Event Information

Gasparilla Festival of the Arts 2019

Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park
Tampa, Florida (South)

Phone: (813) 876-1747
Event Dates: 3/2/19 - 3/3/19
Application Deadline: 10/3/18 Midnight EST

The application deadline has passed.


Images: 4 (a booth shot is required)

Fee (Administrative Fee (September 1 - October 1) ): $55.00

You can submit up to 3 applications for this show.


Event Summary
The Raymond James Gasparilla Festival of the Arts is recognized as one of the top-rated outdoor fine art festivals in the country. The 49th Annual Festival will be held March 2-3, 2019, in beautiful downtown Tampa. The Festival is presented by Gasparilla Festival of the Arts, Inc. – a non-profit, entirely volunteer-run organization. Each year, over 235 artists are selected through a juried process to exhibit their work for art enthusiasts and vie for $76,500 in award money, including the $15,000 Raymond James Best of Show Award and an additional 38 awards. The Festival is free to the public and attracts an estimated 75,000 visitors.

General Information

Images: 4 (a booth shot is required)

Fee (Application Fee) $45.00 (July 1 – August 31); $55.00 (September 1 - October 1) )

You can submit up to 3 applications for this show.

  • October 1, 2018 (midnight): Deadline for complete applications to be submitted and for payment of the application fee.
  • Mid-October 2018: A panel of four qualified jurors will evaluate all applications (without knowing the artists’ identities) as part of the process for selecting and inviting artists to participate in the Festival.
  • Late-October/Early-November 2018: Invitations will be sent to selected artists.
  • December 1, 2018: Deadline to accept invitation and for payment of the exhibition (booth) fee.
  • January 2019: Information packets will be e-mailed to participating artists.
  • January/Early-February 2019: Opening of the online booth request process. Booth assignments will be made on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • February 28 – March 1, 2019: Artist load-in and setup will occur. Artists will be required to check-in at a designated location prior to setup. Detailed information concerning artist check-in, load-in, setup, and load-out will be provided to participating artists prior to the Festival.
  • March 2-3, 2019: The 49th Annual Raymond James Gasparilla Festival of the Arts will be open to the public from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. on Saturday, and from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Sunday.
  • Each artist must complete an individual online application, submit four images (three media and one booth photo), and pay the application fee by the application deadline.
  • A nonrefundable application fee of $45 must accompany each application. The nonrefundable application fee increases to $55 after August 31, 2018.
  • The artwork shown on the three images must have been produced in the last three years (2016 to present), and the artist must indicate the year for each piece or the application will be marked incomplete. These three images must accurately represent the type of work that will be displayed at the Festival and must be a single category of work.
  • The fourth image must show the artist’s display space (booth) with a representative sample of the work visible. This image is to provide the jurors assurance that the artist has an adequate body of work and should illustrate the scale of work. Applications without a booth display image will be marked incomplete.
  • Artists who received an award from the juror (excludes Collectors Krewe purchase awards) at the 2018 Festival are automatically accepted into the 2019 Festival. These artists must, however, submit an application and pay the application fee by the application deadline.
  • The 2018 Emerging Artist award winner will be automatically accepted into the 2019 Festival provided he or she submits an application and pays the application fee by the application deadline.
  • Artists who received an award at the 2018 Festival (including the 2018 Emerging Artist award winner) are encouraged to submit images of their artwork with their applications for poster and t-shirt design consideration.
  • An artist may apply in multiple medium categories for different bodies of work. A separate application must be submitted (including its own set of images) and a separate application fee must be paid for each category. An artist may not apply multiple times in the same category.
  • A two-person team or partnership collaborating on a single product may qualify as a single exhibitor if this is adequately explained in the application. Each artist’s name must appear on the completed application, and both artists must be present for the entire Festival.
  • The City of Tampa requires proof of auto insurance for all vehicles accessing the Festival site. By submitting your application, you confirm that you will have a valid auto insurance policy for your vehicle for the duration of the Festival, including during load-in, setup, and load-out. If you do not have valid auto insurance, you must notify the Festival and your vehicle will not be allowed to access the Festival site.
A wait list will be developed based on the results of the juried selection process. Wait-listed artists who are selected to participate in the Festival will be notified by email.
A juror of national prominence will jury the Festival on Saturday, March 2, beginning at 9:00 a.m. The Festival juror will determine the recipients of the following awards:
$15,000 Raymond James Financial Best of Show Award
$7,500 Board of Director’s Award
$4,000 Roddy Brownlee Reed Award of Excellence
$3,500 Mayor’s Award
$2,500 President’s Award
$2,000 Friends of the Museum Award
$1,300 Award of Merit (30 awards of $1,300 each)
$1,500 Emerging Artist Award
$1,000 Tampa Bay Regional High School Scholastic Showcase Award (Student)
$500 Tampa Bay Regional High School Scholastic Showcase Award (Student’s School)
An awards ceremony will be held at 6:00 p.m., Saturday, March 2, 2019 at the “Arts
and Drafts” artists’ party. Award ribbons and checks will be presented at Arts and Drafts, but artists must, in any event, personally claim their awards and checks by no later than 4:00 p.m. on Sunday, March 3, or else the award and check will be deemed forfeited.

Please refer to the Festival website for complete rules and regulations at: http://gasparillaarts.com/rules/.

Eligibility and Attendance
Artists participating in the Gasparilla Festival of the Arts (the “Festival”) must be 18 years of age or older as of the first day of the Festival. If a participating artist is required to sign any document prior to his or her 18th birthday, such document must be co-signed by a parent or guardian and ratified by the artist after he or she turns 18 years old.

To be eligible for jury and awards, all work must be original, created by the artist within the 3 years prior to the Festival, signed by the artist and available for sale with the price clearly visible. Any piece of art that has won an award at a Festival is ineligible for awards at any subsequent Festival.
An accepted application is a commitment to participate in the Festival, and refunds will not be issued for cancellations.

All artists, including both artists if accepted as partners, must exhibit and be present during the complete Festival, from 9 a.m. through 6 p.m. on Saturday, and from 10 a.m. through 5 p.m. on Sunday. Artists who fail to follow this rule will be ineligible for prizes and may be denied admission to future Festivals.
Only accepted artists may exhibit works within their assigned booths. Subletting booth space is prohibited.
Any artist who has been accepted in the “Emerging Artist” category may not, in subsequent years, apply to the Festival as an emerging artist.

Display and Sale of Work
Artists shall not display or sell manufactured or kit jewelry, ceramics cast from commercial molds, glass created from commercial molds, art supplies, commercial displays, decoupage, or candles. Artists may display and sell hats, purses, and apparel that are designed and hand-made by the artist.
Artists shall not display or sell non-original commercially reproduced items such as posters, greeting cards, postcards, calendars, t-shirts, or buttons.

Works of art that have won any award at the Festival shall not be prominently exhibited in the artist’s booth at any subsequent Festival while the juror is reviewing the booth. Such artwork may be kept in a portfolio, bin, or other non-prominent location.

Only the works of accepted artists may be displayed or sold at the Festival. “Sale” signs are prohibited. Ribbons and awards from other art shows or other festivals may not be displayed.
All artwork shall be displayed in its final form. Artists shall not engage in painting, drawing, or any other production of artwork or revisions to artwork during Festival hours.

Artists shall only exhibit works typified by the images submitted with their application. Only one medium category may be exhibited in a booth.

All exhibited artwork must be available for sale. Prices for all exhibited artwork must be clearly noted on or beside each piece. Notwithstanding the foregoing, the prices for jewelry may be noted on a price list which is displayed and readily available for viewing by all patrons.

Booth Display
Regular booth spaces measure approximately 10' deep x 10' wide.  Regular booth spaces will be marked by Festival personnel before artists are permitted to set up their booths. Terraced booth spaces are larger than 10’ x 10’ and may vary in size depending on the space.  Terraced booth spaces are marked by the natural parameters of the terraces on the north east side of the park.  All artwork must be contained within the assigned space.

All displays should be wind-resistant and able to withstand large crowds. Water-resistant coverings and weights are highly recommended. These items will not be supplied by the Festival.
Artwork may not be affixed to or leaned against any tree, pole, or other fixture within the Festival grounds.
Stakes, or any tool or display that penetrates the ground is prohibited.

Sharing of booth space is prohibited. Only one exhibitor will be permitted in each space unless artists applied and were accepted as partners on collaborative work.

Each artist must exhibit a minimum of five works to be eligible for jury. To be eligible for jury, the name of the artist and the booth number (provided at check-in) must be displayed clearly in the artist’s booth.
All paintings must be framed or mounted. Unframed watercolors, drawings, and graphics must be displayed in a portfolio or a bin.

Category-Specific Rules
Artwork (other than photography) that is printed using inkjet technology will be permitted only in the digital art category. Original, limited edition prints of digital art will be permitted and must be signed and numbered as part of an edition. Digital art refers to original artwork that is created on a computer.

Photographs must be signed and numbered and must be the artist’s original image. Artists are encouraged to identify clearly whether a photographic print is produced digitally or through a traditional photographic process (silver print, Polaroid, dye-transfer, etc.).

Ceramic works must be handmade by the artist. If multiple pieces of the same design are displayed, each must be signed.

Jewelry must include components designed and hand-crafted by the artist using traditional methods of casting or fabrication/construction. No commercially manufactured elements, other than findings, are permitted. Items created solely through the stringing of beads and similar materials on wire, string, or cord, with no elements handmade by the artist, are not permitted.

Reproductions are not eligible for awards. All reproductions must be clearly and individually labeled as reproductions. No other terms, such as “print” or “offset lithograph” may be used. Labels must say “reproduction.” Reproductions must be in signed editions of no more than 750.

Reproductions may not be framed and displayed alongside original work. Reproductions must be placed framed or unframed in a browsing bin separate from original work and clearly labeled “Reproductions.” Reproductions must be an ancillary part of the artist’s display.

“Hand colored” or painted reproductions are not permitted and may not be displayed or sold as original artwork. Giclees, or ink-jet prints of original artwork produced in another medium, are considered reproductions whether they are printed on canvas, paper, or any other surface.

Each artist is responsible for collecting Florida state sales tax on sales made during the Festival and remitting such taxes to the local office of the Florida Department of Revenue.

Vehicles will only be permitted on Festival grounds during designated load-in and load-out times absent express permission from authorized Festival personnel.

Artists must present a photo ID when delivering or picking-up any artwork that has been pulled by the juror. Artwork pulled by the juror and delivered by an artist may not be retrieved by the artist until the last day of the Festival, after the time designated by the jury room attendants.

Penalties for failure to abide by these rules include immediate removal of artwork in violation of the rules, ejection from the Festival, and possible suspension from exhibiting in future Festivals. If an artist fails to disclose previous award-winning artwork in violation of these rules, all artwork from that artist may be deemed ineligible for jury and awards.

Any artist or artist assistant who engages in inappropriate, aggressive, abrasive, or illegal behavior or who violates these rules or any other Festival policy may be expelled or banned from the Festival and future Festivals. Any artist who applies for admission to the Festival after having been banned shall not be entitled to a refund of any application fee. Any artist who is inadvertently invited to participate in the Festival after having been banned may be asked to leave and shall not be entitled to a refund of any application or booth fee.


“Original artwork” shall refer to artwork that is one-of-a-kind. Artwork that is printed utilizing inkjet technology must be created on a computer and then exhibited as first printed in order to qualify as an original artwork. Original artwork printed utilizing inkjet technology may be modified by other methods, such as traditional painting, and exhibited in the mixed media category.

“Original limited edition prints” shall refer to an image that originates as digital art, a photographic negative or a traditional printmaking technique (including, without exclusion, linoleum blocks, woodcuts, etching plate, stone lithograph, or silk screen) when such image is executed in media worked by the artist himself/herself, printed in a limited edition, signed, and numbered.

“Reproduction” shall refer to original artwork that is scanned into a computer or photographed onto film and then printed as an inkjet print, photograph, offset lithograph, etc. The defining factor is that an original piece of artwork already exists prior to the printing – everything that follows is a reproduction.


Booth Information
To accept an invitation to the Festival, artists must pay a non-refundable exhibition (booth) fee by December 1, 2018. The standard booth fee is $445.00. A limited number of premium, corner and terrace booths are available for $565.00. All 2018 Festival award winners who are exempt from the selection process are still required to pay the applicable booth fee.
The Festival is an outdoor festival and makes no representations or guaranties as to attendance, foot traffic, weather conditions, or the availability of the Festival site. The Festival site is a park owned by The City of Tampa, and in severe cases, the Festival site may be closed in whole or in part.  This is a risk assumed by each artist, and there will be no refunds due to weather or other events that impact attendance at the Festival or causes a park closure.
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