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What is a Juried Show??

The deadline for our 5th Annual National Juried Photography Show (presented by First Federal Bank & Trust) is fast approaching: Sunday, January 5th at 11:45pm is your last chance to enter those great photos! The juror this year is Tim Newton, the Publisher at Western Art & Architecture Magazine. Find out more at

With all the buzz around this upcoming Juried Show, we've gotten some questions about what a Juried Art Show actually is, and we're here to help!


At SAGE, our goals are to offer an opportunity for artists to show their artwork competitively with other artists. We host open calls, which mean that our Juried Shows are open to anyone in the United States, regardless of their Membership status at SAGE. (Members do receive a perk: their entry fees are significantly less than Non-Members)! We have found that some artists who participate as Non-Members will decide to join the Artist Guild after participating in the show. For artists who are just "starting out" in their art journey, participating in a Juried Show can be a good confidence booster and opportunity for them to network with more "seasoned" artists.

Woman stands smiling next to her pastel painting of a hillside. She is holding a first place ribbon.
Dianne Wyatt, 1st Place Winner in the 9th Annual Nat'l Juried Show, 2019

Essentially, a Juried Art Show is a competition where artists and photographers can submit their artwork/photography to a judge, juror, or sometimes panel of jurors to see if this judge/juror finds their work "worthy" of being included in the final exhibition. Most Juried Art Shows give cash prizes to a select number of finalists; sometimes physical prizes (like art supplies or gift cards) are also offered.

Here is a basic outline of how a Juried Art Show process look at SAGE (currently):

- SAGE publishes a prospectus (a document that outlines everything you need to know about the specific show) with the official Call for Art on the SAGE website

- Artists/Photographers have until a certain deadline to get all their entries and entry payments submitted

- After the deadline, SAGE sends all submitted images (via a private file-sharing system such as Google Drive or Dropbox) to the juror(s). The jurors have no idea who created which artwork, and are only given the artwork titles and dimensions. This is called a blind judging.

- The juror has around two weeks to narrow all the entries down to about 30 - 35 pieces that will be included in the actual art exhibition at SAGE. This is often a very tough decision, as sometimes they have to narrow down 100-300 or more artworks down to just 35!

- Artists that have work selected are notified, and then have 3-4 weeks to get their artwork to SAGE, whether by hand-delivering or by shipping the art.

- SAGE staff "places" (decides which artworks look best next to each other in the gallery) the artwork into the gallery space and gets everything ready for the show to go on view to the public.

-The show opens! The public is invited to browse the exhibition. SAGE hosts a People's Choice prize, which is voted on by visitors. Whichever photo gets the most votes wins a prize (sometimes in the form of cash, sometimes in the form of a physical prize or gift card donated by a show sponsor). This prize is sometimes announced at the Awards Reception, and is sometimes announced later on at the end of the show.

- One or two days before the Awards Reception, the juror will come in person to judge the prize-winning finalists. This judging is also done blindly, except in extenuating circumstances. The juror chooses a Best of Show, a 1st Place Winner, 2nd Place Winner, and 3rd Place Winner.

A Festive crowd of people mingle and look at art in a gallery. Several pedestals with sculptures are in the middle of the room; paintings and photos are on the wall.
Awards Reception for the 9th Annual Nat'l Juried Show, 2019

- The public (and all artists who

entered and placed in the show) are invited to attend the Awards Reception, where the juror will make a presentation and award the ribbons and prizes to the winners.

At SAGE, our entry process has changed over the years as we've grown in the Sheridan community and also spread our reach regionally and nationally. For the past two Juried Art Shows we've hosted, we have used an online form built directly on our website. This was a big step forward from the paper forms we used to use, and allowed us to advertise nationally. Our 9th Annual National Juried Show featured artists from 13 states! We are currently exploring even easier ways for artists to enter Juried Shows at SAGE.

Some Juried Shows are specific and have calls for art that include specific subject matter, or hope to reach a certain demographic of artists (i.e. Womxn Artists, Urban Landscapes, Abstract Art, etc.). While SAGE sometimes has an overall theme for the Juried Shows, this is meant to bring together a cohesive show and not to establish a subject matter criterion for which to judge work. Usually, our jurors are looking at more technical aspects and skill when choosing work, and may not take the theme into much consideration at all.

A helpful link- "The Do's and Don'ts of Submitting to a Juried Art Show":


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