Diversity is at the heart of what it means to be an artist.
Artists possess a powerful tool to evoke social change. Without uttering a single word, they can enlighten, educate and affect change around the world. Embracing Our Differences invites you to participate in creating a society where diversity is embraced and individuality is celebrated. Become a part of this change by submitting your original art to Embracing Our Differences and its annual international outdoor juried art exhibit.
Featuring 50 billboard-size images measuring 16 feet (5m) wide by 12.5 feet (4min) high, each work of art is created by local, national and international artists reflecting their interpretation of our theme "enriching lives through diversity and inclusion."
The 2021 exhibit will be on display January 20 through April 1, 2021 at Bayfront Park in downtown Sarasota, Florida. Since 2004, the exhibit has hosted over 3.3 million visitors, in addition to 397,000 students via our education programs, for a very unique opportunity to experience the importance of diversity and inclusion in our lives.
See our "Frequently Asked Questions" section below for details on submitting your art.
To view past winning selections, please visit our Galleries page.
Teachers submitting student art should click here or email us for a simplified submission process.
How to Submit
Please review the "Frequently Asked Questions" section below for full details on all technical requirements for submitting your art;
Your art may be any size and medium; however to submit digitally requires a digital file of your art which is capable of being uploaded to our server;
Your art must be HORIZONTAL in orientation which means that it must be wider than it is tall - submissions that do not meet this requirement will be disqualified (see the example below):
Please label your digital art file with the “title” and your name – for example, "Embracing Our Differences-Mark Smith;"
Your digital file must be a high resolution image of no less than 300 dpi (the higher the better);
Your digital file must be less than 400MB in size; AND
Include a brief (200 word maximum) “Artist Statement” explaining your art, your creative process and/or what the theme means to you.
If making more than one submission online, you will need to create a separate entry for each one.
Teachers may complete and submit art on behalf of their students and, at their option, substitute their personal or school contact information for that of their student(s). Teachers submitting student art work should click here or email us for a simplified submission process.
Teachers may complete and sign submission forms on behalf of their students and, at their option, substitute their personal or school contact information for that of their student(s). Teachers submitting student art should click here or email us for a simplified submission process; AND
A separate sheet of paper with a brief (200 word maximum) “Artist Statement” explaining your art, your creative process and/or what the theme means to you.
Completed submission packages should be mailed to: Embracing Our Differences PO Box 2559 Sarasota, FL 34230-2559 USAExpress mail, such as FedEx or UPS, should be delivered to:Embracing Our Differences 1209 South Tamiami Trail Sarasota, FL 34239 USA
Artists, professionals, amateurs, students – everyone can participate. National and international submissions are encouraged. There is no submission or entry fee and there is no limit on the number of submissions.
There is no restriction on entering art which has been submitted to previous competitions.
You may not submit art or quotations to our annual competitions through this website or any related website unless you are 13 years old or over. Your submission to our annual competitions through our website or any related website indicates confirmation that you are at least 13 years old. If you are under the age of 13, you may still enter your art or quotation by submitting it through the mail. Please click one of the following to links to learn how to submit your art or quotation by mail.
A total of $3,000 (US) will be presented in the form of three separate awards - $1,000 each for “Best-in-Show Adult;” “Best-in-Show Student;” and the “People’s Choice.” The “People’s Choice” award will be determined by visitors to the exhibit.
Final selections will be chosen based on artistic excellence and originality in the reflection of our theme “enriching lives through diversity and inclusion.” This may include, by way of suggestion only, any one or more of the following: appearance; racial differences; physical or mental impairment; language, religious or cultural differences; environmental stewardship; social economic status; sexual orientation or identity; gender identity, positive attitude; inclusiveness; acceptance; taunting, bullying and confrontation; human rights and equality; understanding and kindness; empowerment; Holocaust awareness/"Butterflies of Hope" or any other topic which you believe furthers our theme of “enriching lives through diversity and inclusion.” Do not feel limited by these suggestions. We strongly encourage new and fresh interpretations of our theme. To download the full Art Selection Criteria, pleaseclick here.
All submissions must be an original concept and execution and not a copy or reproduction of the work of another. Final selections for inclusion in the exhibit will be made by a five-judge panel of professional artists, curators and art professionals based on artistic excellence and originality in reflection of our theme “enriching lives through diversity and inclusion.” Judges will also consider:
How effective the art will read when enlarged to billboard size (16 feet (4.9 m) wide by 12.5 feet (3.8 m) high) and displayed outdoors.
Is the theme clear and easily understood?
Does the art explore the theme in an unusual or previously unexplored manner?
Will the art and its message prompt discussion?
To view past winning selections, please visit our Galleries page. To view a short video of a prior exhibit, please click here.
To download the full Art Selection Criteria, please click here.
*Embracing Our Differences, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization and is not a political organization, therefore cannot endorse or promote any political candidates.
No. Only a digital file of your original art work will be accepted. Due to the number received, submissions will not be returned. Teachers submitting student art work should click here oremail us for a simplified submission process.
Yes. There is no limit to the number of pieces of art you may submit. There is no entry or submission fee. You may also submit works of art previously submitted to other competitions or to past Embracing Our Differences competitions.
Your original art may be any size and medium; however, you must create or scan and submit it as a high-resolution (minimum 300 dpi) digital file (JPG, JPEG, TIFF, PDF or EPS). Your digital art must measure no less than 12.8” (325.12 mm) wide by 8.8” (223.52 mm) high, or if larger, it must contain the same proportions. All art must have a HORIZONTAL orientation as shown below. Submissions which do not meet our technical requirements will be disqualified.
Click here to download templates for creating Embracing Our Differences artwork in the proper dimensions.
Horizontal means that your art is wider than it is tall. This is very important because of the way we print and display your artwork. Please see the photo below as an example of how your art, if selected, will be displayed.
The digital copy of your art which is submitted should have the highest resolution possible and at a minimum no less than 300 dpi. A resolution of 600 dpi or higher is even better. The higher the resolution, the better your art will reproduce when it is printed in a large scale format (16 feet (5m) wide by 12.5 feet (4m) high) for display during the exhibit.
Yes. If making multiple submissions by mail, you may include all digital art images on a single flash drive. You must clearly identify each file with the “title” of the artwork and your name – for example, “Coexistence-Mark Smith.” A separate signed submission form, color print and “artist statement” will be required for each artwork submitted.
If you are making multiple submissions online, you will need to submit each work of art as a separate entry.
Judging will take place in late November and ONLY those selected for inclusion in the exhibit will be notified by email in December. Due to the volume of submissions, only artists with entries selected for display will be notified individually. All winning entries will be posted on our website by early January. “LIKE” us on Facebook to find out earlier.
Yes! Teachers may complete and sign submission forms on behalf of their students and, at their option, substitute their personal or school contact information for that of their students. Teachers may also submit their student(s) art through a simplified process. Click here for more info.