Event Information

Springfield Old Capitol Art Fair 2019

Old State Capitol Downtown Complex
Springfield, Illinois (Midwest)

Phone: 217-417-5865
Event Dates: 5/18/19 - 5/19/19
Application Deadline: 12/1/18 Midnight CST

The application deadline has passed.


Images: 5 (a booth shot is required)

Fee (Application Fee): $35.00

You can submit up to 2 applications for this show.


Event Summary
Set against the backdrop of the Illinois Old State Capitol building, art lovers find the Springfield Old Capitol Art Fair to be the jewel of the Midwest.  This tradition of fine art has brought artists and shoppers from across the country flocking to downtown Springfield’s two day outdoor art gallery for over 50 years.  Free to the public, the juried fair is dedicated to top quality and media variety, keeping more than 30,000 eager buyers coming back each year.

In addition to a premium fair with many amenities, the Springfield Old Capitol Art Fair boasts $15,000 in artist awards, a catered evening Artist and Patron party, a unique Children’s Tent to encourage the young collector, a food court and live music.

Please discover your success at the Springfield Old Capitol Art Fair!

General Information


Saturday, May 18, 2019, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Sunday, May 19, 2019, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.




*Acrylic     *Ceramics     *Drawing     *Fiber     *Glass     *Jewelry     *Metal     *Mixed Media     *Oil     *Other     *Photography     *Printmaking     *Sculpture     *Watercolor     *Wood


October 11, 2018:  Zapplication jury application begins

November 29, 2018:  Zapplication jury application closes

January 10, 2019:  Zapplication jury results emailed to artists

January 10, 2019 – February 16, 2019:  Accepted artists complete booth application via Zapplication and purchase their booth(s)

February 19, 2019:  Waitlist artists notified of booth openings (if any)

March 16, 2019:  Booth refund deadline. Artists must submit a written request (via email or mail) for a booth refund. An artist requesting a booth refund, for any reason, before the stated refund date will receive a 75% refund of their booth fee. No booth refunds will be made after the stated refund date, regardless of the reason.

May 17, 2019:  Booth set up.  Time varies according to booth location.

May 18-19, 2019:  Springfield Old Capitol Art Fair weekend.


*Volunteers circulate during Fair hours for booth sitting / restroom breaks
*SOCAF hired security guards patrol the Fair area during the night
*One free ticket to the Artist and Patrons Awards Reception per single booth, and two free tickets per double booth.
*Complimentary coffee, pastry and fruit available each morning

Booth judging will begin at 9:30 a.m. Saturday. If you wish to be eligible for competition, your booth must be ready by this time. The awards are as follows: FIRST PLACE - $1,500; SECOND PLACE - $1,300; THIRD PLACE - $1,000; BEST NEW ARTIST - $750. The judges may select up to six artists to receive GENERAL AWARDS OF MERIT of $500 each. In addition, there are awards of $750 each in the following CATEGORIES: Acrylic, Ceramics, Drawing, Fibers, Glass, Jewelry, Metal, Mixed Media, Oil, Other, Photography, Printmaking, Sculpture, Watercolor, and Wood. The artists receiving a category award must have the majority of his/her work in that particular category. Artists receiving category awards are not eligible for merit awards.  A category award will not be awarded if there are fewer than five exhibiting artists in that category.  In addition to these monetary awards, there are several guaranteed civic purchases.

Children's Tent judging will begin at 8:30 a.m. on Saturday.  If you wish to be judged for the Children’s Tent, you must turn in your pieces at your check-in station prior to this time.  Children’s Tent awards are as follows:  FIRST PLACE - $500; SECOND PLACE - $400; THIRD PLACE - $300. 

Award recipients will be announced at the Artists and Patrons Awards Reception on Saturday night.   Award winners in any category (booth or children’s tent, but excluding civic purchase) will receive a jury waiver and automatic invitation for the next year’s Fair.


The Children’s Tent is an open air tent staffed by SOCAF volunteers, and it showcases artwork provided by you, the exhibitors.  Children go through the tent with a volunteer (no parents allowed!) to select and purchase your artwork at a very nominal price of $4, $5, or $6. This artwork must be representative of the art sold in your booth (no “rejects” or “mistakes”).  You may submit/donate between 1-100 pieces of art.  If you submit your pieces, all profit is returned to the artist.  If you donate your pieces, all proceeds from the sale of the artwork are a tax deductible donation to SOCAF to use for student scholarships.  Artists are invited to enter one judging piece for the Children’s Tent (this is voluntary).  You must submit/donate at least TEN pieces of artwork to the Children’s Tent (NOT including the judging piece) to be considered for an award.  An award in this area exempts an artist from jury for one year and guarantees the artist an automatic invite back to the next year’s Fair.


All inquiries regarding food vendors or musical acts should consult the SOCAF website, www.socaf.org, to contact the appropriate person.  The zapplication site is for artists only.

No face painting booth inquiries, please.



An artist's statement must be prominently displayed in the artist’s booth describing the art, its processes and intent.  Artists who choose to use reproductions of original works must remember to mark each reproduction as a "reproduction."  Reproductions are limited to 20% of booth space and must be kept in a browsing bin; they may not be hung in display space.
Definition of a reproduction: If an original work is copied and reproduced by digital or photographic means and printed on an offset press, Xerox copier, a serigraph press, or through a computer by means of an inkjet or laser printer, it is a reproduction.  This definition includes giclees. Each piece must be clearly labeled as a reproduction.  Reproductions are not eligible for cash prizes. 
Definition for limited edition prints: this includes all media of hand-printed editions such as: intaglio, lithography, woodcuts, linocuts, serigraphy, as well as photographs. Editions must not exceed 250 in an edition and must be marked as “limited edition prints.” Limited edition prints are eligible for cash prize awards in their respective show medium categories.
Note cards, postcards, calendars, coloring books, food products, posters, t-shirts, velvet, etc. are not allowed under this policy. Ceramics made from commercial molds, commercially fabricated jewelry forms and settings, and items made from hobby store kits are also not acceptable.
  1. NO SPIKES are permitted anywhere at our Fair.  This includes both tent and artwork spikes.  If we see spikes being used, we will remove them and not be responsible for any damages.
  2. Cutting tree branches or digging in the ground to customize booth space is not permitted.
  3. Generators and/or electrical hookups are NOT permitted at our Fair, and plugging into the outlets on the Old State Capitol grounds is not permitted.
  4. All work must be for sale, clearly priced and signed.  All work exhibited must be of the quality, category, and body of work that were shown in the images used in the jury process.
  5. The Springfield Old Capitol Art Fair board is not responsible for the loss, theft, damage, or defacement of any property displayed at the Fair.  This includes, but is not limited to, damage resulting from the weather.  Artists, therefore, are encouraged to remove everything of value from their booths Friday and Saturday evenings.
  6. All cancellations must be made in writing and either mailed or emailed to the Springfield Old Capitol Art Fair Exhibitor's Chair.  An artist requesting a booth refund, for any reason, by the stated refund date will receive a 75% refund of their booth fee.  No booth refunds will be made after the stated refund date, regardless of the reason.
  7. Artists must be present with their work for the entire duration of the Fair.  Representatives, including spouses and family members, may not attend in lieu of the artists.  They may be present and assist, but the artist MUST be present throughout the event.
  8. An artist who "no shows" the Fair will not be invited to return to future Fairs.  All artists are required to participate in both days of the Fair.
  9. A $25 fee will be charged for all bank returned checks, cancellations, and foreign funds.
  10. Artists are responsible for collecting and filing Illinois sales tax.  Tax information will be provided to all artists in their informational packets.
  11. Please be prepared for bad weather.  The Fair goes on regardless of the weather; there is no cancellation or "rain date".  Consider bringing sand or weights if the forecast calls for wind as we do not keep those on hand.  We have NO control over the weather and wind - please plan accordingly. 

Booth Information

*Please check the new site map for changes in this year's booth numbers and spaces.*


Single booth (10'x10'):  $350     Double booth (10'x20'):  $600

*Your booth fee includes a $20 vendor’s license that SOCAF pays to the city of Springfield.

** A $50 reimbursement will be sent to you after the Fair if you submit and/or donate a minimum of 11(this includes a judging piece) pieces to the Children't Tent.

** Detailed information about the Children’s Tent can be found under General Information.


  1.  Returning artists who participated in the previous year’s Fair and request their same booth are given first priority for choice of booth number.  Please do not state “same as last year”.
  2. Returning artists who participated in the previous year’s Fair and request a different booth are given second priority for choice of booth number.
  3. All other artist requests are then considered and we attempt to accommodate desired booth location as best we can.  It would be best for you to list a general location rather than an exact booth number.
  4. Booths located within the Old State Capitol grounds are on grass.  All other booths are on concrete.
  5. Your booth assignment cannot be changed and not all location requests can be accommodated.
  6. Please refer to the event site map for the Fair's booth layout. 

  1. All display spaces are artist supplied 10'x10' single booths or 10'x20' double booths.  There is NO additional space planned around booth spaces for storage.  All materials necessary for the display and safety of the artists' work are to be provided by the artist.
  2. All artwork must be set up within the booth space.  No art is to be displayed outside the allotted booth space.  You may hang artwork on the sides of your booth that are not adjacent to another artist's tent.
  3. You may begin to set up your booth the Friday prior to the Fair.  Weather permitting, all booth locations should be chalked and ready for set up by Friday at 6:30 p.m.  DO NOT set up your tent until its location has been marked in chalk.  If you set up your tent before the location is marked we may move your tent and we will not be responsible for damages.  An email will be sent to participating artists in April with more specific set up times relating to your booth location. 
  4. Exhibits should be set up by 9:30 a.m. each morning of the Fair.  Limited volunteer help will be available starting Saturday at 6 a.m. and Sunday at 8 a.m.  THERE IS NO VOLUNTEER HELP ON FRIDAY FOR SET UP OR FOR SUNDAY TEAR DOWN.


All booth sales will go to the artist.  SOCAF does not take a percentage of artists' profits.
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