Octagon Art Festival - Octagon Center for the Arts
Art Festival

Octagon Art Festival


 45th Annual Octagon Art Festival

Sunday, September 27, 2015     10 am-5 pm

Ames, IA          FREE admission


Artist Entry Deadline: June 15, 2015

Electronic Jury Entry Form HERE


NOTE: Our website payment form is down (as of Friday June 12). Please mail in check to cover booth fee and any add ons (corner or electricity) or call during our business hours to pay over phone with credit card between 9:00 and 5:00 M-F.


Volunteer at the art festival:

Click to View Volunteer Opportunities on VolunteerSpot

“We’ve been doing this show since 1975, and it is our favorite! Keep up the great work!” – JK Creative Wood


“I had my best one day sales ever! Continue your great promoting efforts.” – Quiet Places Photography



Join us for the 45th Annual Octagon Art Festival!  Visual arts, children’s art areas and performing arts form the foundation of the Octagon Art Festival. More than 14,000 people attend our festival. You will be in good company with more than 100 professional artists from across the Midwest who produce and display high-quality original artwork in a wide variety of media. The festival is held outdoors on pavement, rain or shine, in the Main Street Cultural District in downtown Ames.



The mission of the Octagon Center for the Arts is to serve as an influential regional center for the arts, present important exhibits, offer comprehensive art education programs and provide a retail outlet for artists. The Octagon offers dynamic programming that includes significant visual exhibits and memorable public programs that enrich the lives of central Iowans.



Artists at least 18 years of age may apply to exhibit original work in fine art or fine craft. Work created with use of commercial kits, molds, patterns or pre-fabricated forms will not be allowed.



Jury fee is $15 and booth fee is $100. Each accepted exhibitor will be allotted a 12’ X 10’ space with 2 feet of open space between adjacent tents. Artists must provide their own display units, tents, tables and chairs. It is the exhibitor’s responsibility to carry the necessary insurance to protect against any losses and/or damages to property that may result from participation in the festival. The Octagon Art Festival will not be responsible for injuries or damage to work and or displays due to weather or unrelated incidents. Octagon staff members have the authority to adjust booths for visual or safety reasons. All booth space requests will be honored if possible on a first submitted, first assigned basis. Requests cannot be guaranteed. Pre-approved artists, selected by the previous festival jurors, have first choice of booth locations.



A panel of professional artists will serve as jurors and will perform an on-site judging for cash purchase awards on the day of the festival between 10 am - 2 pm. Three Honorable Mentions ($100 each) and one Best of Show ($150) will be presented to the winning artists at 2 pm.



Artists are required to submit a non-refundable $15 jury fee by check or money order. Octagon members receive a booth discount. Please view link HERE for electronic entry form. Jury fee must be paid in advance of the jurying process. Selected artists will be contacted after jurying to submit booth payment. Under no circumstances will the jury fee be returned. Submit electronic entry form and payment by June 15. Entries received after June 15 must include $25 late fee.



-Applicants may submit a total of 5 images via file upload on electronic form: 4 images of artwork and 1 of booth setup (highly recommended)

-Images must be JPG format, resolution of 300dpi or higher and no larger than 2 MB.

-Title each image following this format: last name_first name_image#(1-5).media.

     Example: Smith_Jane_#1glass.jpg Images not following this format will not be considered.

The images must proportionately represent works that will be exhibited in your booth. For example, if your display includes both ceramics and jewelry, please submit two ceramic images and two jewelry images. A jury of professional artists will make the final selection of festival participants by viewing the submitted images, so it is important to send high-quality images.



All works on display must be for sale. No commission will be taken by the Octagon. An Iowa Sales Tax Number is required by the State of Iowa, and it is the responsibility of each exhibitor to notify the Octagon of this number. A one-day temporary permit will be available for artists without an Iowa Sales Tax Number for those who reside outside the state of Iowa. Exhibitors are responsible for collection and payment of the 7% City of Ames/Iowa Sales Tax.



Submission of an application indicates a commitment to participate in the Octagon Art Festival. Artists withdrawing from the show are subject to a $30 cancellation fee. Absolutely no refunds after August 15.



Artist entry deadline ……………………June 15, 2015   Entries received after June 15 must include $25 late fee.

Jury results emailed to artists………July 1, 2015

Artist booth location and festival info emailed to artists…….August 1, 2015

Cancellation deadline, refunds denied………..August 15, 2015

Octagon Art Festival in Ames…..….Sunday, September 27, 2015


QUESTIONS?  Call 515.232.5331 or email director@octagonarts.org


For a list of 2014 festival artists, click HERE

For map of festival, click HERE



© 2015 Octagon Center for the Arts. All rights reserved.