The Charleston Chronicle
With more than $140,000 up for grabs in prize money this year, ArtFields (Lake City, South Carolina’s nine-day art exhibition and competition) is officially accepting submissions in all media from artists who live in its 12 participating Southern states. Submissions will be accepted through November 5, 2018, accepted artists will be notified in December, and winners will be announced at the close of ArtFields, set for April 26 – May 4, 2019.
ArtFields started in 2013 with a simple goal: honor Southeastern artists with nearly two weeks worth of celebration and competition in the heart of Lake City – a small, once agrarian South Carolina town. To date, ArtFields has awarded nearly $700,000 in prize money, helped launch the careers of artists, and ultimately led to Lake City’s transformation into a burgeoning arts mecca.
Lake City native and philanthropist Darla Moore led the charge in creating the event, which is coordinated by a small and mighty team, and staffed by nearly 200 local volunteers. ArtFields devotes extensive resources to recruit artists and draw audiences from all participating states. The entire town of Lake City transforms into a gallery for up to 400 pieces of art, exhibiting artwork in professional gallery spaces and in private shops, restaurants, and other locales. Among ArtFields’ roughly 20,000 yearly attendees are gallery owners and museum curators and directors, arts educators, art critics and writers, students, locals, and those inspired by Lake City’s impressive display of Southern art. Most ArtFields events are free and open to the public.
Since its founding, ArtFields has contributed to Lake City’s growth into a year-round arts destination. On any given day, a Lake City visitor can admire artwork in the town’s two galleries, Jones-Carter and TRAX Visual Arts Center (opened in May 2018). Public art, murals, and sculptures are strewn throughout town. Due to the economic impact of ArtFields, there is a resurgence of local restaurants, business, and creative ventures bringing their storefronts back to life downtown. Even young professionals are following suit.
PRIZES AND QUICK FACTS
Submissions Timeline: September 1st – November 5th
Prizes at stake:
- Top Prize – $50,000
- Second Place- $25,000
- People’s Choice 2D – $12,500
- People’s Choice 3D – $12,500
- Merit Awards- $2,000 (10 Awards)
- Category Awards- $1,500 (Digital/New Media & Film, Drawing, Installation & Performance, Mixed Media, Painting, Photography, Printmaking, Sculpture & Objects, Textile)
- State Awards – $1,000 (12 awards, one per state)
This article originally appeared in the Charleston Chronicle.