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Art on the Street Guidelines and Artist Application

Art on the Street 2020 Applications - Deadline EXTENDED March 16

Art on the Street is co-presented with Downtown Guelph Business Association and features contemporary fine art and craft. The juried event has grown since 2003 to become Guelph's largest outdoor exhibition and sale. Art on the Street spotlights talent within the regional arts community and offers a fresh-air art experience for Guelph’s residents and visitors. Each year, approximately 100 established and emerging artists showcase their works to several thousand visitors in temporary, open-air studios. Art on the Street is a free event which welcomes art lovers of all ages.

Saturday, June 20, 2020
10 am – 5 pm
Quebec Street, Downtown Guelph


Please read our exhibition guidelines in detail before applying. To be considered, your application must be completed in full, including the payment of required fees. For assistance with your application, or to request a printable copy of the guidelines and application please contact Fan-LIng Suen at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 519-836-3280.


Eligible Categories
Important Dates
Late Applications
Fees (Application Fees/Booth Fees)
Original Work/Reproduction Policy
Support Materials
Application Images
Jury & Selection Process
Tents & Display Information
General Exhibitor Information (Exhibition Hours, Load-in, Load-out)
Safety. Weather and Event Cancellation Policy


Ceramics – refers to all work in clay
Digital Media – refers to any original work for which the original image, or the manipulation of other source material, was executed by the artist using a computer
Drawing – refers to works created using dry media including chalk, charcoal, pastels, pencil, wax, crayon, etc. or from the fluid medium of inks and washes applied by pen or brush
Fibre – all work crafted from fibres including basketry, embroidery, weaving, leatherwork, tapestry, papermaking and hand-crafted wearable items
Glass – All works where the primary material is glass
Jewellery – all works of jewellery whether the work is produced from metal, glass, clay, fibre, paper, plastic or other materials
Mixed Media – all works in both 2- and 3- dimensions that incorporates more than one type of physical material
Painting – works created in oils, acrylics, watercolour, etc.
Photography – photographic prints made from the artist's original image, which have been processed by that artist or under their direct supervision
Print Making – printed works for which the artist has hand manipulated the plates, stones, or screens
Sculpture and/or functional art– all 3-dimensional work made in any medium, excluding jewellery


January 23 - Applications Open
*March 13 EXTENDED - Paper Applications and payments close at 4:00 p.m. 
March 16 EXTENDED - Online Applications and payments close at 11:59 p.m.
APRIL 15 - Artist Notifications of Acceptance

April 29 - Booth Payments Due
MAY 6 - Final date for cancellation with booth fee refund. Application fees will not be refunded in event of a cancellation, regardless of membership status. No booth refunds will be provided after this date.
June 20 - Art on the Street

*Please note Guelph Arts Council is open from Tuesday-Friday, 10:00 a.m.- 4:00 p.m.. Paper applications are due on Friday March 13 by 4:00 p.m. Please submit your applications to

Guelph Arts Council
42 Carden St
Guelph Ontario


Award Categories:

·         Best of Show
·         Honourable Mention
·         Best Booth
·         People's Choice
·         Emerging Artist

Booth numbers and nametags will be provided – these MUST be prominently displayed. Without, exhibitors will not be eligible for an award. "No booth number, no nametag, NO PRIZES!" Art on the Street 2020 Award Winners will receive a Guelph Arts Council membership (or renewal) with the opportunity to exhibit their work in Guelph Arts Council's Annual Member Exhibition. Best of Show winner will be invited to return as an Art on the Street exhibitor in 2021.


Late applications are not considered.


Artists are responsible for paying all associated application and booth fees. Failure to pay fees on time will result in your application not being considered, or your space being forfeited.

Application Fees

All applicants must pay a $10 application fee to be considered. If paying by cheque, it must be dated at or before the deadline date, March 8, 2020. Online payment is available through the online application.

Application Fees will be rebated to Guelph Arts Council Artist Members in the form of a further $10 discount on the member-level booth fee.

Booth Fees

All booth fees are due by April 7, 2020. Fees not received by this date may result in the forfeiture of your booth space.

$175 – Established Artists*

$150 - Established Artists who are Artist Members of Guelph Arts Council. To be eligible for the member discount, your GAC Artist Membership must still be active on the festival day, June 20,2020. If your membership is set to expire before June 20, 2020, you must either pay full fees or renew before applying as a member. If you aren't sure when your membership expires, that's ok! Just give us a call, and we'll help you out.

$125 - Emerging Artists** (GAC members and non-members)

*Established Festival Artists are experienced exhibitors at booth-style exhibitions and fairs. Situated on Quebec Street, Established Artists will experience heavy foot-traffic. This is a very busy day with many sales opportunities!

**Emerging Festival Artists are just breaking into the art fair exhibition scene. Situated in the adjacent RBC parking lot, the throng of visitors is still steady but not overwhelmingly busy. This is a great opportunity to practice your sales pitch and engage with visitors. If you still aren't sure whether you fit as an emerging or established festival exhibitor, give us a call 519-836-3280.

Note that your fees are for your booth space, exhibition operations, and advertising support only. Expenses related to tent or display rentals, or other costs associated with your participation are not included and are the artists' sole responsibility.


An accepted artist may cancel their participation at any time*. Cancellations must be received in writing (electronically is acceptable).

·         Cancellations received before 11:59 p.m. on April 17, 2020, will receive a full refund of the booth fee. Application fees will be retained in all cases of cancellation, regardless of membership status.

·         *Cancellations received after 11:59 p.m. on April 17, 2020, will not receive a refund.

In all cases of cancellation, your booth is considered forfeited. Art on the Street reserves the right to fill your vacated space with another artist.

Art on the Street has never been cancelled and we hope we never have to. However, our Weather and Event Cancellation Policy outlines the circumstances under which the event may have to be shut down for safety reasons. We regret that we will not be able to issue refunds of booth fees. Exhibitors who participated in an event that had to be shut down for emergency reasons will be afforded the opportunity for automatic acceptance on their application to the following year's show. 


To protect the reputation of Art on the Street as a fine art show, only original works of art are accepted into the exhibition. General merchandise, unless it forms an integral part of the artistic work, will not be accepted. Factory or mass-produced work is not permitted. Limited edition runs of fine art prints may be considered.

Violations of this policy may result in your dismissal from the exhibition, without refund, at any time.


Support Materials

Your application must include the following support materials:

• SEVEN high resolution images of work you plan to include in the show
• ONE photograph of a previous booth or example display
• An Image List, numbered to match your image file titles. Indicate size and medium. You may include a brief description.
• CV (Curriculum Vitae)/bio which outlines your artistic background and exhibition history, however minimal or extensive it may be. We encourage you to include a description of how your work is made, particularly in the case of mixed media, digital, sculptural etc. The jury finds it very helpful to understand the work. 


Your application will be supported by seven (7) images of your work, and one (1) image of a display, installation, or booth set-up of your work. Each image should represent the work you intend to show at the exhibition, and should only display work relevant to the category(s) in which you intend to exhibit.

All images should be:

·         In the range of 500 – 1024 pixels wide, 500 – 768 pixels tall
·         High enough resolution to clearly see details (in focus, ~72-300dpi)
·        Suggested filename convention: "Image number_Your Name_Art on the Street 2020_Image title"

Do not neglect your images! The jurors reviewing your artwork are looking for originality, quality, and consistency in your ideas, execution, and design. They make most of their decision based on what they see in your support material. If your images are too dark, out of focus, or poorly lit, the jurors will not be able to assess your work adequately and may reject your application as a result.

Your display should be professional, attractive, and safe. The jury requires a booth/display image to assess your ability to put together a quality display. There is an award for best booth, so aim high.

If you've never displayed your work in a booth before or forgot to take a picture when you did - don't panic! We just want to see that you have considered how to professionally and attractively display your work. Fake a nice display on your home walls, or set up a beautiful table layout on your lawn in the sunshine, and take a picture of that. 

If you don't have experience making digital images, there are resources online to help, or you may wish to hire a professional photographer to document your work. 


Art on the Street is a juried exhibition. Each year, our juries, consisting of artists and industry professionals, review all submissions. Within each category, the jurors select the strongest work based on originality, quality of work and support materials, and consistency of ideas and design.

Only artists who have been reviewed by this year's jury are accepted into the exhibition.

All artists will receive a notification of acceptance status, sent to the email provided on the application, on March 23, 2020.

Please, do not call regarding your acceptance status. Notifications will not be given over the phone except for reasons of accessibility. You may call with questions regarding your application, but all notifications of acceptance status will be in writing via email.

After you have received your acceptance status, please contact Fan-Ling Suen at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 519-836-3280 if you would like more information about the jury’s assessment.


Art on the Street organizers do not provide any display tents or equipment directly to any exhibitor. All necessary equipment will need to be provided by the exhibitor.


Remember, booth numbers and nametags will be provided – these MUST be prominently displayed. Without, exhibitors will not be eligible for an award. "No booth number, no nametag, NO PRIZES!"

All structures or displays must abide by the following rules:

·         The tent or displays may not extend beyond the limits of the booth space (10'x10')
·         Tents must be secured to the ground using a minimum of 40lbs per leg.
·         Tent weights must be visually professional. Cat litter boxes and broken cinder blocks are not acceptable. By all means, get creative, but find a way to make your weights attractive, safe, and professional, as they are considered part of your display. Here's a tutorial recommended by a long-time exhibitor at this event: http://etsymetal.blogspot.ca/2009/06/tent-weights-tutorial.html
·         Signage or displays may not extend beyond the opening of your tent.
·         Plinths, benches or other display shelving must be properly weighted and secured to the ground.
·         All display fixtures, tents, and other structures must be removed by the exhibitor at the close of the exhibition. Artists may pack up no earlier than 5:00 p.m. and no later than 6:45 p.m. Vehicles will not be allowed on site until 5:30 p.m.

Failure to abide by these policies will result in the immediate removal of your display at your expense, and may result in the forfeiting of your booth space with no refund given. Sudden wind gusts can cause tents and displays to topple, damaging not only your own artwork but that of your neighbours. It has happened in the past, and for that reason, we absolutely require all artists to properly weight their tents.

For consistency, Art on the Street requires that artists display only in white top tents. Failure to comply will negatively impact any future applications to Art on the Street.

Please note that Art on the Street takes place outside, rain or shine. Rain, high winds, and periods of extreme heat and sun are all possible during the exhibition. The exhibition is not responsible for your display area or any damage caused by weather. Participation is at your own risk, and you must sign a waiver on the morning of the event to participate.

Bob Estrin Photography offers thorough tips on every aspect of selling work at festivals, including tips on how to keep your tent safe and looking awesome!


Exhibition Hours

Saturday, June 20, 2020 - 10:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Artist exhibitors are required to be on-site and available during those times. The exhibition takes place rain or shine.

Load-in of artist exhibitors begins on Saturday, June 20, 2020, at 7:15 a.m. and ends promptly at 9:00 a.m.

Exhibitors are asked to unload without setting up, move their vehicles to parking, then return to set up. The street is narrow and the speedy removal of vehicles prevents traffic jams, allowing the event to open on time. 

All vehicles must be removed from the exhibition site one hour before the event’s public operating hours. This means no cars, trucks or vans on site after 9:00 a.m. No exceptions will be made.

Load-out will maintain the same access restrictions as load-in. Load-out will occur between 5:30 p.m. and 6:45 p.m.

Vehicles will not be permitted to enter the exhibition site until 30 minutes following the public operating hours. Street must be cleared of tents and vehicles by 6:45 p.m. No exceptions will be made.

Please maintain cordial interaction will all exhibitors, staff, volunteers, security, and police during this process. Priority is placed on safety, and all are working towards a quick and stress-free experience.


Guelph Arts Council, the Downtown Guelph Business Association, and the City of Guelph are not responsible for any lost, stolen, or damaged items during the exhibition.

Artists are not covered under any other insurance policy besides their own. We recommend that exhibitors look into obtaining damage and liability insurance for artists. 

Please see our Weather and Event Cancellation Policy for details that can help you understand the effects severe weather or other emergencies could have on the event. 




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