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Art Council’s Second Annual Art Competition

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With many public art events canceled or postponed in light of current global conditions, artists are seeking new opportunities to sell, showcase and succeed with their work. And here in Hernando, a trio of prominent arts organizations are hosting an art contest that doubles as a fabulous, multifaceted spotlight for the Hernando artist.

Hernando County Fine Arts Council has announced the launch of its Second Annual Art Competition. And this year’s competition is being hosted in conjunction with the City of Brooksville’s Uptown Art Gallery and Brooksville Main Street. “In keeping with our mission, this contest gives Hernando County artists an opportunity to share their artwork with the community and to gain exposure and recognition,” read an Arts Council press release. 

The winning artist will be featured at the City of Brooksville’s Uptown City Art Gallery at the May 14th reception; one also set to celebrate the opening of a new art gallery exhibit. Second, the winner will be part of the May 15th Downtown Brooksville Art Stroll presented by Brooksville Main Street and sponsored by the Hernando County Fine Arts Council. The winning artist will have the opportunity to display and sell additional artwork at this premiere ticketed event, a walking tour of artistic delights in all their various forms. The Art Stroll will lead guests through the doors of a number of downtown businesses, where they can meet and speak with Hernando County artists, see art demonstrations, and purchase art in a controlled environment where social distancing and sanitization supply a safer environment. All stroll event proceeds go to benefit the Brooksville Main Street Program and its mission to revitalize Historic Downtown Brooksville.

“The Hernando County Fine Arts Council is very excited to partner with the City of Brooksville and Brooksville Main Street for this contest,” said Allisa Babor, Communication Chair of The Hernando County Fine Arts Council. “When we made the tough decision to cancel the 2021 Art in the Park, we knew we still wanted to find a way to interact with our artists and celebrate their work despite our event cancellation. In this joint effort, we are creating exciting opportunities for our county’s talented artists!”

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The ultimate goal of the contest, read the news release, “is to broaden the horizons of artists in our community and other communities they engage with.” It offers artists the chance to have their work showcased on display at Hernando County’s only gallery, Uptown City Art Gallery, inside of Brooksville’s City Hall which features local artists. All contest entrants also are encouraged to submit their artwork to the Uptown City Art Gallery for a spring exhibition. Any artist wanting to display can contact Terri Carter directly at 352-540-3855 or 352-540-3810, or via email at [email protected]. Submitting your artwork to the gallery is free! 

“We have so much talent here,” said Terri Carter, executive assistant to the city manager at the City of Brooksville. “The arts council is helping me out, sending these artists my way. We’re working hand in hand. And here at the gallery, we’re not charging fees for any artists to display their art.”    


Natalie Kahler, Brooksville Main Street Executive Director, agrees. “We are pleased to expand the Art Stroll to include the art contest winner,” she said. “We also appreciate the participation of City Hall and the gallery.”

In the wake of the cancellation of this year’s Art in the Park event, Kahler said that representatives of all three organizations sought new ways to support Hernando artists at a time where public art events are few and far between. “We’re hoping to help the artists, and are hoping for a good response for the contest,” she said. 

The contest is free to enter and is open to visual artists who live in Hernando County. The contest will include a limit of 2 entries per person. All artists under the age of 18 must include parental consent.

Submitted designs should reflect and represent Central Florida or the Florida lifestyle, with artists being encouraged to select subjects that they feel showcase both the area’s beauty and uniqueness. For questions about submissions, contact [email protected].

Aside from exposure and recognition for their art, the contest comes complete with prizes as well including a  $250 Cash Prize; Featured artist at Brooksville Main Street’s May Art Stroll;

An interview spotlight on the Hernando County Fine Arts Council Website An online Art Directory listing for 1 year.

Dates to Note:

From April 12, 2021 – April 16, 2021, the Uptown City Gallery is accepting submissions for the May 14 gallery opening.

On April 16, contest submissions are due. (Gallery submissions remain open). The week of April 26, winners will be announced and notified. 

On May 14, at the Uptown City Gallery Reception, the winner will receive awards and prizes. Winners must be in attendance during the reception, 5 PM to 7 PM.

On May 15, the winner will present their artwork(s) at the Art Stroll Event (1 PM – 5 PM). Winners must be in attendance during the event. 

For more information, visit the contest page at www.hernandoarts.org/2021-art-contest.

“We look forward to seeing the amazing submissions for the contest as well as at the Uptown Art Gallery,” said Babor.


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