Middletown Arts Center holding annual art competition: What to know

Middletown Arts Center has suspending classes, events and public access thru April 23. The Governor of Ohio ordered all schools to be closed for three weeks to help reduce the spread of coronavirus and many businesses and non-profits are following with similar closings. NICK GRAHAM / STAFF

Credit: Nick Graham

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Middletown Arts Center has suspending classes, events and public access thru April 23. The Governor of Ohio ordered all schools to be closed for three weeks to help reduce the spread of coronavirus and many businesses and non-profits are following with similar closings. NICK GRAHAM / STAFF

Credit: Nick Graham

Credit: Nick Graham

The Middletown Arts Center (MAC) is accepting entries for the 9th Annual “Photography & Digital Art Competition 2020.” The submission deadline is Sept. 10 by 8 p.m.

“This exhibit gives all local photographers, even new photographers who only need a ‘good eye,’ an opportunity to involve themselves in the arts, present their work to the public and compete for awards. And, as the number of photographers grows, the venues to show photographic work are far fewer than those available to other 2D artists, such as oil/acrylic, watercolor, drawing, and pastel artists. MAC has been working to offset this lack of exhibit space, locally,” said Kate Dykes, executive director of Middletown Arts Center.

For details and guidelines on how to enter, go to www.middletownartscenter.com. Entrants will be notified of acceptance on MAC’s website by September 14. The fee to enter each piece is $15.

“It is important in today’s busy world to give artists a venue to exhibit their work. With photography specifically, the fast onset of photographic capabilities of today’s smartphones has given those who want to enjoy photography easy access to creativity. Many art centers are just beginning to understand that the growing numbers of photographers need a place to show their art,” Dykes said.

She also said MAC’s exhibit committee felt it was especially important to include the Digital Artistry category in this exhibit.

“Digital art is a new and upcoming field of art, enjoyed by many artists. However, there are still very few venues that accept this form of artwork, and those who create it are enthusiastic about it, and happy to find an accepting venue for their pieces,” said Dykes.

Professional and amateur photographers 16 years of age or older are eligible to submit digital photographs, film photographs or other digital works of art via the Middletown Arts Center website.

“We’ve also opened our minimum age for entry to 16 this year because our judges noted the phenomenal photography submitted in our teen Tomorrow’s Artist Today exhibition last winter, and we want to foster those talents,” said Dykes.

Once entries are received by Middletown Arts Center, the judges will determine which works will be displayed in the show. Those selected for exhibition will also be considered for prizes in the competition.

Awards and prizes will be announced on MAC’s website and social media platforms and ribbons will be placed on the winning pieces. Awards include “Best of Show,” “First Place,” “Second Place,” “Third Place” and “Honorable Mention.” Top awards include cash prizes that range from $200 to $75.

“MAC encourages all photographers, professionals, amateurs, and those newer to the field, to participate in exhibits. Though entering a first show may feel just a bit intimidating, entrants will find the information gained and the energy of participants make the exhibition an exciting adventure. And it is also just a fun affair,” said Dykes.

The Photography & Digital Art Show exhibition at the Middletown Arts Center will open on Thursday, October 8 and run through Thursday, November 5. The show is free and open to the public for viewing during Middletown Arts Center’s regular building hours. This exhibit is sponsored by John and Pat Dupps.

“This exhibition is dependably a dynamic showcase of work. There is something for everyone to enjoy. We encourage people to view the pieces in person, as that adds an extra layer of nuance to understanding each piece,” Dykes said.

Social distancing and safety protocols will be in place. For more information about Middletown Arts Center and its programs, including photography classes and workshops, visit www.middletownartscenter.com or call (513) 424-2417.

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