Michigan Fine Arts Competition

2019 MFAC top award: Ulrich by Philip Ruehle (Owosso MI); oil on panel; 14″ x 11″


Exhibition: July 10-August 27, 2020

Deadline: June 1, 2020

2020 Michigan Fine Arts Competition

JUROR: Kevin Grogan (see bio below)

Entry Fee: $40.00

Awards: Up to $5,000 in cash prizes


The Birmingham Bloomfield Art Center (BBAC), a nonprofit community art center serving the Detroit region, has hosted the Michigan Fine Arts Competition annually since 1982 when the Detroit Institute of Arts turned the statewide competition over to the BBAC. Every year, more than 500 artists from Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois & Wisconsin enter the competition. The MFAC is juried by artist(s) or curator(s) of distinction, who select current works of the highest quality. Cash awards support working artists, while recognizing the contributions they make to the cultural fabric of our region.

• Online Application Process Opens — Wed., March 20 — CLICK HERE to explore & apply
• Juror Results — Fri., June 19 — Posted on BBAC website, BBArtCenter.org; accepted & declined artists will be sent an email
• Intake of Accepted Artwork — Sat., June 27, Noon-4pm + Mon.-Tues., June 29-30, 10am-4pm
• Award Notification (by email) — Thurs., July 9 (by the end of the day)
• Exhibition Opens — Fri., July 10
• Exhibition Closes — Thurs., Aug 27, 5pm
• Exhibition Outtake — Fri., Aug. 28 & Sat., Aug. 29, 10am–4pm & Mon, Aug. 31, 10am-4pm


Participation is open to all artists 18 and older, living and working in Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois and Wisconsin.  Original works in all media (except video or canvas/gallery-wrapped copies) created and/or finished after January 1, 2019 will be accepted for jury providing those works have not been previously exhibited at the BBAC.

Entry Fee: $40 (non-refundable) payable online by Visa, MasterCard, Amex or PayPal only.

Entry Process

All applications will be processed online through CaFÉ™ at CallForEntry.org. CaFÉ™ is free to participating artists and includes detailed tutorials. After reviewing our prospectus AND the CaFÉ™ tutorial, if you have questions contact us via phone or email, and we will assist you. (248.644.0866; Info@BBArtCenter.org – please put MFAC in the subject line) 

Application Procedures

  • An artist may submit up to two (2) entries.  The $40 fee covers one or both entries.
  • One image is permitted per each submitted work of art.
    • Please refrain from using/showing your name in the image(s). Do not include borders.
    • Images of 3D work must include all components intended for display.
  • Please DO provide specific details; e.g., oil on panel; mixed media – clay, wood & found objects (not just “mixed”); acrylic on canvas with sewing threads, etc. The juror wants to know as much as possible about your artwork.
  • Entries will be juried online only.


• All artwork displayed at the Birmingham Bloomfield Art Center (BBAC) shall be the original work of the artist. No reproductions will be accepted. No canvas wrapped copies or Editions over 100.
• Each accepted work must be identified with the following information: Artist Name, Address, Phone #, Email Address; Title; Media; and Price/NFS. (If the work is NFS – not for sale – an insurance value must be stipulated or the work will not be accepted for the exhibit.)
• The BBAC will accept responsibility for the works of art during the exhibition, but will not be responsible for any works delivered in damaged condition. Artists wishing to otherwise insure their work should contact their insurance agents directly.
• The BBAC is not responsible for work damaged if it is not picked up by August 31. Artists whose work is not picked up by that time will incur late charges.
• Condition reports will be made for each work upon arrival. Artists must note the number of parts or pieces per entry if more than one part or piece.
• Work MAY NOT, for any reason, be removed from the exhibit prior to the end of the exhibit.
• Maximum height of any artwork is 9′ (ceilings: 10′). Weight restrictions will be dealt with on a case by case basis.


  • Submission of a work for jurying shall constitute an agreement to comply with all the conditions set forth in this prospectus. The BBAC and juror reserve the right to a final selection of accepted works. Decisions made by the BBAC and juror are final.
  • The juror and/or BBAC may exercise the right to reject any work not accurately represented by image; work that fails to meet eligibility requirements; work that exceeds gallery size or weight limitations; or work that is not shipped properly or does not arrive on time.
  • All accepted work will remain as placed by the installation team and may not be withdrawn before the close of the exhibit.
  • If a piece is of a delicate nature or easily damaged, please work with the exhibitions coordinator during intake for placement and installation.
  • The maximum value or price of a work of art may not exceed $25,000 without the artist providing an insurance rider for the additional amount.


  • Artists are strongly encouraged to submit art that will be for sale.
  • Work available for sale will be sold at the price indicated on the entry form only. No price changes permitted after acceptance into the exhibit.
  • A 45% commission is retained by the BBAC on all sales made during the exhibition, to support the competition and the BBAC’s exhibition, education, and ArtAccess programs. The BBAC is a 501 (c) 3 nonprofit organization.

Rights & Reproductions
The BBAC reserves the right to photograph exhibited work and use either these photographs or the artist’s entry images in both print and electronic materials for publicity, promotion, education, and grant proposals.

About the Juror

Kevin Grogan has directed the Morris Museum of Art since April 2002. Between 1980 and 2002, he held directorships at the Contemporary Art Center of Virginia, Fisk University, and the Tennessee Fine Arts Center at Cheekwood (now the Cheekwood Museum of Art). From 1971 until 1980, he served on the staff of The Phillips Collection in Washington, D.C., filling a variety of curatorial and administrative roles. In addition to his association with hundreds of exhibitions over the length of his nearly 49-year long career, he has authored, edited, or contributed to dozens of publications, including The Morris at 25, The Wild Treasury of Nature: A Portrait of Little St. Simons Island—Paintings by Philip Juras, Soldier Artist: Conrad Wise Chapman; First Lady Ellen Axson Wilson and Her Circle;, Shadows of History: Photographs of the Civil War from the Collection of Julia J. Norrell; Golden Afternoon: English Watercolors from the Elsley Collection; Georgia Masterpieces, Pleasant Journeys and Good Eats Along the Way: The Paintings of John Baeder; Nashville Portraits: Photographs by Jim McGuire; Red Grooms: In Pursuit of Serious Fun;The New Georgia Encyclopedia; The Encyclopedia of Southern Culture; and The Tennessee Encyclopedia of History. He has lectured widely on a variety of art and culture-related topics, and he has held adjunct faculty positions at Vanderbilt and Fisk Universities. He is active in numerous professional organizations, including the American Alliance of Museums, the Southeastern Art Museum Directors Forum, and the Southeastern Museums Conference. He has served on the boards of numerous local and national organizations, including the Folk Art Society of America and the Art Museum Partnership. A native of Washington, D.C., he was educated at Franklin and Marshall College, the American University, and Vanderbilt University. He and his wife, Kate, an educator, are the parents of two grown children.

BBAC Gallery Summer Hours
Mon.-Sat., 9am-5pm

About the BBAC
The Birmingham Bloomfield Art Center has been providing “art for all” since 1957 and is a regional non-profit art center committed to promoting visual arts experiences. Each year more than 500 classes are offered for all skill levels and ages preschool to senior citizens. Throughout the year, nearly 9,000 individuals are served by classes, workshops, art camps, ArtAccess programs, special events, and exhibitions that are free and open to the public (with an additional 75,000 impacted by Art Birmingham, the BBAC’s annual fine art fair). The BBAC also supports hundreds of artists each year, with opportunities to teach, exhibit, and sell their work. The BBAC is a 25,000-square foot facility, with nine classroom studios, five exhibition galleries, and a retail Gallery Shop.

The BBAC is supported by the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs and the National Endowment for the Arts. For more information: BBArtCenter.org or 248.644.0866.

Questions? 248.644.0866 or Info@BBArtCenter.org


BBAC Robinson Gallery 1 for FB cover photo

The Birmingham Bloomfield Art Center has hosted the Michigan Fine Arts Competition annually since 1982 when the Detroit Institute of Arts turned the statewide competition over to the BBAC. Every year, more than 500 artists from Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois & Wisconsin enter the competition. Many winners have gone on to national prominence as a result of this competition. Each year, the MFAC is juried by artist(s) or curator(s) of distinction, who select current work of the highest quality. Cash awards support working artists, while recognizing the contributions they make to the cultural fabric of our region.

MFAC Jurors

1982 Grace Hartigan
1983 Philip Pearlstein
1984 Miriam Schapiro
1985 Richard Anuskiewicz
1986 Romare Bearden
1987 Judy Pfaff
1988 Alice Aycock
1989 Patterson Sims
1990 Gracie Mansion
1991 Alvin Loving
1992 Gladys Nilsson
1993 Laura Trippi
1994 Ellen Phelan
1995 James DelGrosso
1996 Jane Hammond
1997 John Walker
1998 Larry Rivers
1999 Nancy Mitchnick
2000 Howardena Pindell
2001 Brenda Goodman
2002 Nick Cave
2003 Richard Nonas
2004 Al Hinton & Sei Saito
2005 Susan Wilczak
2006 Jerry Berger
2007 Gerry Craig, Rebecca Hart, Janet Teunis & Susan VanArendonk
2008 Brian Rutenberg
2009 Tony DeBlasi
2010 Sondra Freckleton
2011 John Palmer
2012 Mi-Kyoung Lee
2013 Brad Durham
2014 DJ Hellerman
2015 Joseph Winterhalter
2016 Terence Hammonds
2017 Noel Anderson
2018 Emily Mae Smith & Adam Henry
2019 Jerald Melberg