The annual Art & Words show takes place every Fall around September. Submissions for art and written work are open from March 1st to March 30th of every year. You do not have to be located in Texas or able to attend to show in order to submit, though preference is given to local visual artists. We accept unpublished or previously published work. Written works submitted will not be published online or in print, only displayed and read aloud at the show, so submitting to this project should not harm your chances of publishing the work elsewhere.
Each visual artist should send up to three .jpgs of visual work. Each writer should submit up to three .rtfs or .docs of written work (up to 800 words for each work of fiction, poetry, or nonfiction accepted, all genres from the realistic to the fantastic) in standard manuscript format. Please send a bio or cover letter with your submission mentioning any publications, degrees, or memberships in critique groups/writers’ or artists’ organizations. In a show like this, where the second work will be created specifically for the show, it’s important that I have a good idea of the general quality of your work in addition to the quality of the story/poem/essay/visual art work submitted. Therefore, submitters who submit three pieces or can demonstrate their overall ability through publications will have a better chance at being selected. (Previously unpublished writers who send three pieces have an equal chance of being accepted as published writers.)
When you are ready to submit, visit http://artwords.submittable.com/submit.
In 2012 I curated the first Art & Words collaborative show; 2016 will be the fifth annual Art & Words Show. For these shows, I accept ten-twelve visual pieces of art and ten-twelve written pieces (poetry, flash fiction, and flash nonfiction). Each writer whose work I chose then picks, from the visual submissions, one piece of visual art on to use as inspiration to compose a new written work. Each visual artist then chooses one of the written pieces to use as inspiration for a second visual work. This silent collaboration produces about forty-four incredible, original works of art and words, which are displayed at Art on the Boulevard in Fort Worth, Texas, for one week. An opening reception is held the first night of the show.
At the show’s opening, I host the reading of the written pieces, and a live jazz band performs (in the first and third years, the band performed compositions based on poems and stories as well as original compositions by musicians Jake Dester and Peter Brewer).
For a few examples of visual art that was on display last year, please check out the Art on the Boulevard website.
Art & Words is not a publication, and unfortunately I am unable to offer payment for the display of works both visual and written. For written works, the work submitted will not be published either online or in print; I do not acquire any rights to work, except the one time right to display a single broadside of the story/poem/essay for the week of the show. The intent of Art & Words is to encourage collaboration and inspiration; thus, participation should be considered more an inspirational tool. You may absolutely submit work used in the show to other venues either before, during, or after the show.
You do have the option of allowing us to include your work in a PDF of the show which is sent out only to the creative participants in Art & Words (as many of the participants are from out of state and are unable to attend, the PDF allows them to experience the show in which their work was displayed). This is entirely optional.
Visual art work included in Art & Words is treated much the same as at a regular gallery; you have the option of allowing us permission to include the art work in promotional materials and on the Art on the Boulevard website, and of selling the work. Due to practical concerns, we limit the number of non-local visual artists accepted; artists will be expected to arrange for drop-off and pick-up of their work at Art on the Boulevard. Art on the Boulevard’s commission on visual art sold is 30%.
Several of the written works from the shows were reprinted from magazines or went on to be published in magazines, some of which you can read for free, linked below:
“Future Fragments, Six Seconds Long” by Alex Shvartsman in Diabolical Plots
“O What Freedom, This Great Steel Cage” by Shane Halbach in Analog
“Keith Crust’s Lucky Number” by Alisa Alering in Flash Fiction Online
“Drinking Grandma’s Tea” by Julie C. Day in Bartleby Snopes
“The Sweet Life” by Aidan Doyle in Everyday Fiction
“Copy Machine” by Shane Halbach in Flash Fiction Online
“Fox Watches, Refusing to Smile” by Katharyn Howd Machan in Spoon River Review
“The Rumination on What Isn’t” by Alex Shvartsman in Nature
“The Scene” by Janet St. John in Passages North, reprinted on her website
“Crazy” by Nan Byrne in Seattle Review
“Hansel Lost” by Joseph Stanton in Spoon River Poetry Review
“A Kingdom for a Horse” by Aidan Doyle in Penumbra
“The Last Bombardment” by Kenneth Schneyer in Pseudopod
“Selecting” by John M. Shade in Daily Science Fiction
“Six Drabbles of Separation” by Kenneth Schneyer in audio format on The Drabblecast
“The Machine” by Sean Robinson in Daily Science Fiction
“Crab Feast” by Cynthia Ray in Dark Bits
“The Unmoveable Sky” by Deborah Walker in Poe Little Thing, reprinted in After Ever After and The Toasted Cake
“The Faces Between Us” by Julie C. Day in Interzone
“A Meal” by Anca Szilagyi in The Cafe Irreal
“Crash Landing” by Julie C. Day in Flashquake
“Infinitite, 2 AM” by Sarah Kate Moore in Pacifica Literary Review
“Totality” by Tony Pisculli in Daily Science Fiction
“Paradigm Shift” by Julie C. Day in Electric Velocipede