2023 Black Creativity Juried Art Exhibition





Call for Artists 2023
For more than 50 years, the Museum of Science and Industry (MSI) has hosted the nation’s premier exhibition of African American art. This annual show presents more than 100 works of art from professional and emerging Black artists from across the United States.  

Applications to the 2023 Black Creativity Juried Art Exhibition are now being accepted. Submit your work!

Contemporary works created in any visual medium are accepted.  

General Category: Black artists over 18 years of age. 

Teen Category: Black artists who are 18 years of age or younger OR currently enrolled in grades 9-12 (or the equivalent).  

General Category
Best in Show:                          $3,000
Second Place:                         $2,000
Third Place:                             $1,000

Teen Category
Best in Show:                          $500
Second Place:                         $300
Third Place:                             $200

1. Work must have been completed in the past three years (2020-present).  

2. Each artist may submit up to four (4) individual artworks for consideration.

3. Submissions are only accepted via CaFE and each entry will be judged anonymously and as an artwork’s entirety. MSI reserves the right to reject submissions that are poor image quality. (If artworks are 3D, diptych, tryptic or a series, they should be presented completely in one submission image and identified as such in the title and dimensions.)

4.  Artwork must be original, unsold, and not have been selected for any previous Black Creativity Juried Art Exhibition.

5.  Any video artwork must be ADA compliant.

6.  Accepted object dimensions:

  • 2D hard-sided works (stretched canvas/framed) may not exceed 96" in any direction.
  • 2D soft works (unframed textile) may not exceed 104" in any direction.
  • 3D mid/large-sized, heavy and/or installation works will be reviewed per artwork, based on MSI’s gallery, safety, and physical installation capabilities. MSI is not able to install artwork which hangs from the ceiling.
  • Artwork may not exceed 70 lbs.
  • Video works are only able to be presented on monitors; we are not able to install projected works.

Additional specifications for artwork finishing are below; be aware of them when considering your submission choices.   

How to Apply
Jurying will be from digital assets only, with submissions only accepted via CaFE.

Proofread your application; submitted information will be used for paperwork and label copy should you be accepted. There are very limited capabilities for edits after acceptance. MSI reserves the right to reject submissions that are incomplete. 

  • Values should represent the sale value or, if not for sale, the insurance value. A value must be provided, even if artworks are not for sale.
  • Dimensions should represent the full and complete dimensions of the artwork, including frame.

Media files used for the application must comply with CaFE specifications:
IMAGE: Only JPEG or JPG. 1200 pixels or greater on the longest side. The file size may not exceed 5MB.
AUDIO: AIFF, WAV, XMF, MP3 up to 10MB with a min bit rate of 96 kpbs/max 320 kbps or SoundCloud, Spotify, or iTunes URL
VIDEO: MOV, MP4, WMV, 3GP, AVI, ASF, MPG, M2T, MKV, M2TS up to 100MB with a min resolution of 640 x 480/max 1920 x 1080; min 12 fps/recommended 30 fps or YouTube or Vimeo URL. Linked videos must be public.

Application Deadline
October 16, 2022 (full exhibition timeline below)

Accepted artists will be notified via email through the CaFE system. 

Exhibition Timeline:

  • Submissions close: October 16, 2022 (11:59 PM CST)
    • Note: neither MSI staff nor CaFE technical support are available on weekends, including the closing date.
  • ​​​​​​​Notice of acceptance: Late October/Early November
  • Loan agreement due: December 2, 2022
  • Shipping window: (non-Chicagoland artists) November 30 – December 14, 2022 
  • Local drop-off dates: Thursday, Dec. 15, Saturday/Sunday, December 17-18, 2022.  Timed entry by reservation only.  
  • Exhibition opens: January 16, 2023
  • Artist's reception: To be announced
  • Exhibition closes: April 23, 2023
  • Local pickup dates: Friday & Saturday, April 28 & 29, 2023
  • Return shipping window:On/after May 1, 2023

Accepted Works
All accepted works for the Juried Art Exhibition must be framed or otherwise in a finished state and must be ready for immediate installation as described below and expanded upon in the ‘Artists Instructions’ page (provided after acceptance notification):

There is no adherence directly to walls for any artwork, i.e. pins, nails, Velcro, magnets or tape. 2D works, works on paper, other wall-mounted work must have adequate framing and glazing (plexi or glass) and be in a finished state and have quality hanging hardware. Paintings must be in a finished and dry state. Textiles must include pockets, rods and/or hardware for installation if not standard. 3D works must be stable and able to ‘stand’ on their own. Generic AV equipment can be provided by MSI for videos, but specific types/sizes are not guaranteed. 
Accepted artists are responsible for delivery and pickup of their works on the dates specified in the schedule below. Artwork may not be shipped without prior approval from MSI, and must be packed in sturdy, reusable container(s) and include clear instructions for unpacking/repacking. See the Legal Agreement tab for additional shipping conditions.  

Sales and Commissions
All sales inquiries received by MSI will be forwarded directly to the artist. No commission will be taken from sales. Work does not have to be for sale to be exhibited in the 2023 Black Creativity Juried Art Exhibition but cannot have already been sold to a third party. If an accepted work is sold prior to the exhibition opening or during the exhibition, the artists must notify MSI.

For more information
For technical support with the online submission application, visit the Help for Artists page or contact CaFE support via cafe@westaf.org or 303-629-1166. 

For all other questions, contact MSI at juriedart@msichicago.org.


  • MSI reserves the right to disqualify entries that, upon receipt, differ markedly from submitted images or are not ready for professional installation and presentation.
  • MSI reserves the right to refuse any work delivered in inadequate packaging or received in damaged condition. Artists must take all necessary precautions to ensure the safety of their your work.
  • All works must remain in the 2023 Black Creativity Juried Art Exhibition for the duration of the exhibition. MSI is not responsible for any works left after the scheduled pick-up date. No accommodations will be made for early pick-up or shipping.
  • MSI will not be responsible for minor wear and tear resulting from normal handling.
  • Submission of your entry will be understood to indicate your agreement with these terms and conditions. Accepted artists will be required to sign a Loan Agreement agreeing to these and other terms.
  • Publicity: By submitting a work for inclusion in the 2023 Black Creativity Juried Art Exhibition, the artist agrees that the Museum is permitted to use, edit, reproduce, publish, transmit and display images or footage of the artist’s work(s), including those submitted by the artist as part of their entry, in films, video, signage, mailing, programs, online image gallery and other forms of media including social media for the promotion and display of the 2023 Black Creativity Juried Art Exhibition and other purposes as the Museum may determine, including promotion and fundraising for the Museum. The Museum will not be responsible for the unauthorized use of the images or footage by third parties.
  • Shipping: Accepted artists outside of Chicagoland may ship their works to MSI with prior approval from MSI. Such artists are responsible for all associated incoming shipping costs (packing, transit, insurance). MSI will ship works back to such artists at MSI’s cost, including shipping insurance for up to $10,000, using shipping carriers selected by MSI. For artworks valued above $10,000, the artists may obtain separate, supplemental shipping insurance for the full value of the art at their own cost and coordination. If the artist chooses not to obtain the supplemental insurance, the artist will be required to sign a release of claims in favor of MSI for amounts above $10,000. MSI will not be responsible for any amounts exceeding the amount paid by the insurer.

Entry Fee:

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