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Call For Artists 2020

The Call for Artists for the 2020 Melbourne Festival Art & Architecture Trail is now OPEN. The closing date will be 31st March. Art & Architecture Trail 19th & 20th September 2020.

Planning is now underway for the Art and Architecture Trail at Melbourne Festival 2020, the Trail will take place on Saturday 19th and Sunday 20th September 2020. Full details of how to apply are listed below. Artists will be requested to email applications, including 6-8 jpeg images (250-500kb) along with an Artist Statement / CV and FULL contact details, to Melbourne Festival by 31st March. All entries will be collated and presented to our selection panel who will shortlist artists. Our team will then endeavour to match shortlisted artists to suitable host venues by 31st May. ALL applicants will be contacted by 31st May to confirm whether they will be offered an exhibition space.

 This information below outlines what you will need to do to apply for selection to exhibit on this years Art and Architecture Trail.

What is the Melbourne Festival ?
The Melbourne Festival is a creative and visual arts festival. The Festival was launched in 2005 and has been extremely successful. Last year we had great publicity, over 6000 visitors and feedback from both artists and visitors was extremely positive. Approximately half of artists selected to take part in the Trail will be invited from the artists who exhibited last year, the remainder will be selected from the applications received from new artists and other artists who have exhibited in previous years. We offer places to approximately 150 artists each year. Our aim is to keep Melbourne Festival fresh, to this end we plan to rotate artists who have previously exhibited between venues and rest some of our past artists each year to enable some new artists to take part.
This year we intend to build upon the success of the previous years of this event. We are planning crafts, art, music, educational workshops and demonstrations. The Festival is a not for profit organisation and is still run by a group of like minded volunteers committed to encouraging creativity in all its forms in Melbourne and Derbyshire.

Where is Melbourne?
Melbourne is a picturesque, old market town set in the rural landscape of South Derbyshire on the edge of the National Forest. It is home to Melbourne Hall and Melbourne Parish Church (one of the finest Norman buildings in the Midlands). The local community is full of people with an interest in the Arts and has many societies and community groups. It is a creative, vibrant community. (Type DE73 8DW into Google Map for location).

What is the Art & Architecture Trail?
Melbourne Festival Art & Architecture Trail is a mapped trail of venues in a series of easy walking loops throughout the heart of Melbourne. Each venue houses selected artists exhibiting their work for sale to the visiting public. Venues comprise of all the available public, church and civic buildings, various open spaces and rooms in local residents homes. For previous Trails we were successful in persuading many residents to open their homes, giving us some stunning venues, both indoors and outdoors, and providing an exciting and diverse trail– each year there are approximately 70 venues.

When is Melbourne Festival Art & Architecture Trail?
The Arts Trail this year will take place over the weekend of Saturday 19th and Sunday 20th of September 2020. Artists will be able to set up on Friday evening, although early access may be possible to allow set up on Saturday morning in some venues. The trail will be open to the public from 10am to 5pm on both Saturday and Sunday. The exhibitions are taken down at 5pm on Sunday evening. We can supply and erect display boards (6ft high by 4ft wide, MDF, cream) where required allowing you to present work to high standards and so helping to encourage sales.
Note: All makers are required to be present at their exhibition during the opening hours of the trail on both days and work must be for sale, unless previously agreed.

What do we want?
We want contemporary artists and makers, working in all materials, creating original work of any size. We are looking for a diverse range of craft and fine art makers to exhibit in any medium. It should be noted that whilst most of our venues are indoors we have secured some very good outdoor venues for suitable work.
The selection criteria for work submitted is as follows:
1. Work should be innovative, imaginative, original and engaging.
2. The work should be of excellent quality in both materials and application.
3. The work should not be offensive.
4. The work should be of safe and sound condition and suitable for public display.

Deadline for submissions.
The deadline for submissions for the Arts Trail is 31st March 2020. All artists will be informed of the decision regarding their submission by the end of May when we have matched all selected artists to suitable host venues. All details regarding venues and facilities will be advised at this time. If you haven’t heard whether you have been successful by mid-June please contact the Festival Office –

We do not charge an application fee. We will however take a fee of £80.00 from those artists who are selected for the Arts Trail (£50.00 for Artists in their own home / studio). We will collect this fee from the successful artists / makers in advance of the event. Allocation of space will be dependent on receipt of the fee, the fee is payable by 30th June 2020. This fee contributes towards advertising, publicity and the general running of the Festival. We do not take commission on sales.

What to send us: Arts Trail.
If you would like to submit your work for exhibition in the Arts Trail please send a covering email / letter with full contact details and 6 – 8 clear images of your work with descriptions such as title, medium and sizes attached. Please make sure that all images are clear, in focus and faithful to your work. See the Image / Document Requirements below. Please send us a CV / Artists statement as well if you wish.
Image / Document Requirements.
Please submit applications and images by email or on a Memory Stick or CD by post.
Email / CD. If you are sending your submission by email please save your images as JPEGs on medium compression (level 3 – 4). Try to keep the image file size to around 250Kb – if necessary split images into 2 sets to email. Title the files with your name and number in sequence (e.g. sbrown1.jpeg). Do not include fullstops or other punctuation in the title (they will confuse the computer). Text files such as statements and CV’s should be sent as Word files, however pdf files are acceptable. If you are sending images by CD the image files should also be sent as 250Kb JPEG’s. If you send large files or a different format, or prints, the images loaded onto the website may not be as you sent them or may be delayed due to amount of work required to reformat. Due to number of applications submitted we do not automatically acknowledge receipt of all entries, however, we do contact ALL artists at the end of May. Please do not send orginal artwork.

We are looking for some makers to demonstrate on the Trail at the same time as exhibiting their work. We need to know quite specific details with regard to your activity for health and safety reasons and in order to find a suitable venue. If you are interested in demonstrating please send details with your Trail Submission and we will gladly consider it.

Send your submissions to:
By email:
By post: Sharon Brown, Director, Melbourne Festival,49 Church Street, Melbourne, Derbyshire, DE73 8EJ.
If you want posted materials returned please include an SAE.

Don’t forget closing date is 31st March 2020.

Further details of the events will be updated on our website and any information specifically relating to exhibiting Artists will follow upon successful submission.

We are all looking forward to another successful and enjoyable Festival and hope you will be part of it.