Applications are open now for the award-winning, three-day Des Moines Arts Festival®, which will be held in downtown Des Moines’ Western Gateway Park June 22-24, 2018. The Festival is offering a 50% discount off the application fee for artists who apply by Oct. 16 with the coupon code EarlyBird2018.


The outdoor Festival of arts and culture attracts more than 200,000 people each year to downtown Des Moines. The Festival is dedicated to the highest standards and works diligently to maintain a positive environment for artists and their clients.


The application process is facilitated completely online through ZAPPlication® (ZAPP®), a universal online application system that allows artists to submit and manage applications for participating art shows, festivals and fairs via the Internet. Interested artists can open a free account on www.zapplication.org, search for “Des Moines Arts Festival” and follow the instructions from there. More information can be found on the Festival’s website at http://www.desmoinesartsfestival.org/how-to-apply/.


The jury is tentatively scheduled for Jan. 31-Feb. 2, 2018 at 700 Locust Street, Suite 100 in downtown Des Moines. Applying artists and special guests are invited to a special Jury Preview on Wednesday, Jan. 31 beginning at 5:30 p.m. Projection of images for the jury begins promptly at 6 p.m. The jury preview is an opportunity for artists to view their images at the same time and in the same manner, the jury will see them. An email notice with all the details will be sent to all applicants. Approximately 165 spaces will be available via the jury process. An additional ten (10) booth spaces are reserved for 2017 award winners, and up to four (4) spaces are reserved for special invitations.


On or before March 1, 2018, the Festival will notify applicants of results using the email provided in their ZAPPlication.


The Festival also encourages Iowan residents who are currently enrolled in an institution of higher education anywhere in the country to apply for the Emerging Iowa Artist program (EIA). The EIA program provides for residents to apply, free-of-charge, and have their work juried by the same professional jury that views and selects the professional visual artists. If selected, emerging artists are offered the opportunity to showcase their talents at one of the nation’s most decorated arts festivals. Qualified artists are required to apply in the same manner as professional artists and submit their work in accordance to the specifications. All applicants are required to provide at the time of application proof of residency and enrollment to ensure the integrity of the program. All work submitted is juried by the same jury. All rules and submission requirements remain the same for EIA applicants. Complete information may be found on the Festival’s website at http://www.desmoinesartsfestival.org/eia.


The application deadline for the 2018 event is Jan. 7. For more information on the application process please visit http://www.desmoinesartsfestival.org/how-to-apply/or contact Des Moines Arts Festival executive director, Stephen King at sking@desmoinesartsfestival.org.