Waterford, Michigan -- Artists from Wayne County can join their creative brethren from seven other counties as Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson announced Thursday’s opening of the annual online art competition.
The artists are vying for cash and prizes that total more than $16,000. Entries may be submitted to MiGreatArtist.com beginning Thursday at 9 a.m. until Oct. 9.
"There is a surprisingly deep well of talent here in the region," Patterson said. "This is a celebration of art and the artists whose work adds so much to our quality of life. We encourage those talented individuals to join us as we begin the search for the next MI Great Artist winner."
Patterson and Park West Gallery founder and CEO Albert Scaglione launched the contest in 2012 as a quality of life initiative to identify and support up-and-coming artists. Patterson said the cash awards have grown to a total of $3,000, with additional prizes bringing the total to more than $16,000 in cash and prizes.
"We are delighted to co-sponsor this contest and talent search." Scaglione said. "It provides a unique opportunity to expose artists to an unprecedented audience. I and the other judges are looking forward to reviewing the work and discovering more extraordinary Michigan artistic talent."
Artists who are 18 years and older who also live, work or go to school in the following counties are eligible: Oakland, Genesee, Lapeer, Livingston, Macomb, Shiawassee, St. Clair and Wayne counties. They may submit up to five original works of art online at MIGreatArtist.com for a public vote to determine the top 20 artists. A panel of renowned judges will choose the five finalists and winner. Complete rules about what art works and artists qualify for submission are on the website.
The MI Great Artist winner will receive $1,500; five submitted artworks framed by Park West Gallery; a group exhibition at Park West Gallery in Southfield from Dec. 1 – Jan. 8, 2016, with an award ceremony and reception; a scholarship to attend three Business Basics workshops at the Oakland County One Stop Shop Business Center; a one-hour consultation with an Oakland County business development representative; their artwork featured on a poster to promote one of Oakland County's signature quality of life events, printed by Park West Gallery; a solo exhibition at Park West Gallery; and a two-month solo exhibition at the Oakland County Galleria in the Executive Office Building in Waterford.
Four runners-up will each receive $375; framing by Park West Gallery of five artworks included in their submissions; a group exhibition at Park West Gallery Dec. 1 – Jan. 8, 2016 with award ceremony and reception; a scholarship to attend one Business Basics workshop at the Oakland County One Stop Shop Business Center; a one-hour consultation with an Oakland County business development representative; and a two-month solo exhibition in the Oakland County Galleria.
Artists may submit their work online from Thursday through Oct. 9. Public voting will take place at MIGreatArtist.com from Oct. 21-30. The top 20 artists will be posted on the website Nov. 2. Judges will review the top 20 beginning Nov. 4. They will announce the top five on Nov. 13. There will be an exhibition of the five semi-finalists at Park West from Dec. 1 – Jan. 8, 2016. Patterson and Scaglione will announce the winner at an evening gallery reception on Dec. 8.
The judges are Scaglione; Elliott W. Broom, vice president of museum operations at the Detroit Institute of Arts; Dominic Pangborn, founder of Pangborn Design Collection and former professor at the College of Creative Studies; Don Tocco, an artist whose work includes award-winning photography, paintings sold to high end art collectors, portrait sculptures of famous global leaders; and Kristie Everett Zamora, arts and culture coordinator for Oakland County's Department of Economic Development & Community Affairs.
MI Great Artist partners include Oakland County, Park West Gallery, AdvantageOakland.com and Oakland County Prosper® magazine.