Release Date: June 6,2018

High Arts Festival accepting entries through June 18

Visual artists, musicians, filmmakers and now, literary artists are invited to showcase works in downtown Akron venues during the High Arts Festival, with public and juried votes determining $32,000 in cash prizes. First place public vote and first place juried vote in each discipline receive a grand prize of $3,000. Two runners-up in each of the four disciplines receive $1,000.

Now in its second year, the High Arts Festival is a 23-day celebration of local artists and multidisciplinary art forms designed to engage Akron area residents and to elevate the Akron arts community. High Arts is possible through a Knight Arts Challenge grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and Peg's Foundation, formerly known as The Margaret Clark Morgan Foundation, the philanthropic organization behind the creation of Akron Art Prize.


"We are thrilled to be expanding the High Arts Festival to include literary art this year, and to see the festival grow," said Kelli Fetter, director of engagement and events for Downtown Akron Partnership. "We learned so much from the artists and participants in 2017 and think the changes this year will help further our goal of inspiring both the arts community, and the Akron community as a whole."

The festival runs Sept. 14 through Oct. 6. Festival weekends for each genre will highlight each discipline and provide voters the opportunity to see the film, literary art and music entries performed live. Visual art is on display throughout the entire festival period.

Visual Art 
The visual art weekend is Sept. 14-15 with all entries displayed at Summit Artspace throughout the month during normal business hours. Entries are also viewable on the High Arts app and website. A visual art entry must be visual in nature and may not include performing arts. The categories are for 2D or 3D original artwork.

Film festival weekend is Sept. 21-22 with entries screened at The Nightlight and also viewable on the app and website. Filmmakers can enter in the categories of Super Short Film: An original film that is 60 seconds or less or Short Film: An original film that is 61 seconds up to 10 minutes.

Literary Art
Literary Art weekend is Sept. 28-29 with entries performed at venues in the Historic Arts District and also viewable on the app and website. Artists can enter in the categories Poetry: Writing that formulates a concentrated imaginative awareness of experience in language chosen and arranged to create a specific emotional response through meaning, sound and rhythm or Prose: A literary medium distinguished from poetry especially by its greater irregularity and variety of rhythm and its closer correspondence to the patterns of everyday speech (credit: Merriam-Webster dictionary).

Music festival weekend is Oct. 5-6 with performances taking place in the Northside and Historic Arts District. Songs can also be heard on the app and website. A music entry must be an original song performed by the musician or group who created it. Musicians can enter as Solo/Duo or Group.

In addition to cash prizes, grand prize and juried winners in each category have the opportunity to go on a two-day trip in October to a to-be-announced city to learn from the local arts community.

The entry process is open until 11:59 p.m. on June 18. The cost to enter is $25 with applications and complete rules and regulations for each genre available at Entrants must be 18 or older to apply.  

The University of Akron will underwrite UA student or group entries by sponsoring the $25 fee for the first 40 that apply. All current UA students are welcome to enter. The School of Art at Kent State University also sponsors the application fee for students enrolled in the School of Art and any alumni who graduated from the School of Art within the last two years (June 2016-June 2018). This offer is available to the first six entrants to apply.

For more information, contact Kelli Fetter, DAP director of engagement and events at 330-374-7676 or Artists and patrons are encouraged to follow High Arts Festival on and use the hashtag #HighArtsFest18 on Twitter and Instagram.