March 2-3

Downtown Tampa

Emerging Artist Program

2018 Emerging Artist Gallery

The Emerging Artist Program

The Raymond James Gasparilla Festival of the Arts is proud to showcase the work of emerging artists, representing a diversity of styles and media, as part of our annual event. The Emerging Artists Program was created to recognize and showcase the artwork of up-and-coming artists who wish to establish themselves in a professional visual arts career.

A limited number of emerging artists will be selected to show in the festival from the field of applicants through a jury process. Once selected, these artists are invited to participate in the festival at no cost. They also will be provided with the use of an individual display tent and receive a $250 expense allowance.

Although these emerging artists do not compete with the other artists in the festival for prize money, their artwork will be reviewed by the festival juror and will be eligible for the $1,500 Emerging Artist Award.


Applicants to the Emerging Artists Program should

  • not have an established record as a professional artist showing their work in museums, art centers, major galleries or juried outdoor art exhibitions
  • not have more than 25% of their total annual income derived from the sale of their artwork, and
  • not be licensed professionally as a visual artist.

Emerging artists must abide by the same festival rules governing other festival artists. The Emerging Artists Program application must be accompanied by the artist’s biographical statement and three digital images of their artwork.


The Emerging Artist application for the 49th Annual Gasparilla Festival of the Arts is now closed.

Video Recap: 46th Annual GFA Emerging Artists Program (2016)

Watch a video featuring a number of Emerging Artists participating in the 2016 Festival. 

Send questions to:

Program Guidelines

  • Each artist must submit three digital images.
  • The artwork shown on three digital images must have been produced in the last three years.
  • The three images must represent the type of work that will be displayed in the booth.
  • Only work of the quality and type illustrated in the artist’s images may be exhibited.
  • The GFA rules committee may eject an artist exhibiting work not represented in his or her images.
  • Digital images should be of a high enough resolution to clearly show the work submitted and in JPG format.
  • Any on-site work must have written approval from the festival board prior to the start of the festival.

Essential Festival Information

  • Digital images will be reviewed by a selection juror for invitation to the Festival.
  • The festival takes place March 2-3, 2019.
  • A juror of national prominence will jury accepted original work and award prizes Saturday morning at the festival beginning at 9 a.m. Winners are announced and awards are presented during the Arts & Drafts gathering at Saturday at 6 p.m., near the Artist Hospitality area. An artist must be present to accept his or her award before 5 p.m. Sunday evening at the festival, or he or she will forfeit the award.

The Emerging Artist Program is made possible in part with the support of the Arts Council of Hillsborough County and the Hillsborough County Board of County Commissioners.