy Ayers, as well as some newly unearthed images of the band, along with a fantastic array of photos of the early Athens scene, by dozens of photographers, including many known to R.E.M. fans, such as Laura Levine. In addition, ARA has three major film events — Films of Stan Brakhage, experimental pioneer, and two Art Rocks Reels openings that feature Super 8 and 16 mm works by Betty Alice Fowler, Keith Bennett, Cindy Wilson (B-52’s), Michael Lachowski (Pylon), Spencer Thornton, James Herbert, who made several R.E.M. videos, and many, many others. ARA will also present two nights of great music, with Glenn Phillips and Cindy Wilson headlining Friday, and Fred Schneider, headlining Saturday, in his first performance of solo material since 1996. That and more events, Aug. 27-30, and continuing through September. Check out artrocksathens.com for more information.