Reader’s Letter: Zapp & Non-Juried Shows



I am a photographer who has never exhibited in a fair – festival; only exhibits. I attended a seminar on Zapp – Applications this past weekend and was told that the majority of shows have a ratio of 80% re-invite status and that leaves 20% for individuals like myself. The likely of getting invited is pretty slim. Do you have a list of non-juried shows that I could start off?

Any help would be appreciated. Thank you.
Pamela H

Hello Pamela,

Thanks for writing me. Where did you take this seminar? This is very unusual information and I believe it is incorrect.

From my experience and knowledge about the jury systems of art fairs it is rare for a show to have more than 10% invited exhibitors. These are usually the award winners from the previous year. Even if you extended that to 20% I think you would be stretching it.

Yes, there are a few events that are grandfathered, where that ratio would be expected, but not the majority by a long shot.

Do not think you need to apply to non-juried shows to get started in this business. 90% of the events are pleased to receive your application and you will be fairly treated.

I do not know the price points of your photos, or where you live, but if you are interested, you might get your feet wet at a weekend farmer’s market, where there is no jury and very low overhead.

Best of luck.

May I include your letter in an upcoming newsletter that goes to artists?
I would rather not say because I am a member of the organization and I don’t want to offend anyone. I am getting my feet wet per say by attending a few non-juried shows this summer — in fact one of them I found off your newsletter. Thank you. You can use my letter but please withhold my name. I would appreciate it. Thanks so much

Reader…can you give additional feedback on this issue? I feel that Pamela was given erroneous information at the seminar she attended.



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