ArtsWorcester invites you to submit proposals for solo and group exhibitions for our 2017-2018 gallery season and corporate art program. We also seek performance art for our galleries. Proposals are evaluated first by a panel of art experts, and then by a second ad hoc committee.  The due date is Wednesday, March 29, 2017.

New and traditional media, fine craft, and site-specific installations are all welcome. Proposals should be specific in regard to presentation and installation plans. Selected artists may work with our professional installer.

As part of this year’s call for exhibits, we seek submissions specific to the Present Tense Prize, awarded to an artist whose work exemplifies new practices, artistic risk-taking, and excellence in execution. The Present Tense Prize winner receives an award of $1,000 and a solo exhibit on one floor of the Aurora Gallery, and will give an artist talk. You may submit separate proposals for a gallery exhibit and for the Present Tense Prize.

For the call and the prize:

  • Current ArtsWorcester membership is required for all artists. There is no geographic restriction on membership, but artists (or their proxy) must deliver and collect artwork.
  • No elevator is available for the lower level gallery, and no installation may engage the ceilings.
  • One forty-inch video monitor is available for artist use.
  • Artists earn 60% on sales made through our galleries.
  • All submissions must be made electronically here.
  • The submission due date is midnight on Wednesday, March 29, 2017.
  • We will notify you of your status by the end of June, 2017.

A submission requires:

  • 5 images of works (maximum of 2 MB, or 300 dpi at 100% size; video and performance artists should include 5 thirty-second pieces)
  • Group proposals may submit up to ten images total.
  • Exhibit proposal, not to exceed 250 words, including the concept behind the exhibit, the number of works in it, and the status of its completion.
  • Artist statement, not to exceed 200 words.
  • Curriculum vitae or resume.

Artists seeking a solo exhibition may also include:

  • 2 images of details of two-dimensional work.
  • An additional three images of three-dimensional works from different angles.

ArtsWorcester staff and committee members will hold an information session about the proposal process on Saturday, February 11, between 12:00 and 1:00 PM. Bring us your questions and ideas, and get some feedback on how to make the most effective proposal possible.

Please contact us with any and all questions, and good luck.

Since 1985, the ArtsWorcester Biennial has exhibited the region’s best visual art, with an extraordinary range of works by leading and emerging artists. The juror of this year’s Biennial is Samantha Cataldo, Contemporary Arts Curator at the Currier Museum of Art. The Biennial opens on May 5, and runs through June 2, 2017.

In addition to a $1,000 cash prize, this year’s winner of the Sally R. Bishop Prize for Best In Show will have an installation in the galleries at the Worcester Art Museum in the 2017-18 season, with work selected by one staff member from the museum and the Executive Director of ArtsWorcester in concert with the artist. Additional cash awards, given at the discretion of the juror, are supported by Hoche-Scofield Prize and Scholarship Fund of the Worcester Art Museum. Additionally, we’re delighted to announce that the Members Council of the Worcester Art Museum is offering complimentary, one-year individual memberships to the museum to the first 160 artists submitting work to the Biennial.

The submission deadline for the Biennial is March 19, 2017, and all submissions must be made online through our website. Submission fees may be paid online or by mailing a check to ArtsWorcester by the submission deadline. You will need to submit each artwork in a separate upload. A $15 fee applies to each work submitted, with a maximum of three works per artist.  ArtsWorcester cannot accept or return work by shipment. You will be notified of the status of your work by April 4.

Biennial Submissions

Sixteenth ArtsWorcester Biennial Exhibition image courtesy of Tim Johnson.

Tim-Johnson-Preparator-490x450Our annual series of Artist Business Skills Workshops provide artists with the basic skills and knowledge they need to advance their professional careers. Previous topics have included workshops on What to Expect from a Portfolio Review
with artist and professor Greer Muldowney, Executive Director and Curator of the Griffin Museum of Photography Paula Tognarelli, and Mary M. Tinti is the Curator at the Fitchburg Art Museum; writing artist statements with Debbie Hagan, Editor of Art New England; photographing your artwork with Stephen DiRado; presenting works on paper, by Tim Johnson; intellectual property with Greg Kanaan; and pricing your artwork and accounting for artists with Anna Koon, founder of The Focusing Series for artists.

Framing 101 presentation by Amanda Kidd Schall

May 2017

Details will follow shortly.


Thank you to the Melvin S. Cutler Charitable Foundation for supporting the Artist Business Skills Workshops.

Material Needs Grants, funded by an anonymous donor, support the expenses of supplies and materials for the creation of new art in Worcester County. With this gift, we are able to distribute grants to artists between $500 and $1,500. We generally exhibit the work produced in the following exhibition season (awards made in early spring of 2017 will fund the works shown in the fall of 2018).


To apply for a Material Needs Grant, you must reside in Worcester County and have been a member of ArtsWorcester for one calendar year prior to application, and not have received one in the past three years. Applications are currently under review.

2016 Material Needs Grant Exhibition images courtesy of Tim Johnson.

Above: exhibition image of artwork (archival inkjet prints, 40×50 in.) by Eric Nichols.

Left: exhibition image of Metro,  steel, paint, and blue stone, 4×4 ft. base, by Phillip Marshall. Background artworks include paintings by Clifton Hunt and photographs by Zia Ayub.