Tag Archives: entry

Juried Shows

I see a lot of questions regarding juried art exhibitions- to enter or not to enter, and what to enter, and which ones to enter…  I thought I’d give my two cents on the issue.  Personally, I like them and think they can be a great opportunity, as long as you do your homework.

Be choosey.  If it’s a show in the middle of nowhere and juried by someone you’ve never heard of, pass it up.  Focus your efforts on the shows that matter most to you.

That said, if you are just starting out and need to build up some exhibition experience, it may be worthwhile as long as you are spending little to nothing on entry fees or shipping.

Where is the exhibit being held?  Look for a good venue, perhaps a space you’ve been interested in showing or maybe it’s a particular city of interest.

Who is the juror?  Is it someone you’ve been wanting to meet or you admire their work?

What are the fees?  Some juried shows have outrageous fees or some have high fees and require a high commission on top of that.  Look for those that strike a balance between fees and commission rates, if there is one.

Is the work insured?  If the venue does not automatically insure the work, you probably shouldn’t enter.  Good venues have insurance.  It’s just good business.

Shipping?  This will kill it for some people, but if you want to show your work, you’re going to have to pay shipping.  Find the safest, most economical way to ship your work.  This will take some research and will be different for everyone depending on how you pack it and what you pack, your location, and the shipping carrier, but once you determine this, you can use that info for all other aspects of your art business.

Stay away from vanity galleries.  I can’t stress this one enough.  Some vanity galleries hold “competitions” and will look for a way to sucker you in to paying them thousands of dollars for your own solo exhibition.  If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.  Focus on galleries and venues with solid reputations- yes, this means it will be harder to get in and the competition will be fierce, but they are legit.

Presentation is everything.  Make sure you follow all directions, dot your i’s and cross your t’s.  Submit your best work, make sure that if there is more than one entry, all works are consistent in style, technique, and content.  Remember, the juror is seeing this out of context- they don’t know the background behind the art.  What you are submitting needs to make sense to someone just getting a small peek inside your world.

Follow up.  If you get into a show or better yet, win an award, be sure to send out press releases to the local media.  There certainly isn’t enough art in the news, so take the opportunity to get your work featured.



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Artists: Scam Alert!

"The United States of Consumerism" by Amy Guidry; Copyright Amy Guidry 2009

I’m always on the lookout for opportunities to further my art career.  Unfortunately, there are some losers out there who are looking to take advantage of that.  I did a little research online concerning an opportunity I came across that sounded too good to be true.  Apparently that’s because it is.  ArtistGrants.org is promoting their Biennial Competition with a $10K first place award- yes, 10,000 dollars.  Aside from the fantastic prize money, I had to wonder about this since I’d never even heard of them before.  I’ve heard of many artist grants organizations, but never this one.  So I kept an eye on their site…  interestingly enough, I discovered that their entry fee kept changing (increasing, of course) over the past couple of months.  And the deadline has been extended three times so far (at least since I’ve discovered this “competition”).  And who the hell are the jurors?   

Well, further investigation has dug up some more interesting tidbits…  According to Art Opportunities Monthly, ArtistGrants.org tried to get their Biennial listed in their classifieds.  Turns out AOM discovered their domain had been registered for a matter of days before they were listing their competition. AOM also states that the address provided to them for the listing “was a private home which had been bought for well over the asking price just a short time ago (arousing a newspaper’s suspicions that a kickback and finagling with mortgage money was involved). And now, the house just appeared on the market as a HUD foreclosure, meaning that the extra money the buyers had borrowed will not be paid back.”

In addition, AOM also asked about their organization, judging, funding, etc. and never received a response.  I found the same to be true for others’ attempts to contact ArtistGrants.org.  So, after finding out all of this, I am steering clear of this “opportunity” and passing on this information to everyone in the blogosphere!  Just goes to show that unless you are already familiar with an organization, you should always look into them before entering or sending them money.  Many artist listings sites have a disclaimer that they are not responsible if it turns out a listing is a scam and that they do not do background checks, so to speak.  So be sure to do your homework!