Event Information

Big Four Arts Festival 2019

Downtown Louisville Waterfront Park, Big 4 Bridge Lawn, 1103 River Road
Louisville, Kentucky (South)

Phone: 502-435-7602
Event Dates: 9/7/19 - 9/8/19
Application Deadline: 5/10/19 Midnight EST

The application deadline has passed.


Images: 4 (a booth shot is required)

Fee (application fee(non-refundable)): $25.00

You can submit up to 3 applications for this show.


Event Summary


The inaugural Big Four Arts Festival was the most attended (50,000+) two-day Event ever held at Waterfront Park on the Big Four Bridge Lawn which consist of four acres of tree lined walks overlooking the Ohio River, a-mere two-minute drive from downtown Louisville. Better than 2 million people visit Waterfront Park annually and 25,000 stroll the Big Four pedestrian bridge each weekend. Such was the overall success of the Festival that Louisville Convention & Visitors Bureau presented the Rose Award to the Festival for creating a NEW event that brought so much commerce to the city of Louisville! The Festival is known by artists for its EZ in-out access, spacious booth layouts, and many artist amenities. With a proven multi-media advertising campaign we will produce record crowds. "Louisville Loves the Arts"

We want YOU, the quality artist to join us in 2019!  All new jury-selected artists in 2019 will be jury-exempt in 2020. Festival dates: Saturday, September 7th(10am-7:00pm), Sunday, September 8th (10am-5:00pm). Friday September 6th is reserved for EZ-IN setup for artists, 9:00am-4:00pm.
Here’s what one artist had to say about the Festival:
"We do about 14 art shows a year; and I can tell you that this was the BEST one we have done this year.  Our sales were awesome.  Your advertising paid off, because the crowd was huge.  I loved the lay out - the park is beautiful.  You did a wonderful job planning this event."   - Debbie & John Wiles, GourDesigns, Matoon,...

General Information
Key Dates for the Big Four Arts Festival​​
Jan. 1, 2019         Artist application period begins
May 10, 2019   ​    Artist application deadline @ midnight EST
May 13, 2019       Artist jury process begins
May 31, 2019       Accepted artist notified by email
June 16, 2019      Deadline for invited artist to accept/confirm invitation, pay booth fees
June 20, 2019      Waitlisted artist to accept/confirm invitation, pay booth fees
July 10, 2019       Deadline for artist cancellations (if partial refund desired)
​Aug. 15, 2019      Exhibitor Memo booth assignments sent by email
Aug. 15, 2019      List of accepted artist posted to Big Four Arts Festival website
Sept. 6, 2019       Artist set-up 9:00 a.m.- 4:00 p.m./rain or shine. (Vehicles off lawn after 4:30)
Sept. 7, 2019       Artist Toast Party 7:30 p.m. (optional to artist) 
Sept. 7, 2019       Festival opens to public 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m./rain or shine
Sept. 8, 2019       Festival opens to public 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Sept. 8, 2019       Artist teardown starts at 5:15 p.m.

Permitted Works and Mediums
The Festival is open to individual and collaborating artists who make their own fine art and fine crafts by hand. All work must be original and made by the artist/collaborating artist; any subsidiary reproduction works must strictly adhere to the rules described in “Reproductions” below.  We accept the following mediums:
  • Oil
  • Pastel
  • Acrylic
  • Pencil
  • Pen and ink
  • Charcoal
  • Ceramic/ceramic sculpture
  • Fiber Art
  • Glass/glass sculpture
  • Jewelry
  • Metal work/metal sculpture
  • Other
  • Photography (standard and digital)
  • Printmaking
  • Stencil
  • Stonework/stone sculpture
  • Instruments
  • Book arts/papermaking
  • Woodworking/wood sculpture
  • 3d sculpture
Please refer to the expanded “Medium Definitions” in the Prospectus at bigfourartsfestival.com for detailed descriptions of each medium. If you believe that your work would enhance the quality of our festival and is not listed, we ask that you contact us. 502-435-7602.  We will consider any new, creative, quality expression made by hand.

Entry/Application Instructions

Juried artist applications are processed through ZAPP.  Emerging Artist applications should be submitted through the https://bigfourbridgeartsfestival.com/ website application. All applications posted after 12:00 a.m. midnight EST May 10, 2019 may not be considered. We reserve the right to refuse any application after said date.  You may submit up to 3 applications per artist profile (each application will incur a separate $25 fee). Any application questions please call: 502-435-7602.

​For an application to be processed, you must fully complete and submit the online application, including four digital images as specified below, and the $25 non-refundable payment through Zapp using an accepted credit card, Pay Pal, or check. Follow Zapp guidelines and quality specifications for uploading images. Please submit high quality images, as they are critical to the jury selection process.

All artists must submit a total of (4) images for jurying 3 images (representative of the artist work to be exhibited); 1 of booth (preferably an outside shot of the booth.) Do not submit images with any identifiable markings or of the artist themselves, which would compromise the jurying process.

​The application will have a field for the artist description of material and technique using 300 characters or less. Please provide a balance between inspiration, material, and technique. Statements are read to jurors during the process. Please submit a well-written statement, as portions will also be posted on our website and Facebook page to promote your works!

​We expect and encourage artists to offer a varied price range. We ask that the images you submit represent the price range you will display at the Festival. 

Jury is scheduled for May 13th - 15th, 2018. The jury will select a balance of mediums but we do not impose limits for any given category. The integrity of the jury panel review process is of the greatest importance to the Festival and to the larger arts community. Jury decisions are final and not subject to review. The jury is conducted by a panel of four experienced art community professionals and their selections will be based solely upon the quality of work as illustrated in submitted digital images. Images are viewed by medium categories, and artist statements are read during the multi-phase jurying process. Please Note: As a courtesy incentive to attract quality artists, jury-selected artists for the 2019 Festival will be jury-exempt in 2020.

​Accepted artists will be notified via email, or phone no later than May 31, 2019. A reserve list of Waitlist artists will also be selected to ensure a complete and balanced show. Waitlist artists will be notified by phone or email immediately after May 31, 2019, with booth fees due within 15 days of notification for those who wish to confirm.

​At the Event Director’s discretion, and on the Board of Director’s behalf, the Event Director may make up to eight additional artist acceptance decisions to enhance the quality and balance of the Festival.

If your application includes a collaborating artist, you must include both names with the application. To submit a Zapplication including a collaborating artist, please follow this procedure:
  • Go to “My Profile” on ZAPP
  • Enter one artist as the primary contact in the profile form (this name will always appear first in the publications and online if accepted).
  • After completing the information requested, enter the collaborating artist’s name in the section at the bottom of the profile page.
  • This information is carried over to the application for purposes of identifying a collaborative artist. No collaborating artists will be accepted after the jury process is completed.
All artists, including collaborating artists, must be present during both days of the Festival. Proper ID is required of both artists.  Collaborating artists may only show their joint work, and both artist names must appear on all application materials.

Three independent jurors are invited each year to evaluate all artists’ work in the Festival and to select six award winners. All artists, regardless of category, are eligible for these awards. Each award winner receives a ribbon, art award certificate, cash award, and is exempted from the jury process in 2020.
  • Best of Show - $500
  • 2-Dimensional Jurors' Choice - $250
  • 3-Dimensional Jurors' Choice - $250
  • Merit Award - $150
  • Best Booth Presentation - $150
  • Best Emerging Artist - $150 

Emerging Artist Program
It is a goal of the Festival to attract and support Emerging Artists from the region that have not previously participated in art festivals. If you qualify as an Emerging Artist and have interest in participating by showing your work, please email the Event Director @ b4b@twc.com and pay your application here.  Emerging Artists will be juried separately for this program. Please contact the Event Director by March 30 to be considered for entry into the Emerging Artist program.  Arts Festival staff will pre-screen and research emerging artists to confirm qualification for this category.  Once accepted, Emerging Artists are required to attend a mentoring session and a pre-event artist meeting.  Program participants are also required to volunteer on Thursday or Friday of the event weekend, hours to be designated by the Event Director. There are only 15 positions for the 2018 Emerging Artist category. Booth fees for Emerging Artists are discounted 50% ($212.50) below the Juried Artist booth fees thanks to scholarship donations from Louisville art patrons. The application period for entering the Emerging Artist Program is January 1 - March 30th. The Event Director will notify Emerging Artists of their acceptance by phone or email no later than April 30th.


The following items are not permitted at the Festival: any work that you did not make by hand or is not your own work. This includes but is not limited to, buy-sell, imported items, kit made or pattern items, and commercially manufactured items. If prohibited items are found, you will be asked to leave the Festival and forfeit all fees. Removal decisions are at the discretion of the Event Director who is the final arbiter of any such decision. Please do not apply if works include prohibited items described above!

The Big Four Arts Festival considers its enforcement rules and regulations our exclusive right and responsibility. Festival staff will visit all displays throughout the Festival to ensure that exhibitors comply with all Festival rules and regulations.

Work in juried images must be representative of the work to be shown at the Festival and in the correct inventory proportions. Example: If a photographer submits 3 black and white images and 1 color image to the jury, the inventory displayed must be representative of the submitted works.

Current body of work must be displayed starting from creation date of 2012 forward. Work created before 2012 will be considered reproductions and adhere to guidelines for reproductions.

The artist and collaborating artist must be present at check in, present valid picture ID, and must be present in the booth during festival hours except for reasonable breaks.

No mass-produced or manufactured work will be permitted.

All work must be designed and executed by the accepted artist(s). It is the work by the artist that is juried, therefore any change in the body of the work by the artist is not considered juried and may not be sold unless approved by the Event Director.

Artists are required to display an Artist Statement including photograph in their booth during the Festival.

The sale of promotional items at artist booths is prohibited. Examples include, but are not limited to: note cards, cards, postcards, posters, how-to books, books, calendars, t-shirts, mouse pads, coasters, or photocopies of any kind.

Artists retain 100% of their sales and are responsible for the collection and reporting of all applicable sales taxes. Kentucky sales tax is 6.0% and a Kentucky sales reporting form is provided for your convenience in the Exhibitor Memo. You do not report sales or taxes to us at the Big Four Arts Festival.
We all hope for great weather, but all exhibitors are responsible for having their booths weighted at a minimum of 25 lbs. at each corner to prevent damage from high winds. Weights must be attached to the frame of the tent. ​Light-weight, accordion-style pop-up tents are strongly discouraged. NO STAKING IS ALLOWED AT THE PARK SITE.

Artists will abide by Load-in/Load-out procedures and all instructions given by Festival staff. Late arrival will result in load-in at the conclusion of scheduled load-in periods.
Exhibitors are not permitted to bring dogs or other animals to the festival site, which is prohibited by City law and park rules.

Reproductions must be a subsidiary part of the artist's display, and not exceed 25% of booth inventory.  All reproductions must be clearly and individually labeled “Reproduction” on the front of each piece as such; no other terms such as "print" or "offset lithograph" may be used.

Works made before 2014 will be considered a reproduction and must be labeled as such.

Reproductions must be in signed editions of no more than 250, hand pulled by the artist.

Framed reproductions may be displayed on one wall of the booth, not to exceed ten (10) linear feet. All unframed reproductions must be displayed in browse bins.  An excessive number of reproductions will not be tolerated at the Big Four Arts Festival.  If you feel any artist is violating regulations or guidelines, please contact us during the Festival at: 502-435-7602.  All removal decisions on reproductions will be made at the sole discretion of the Event Director.

Artists are responsible for maintaining general liability insurance for their booth space during the event for their personal protection against loss.  The Big Four Arts Festival will not be responsible for any exhibitor property damage, as detailed in the Legal Agreement. Upon acceptance of your booth space, exhibitors must provide the Festival with an appropriate Certificate of Insurance, with B4B Promotions, Inc. listed as an additional insured pursuant to a general liability insurance policy with minimum event coverage of $1,000,000.


Booth Information
Booth size is 10x10, and the Festival is known for providing ample surrounding booth space. All exhibited work should be contained within the 10x10 area. There is no electricity available. No generators are permitted, but battery powered fans and devices are allowed. All exhibitors are responsible for providing display booths, racks, tables, fixtures, and associated display equipment and supplies.
  • 10x10 booth space fee:  $425.00.
  • 20x10 double booth space fee is $650.00;  Double booth spaces are limited and sold “first come/first serve” based on date of artist application through Zapp; all 20x10 booths are located at corner/intersecting locations.
  • Be sure to indicate the desired booth size in your application and make booth payment accordingly.
  • A limited number of additional standard-size parking spaces are available at $75.00, payable through Zapp. These are standard size parking spaces - large motor homes cannot be accommodated in the parking area.
  • For cancellations prior to July 10, 2018, booth space fees will be refunded less a $50.00 processing fee; no booth space fees will be refunded for cancellations after this date.
  • First preference is given to returning artists for 20x10 booths, and requests for the same booth location as the prior year, but the Festival reserves all rights with respect to final booth placement decisions.
24-hour security is provided for the event space and artist parking lots.  EZ In/Out set-up and tear down times will be assigned in the Exhibitor Memo. The event site offers easy access to booth locations.  All vehicles must be off the walks and grounds by 4:30 p.m.  NO STAKING OF TENTS IS PERMITTED DUE TO THE PARK’S IRRIGATION SYSTEM. PLEASE SEE TENT WEIGHT REQUIREMENTS IN RULES AND REGULATIONS.

Artist Amenities and Benefits
  • Free artist parking with 24-hour security
  • Booth sitters
  • Water delivery
  • Light breakfast on Saturday and Sunday
  • Negotiated discounts at nearby hotels
  • Trolley Service to participating downtown hotels and surrounding downtown area
  • Jurried prize awards totalling $1,450
  • E-Z In/Out access directly to booths
  • 24-hour security on festival grounds
  • Saturday Artist Toast Ticket (optional for artists)
  • Artists and their works promoted on the Big Four Festival website and Facebook page
Advertising Support:  Newspaper, Radio, TV, Facebook, Social Media, Local/Regional Event Calendars, Louisville Visitors & Convention Bureau, Newsletter, Signs, Flyer & Billboard

Event Location:       Downtown Louisville, KY, Waterfront Park, Big Four Bridge Lawn,
                                1103 River Road 40206
Event Name:            Big Four Arts Festival
Event Director:         Louis Nunnelley
Sponsoring Entity:    B4B Promotions, Inc.
​Email:                       b4b@TWC.COM
​Mail Address:           Big Four Arts Festival
​                                 1054 Oakwood Ave.
                                 Louisville, KY 40215
Telephone:               502-435-7602
​FAX:                         502-366-1896
Website:                   bigfourartsfestival.com
Trademark Statement
“Big Four” is a registered trademark of Waterfront Development Corporation. Used with permission throughout.

By Submitting a Zapplication or Big Four Arts Festival website application you are confirming that you have read and agree to all terms and conditions stated throughout this application and in the Legal Agreement should you be accepted to participate in the Festival. The Legal Agreement may be viewed by clicking on the “LEGAL AGREEMENT” link below.
Event Site Map: View Site Map