Durham Arts Council
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copyright © 1998-2008
Durham Arts Council, Inc.
120 Morris Street
Durham, NC 27701

Come face-to-face with the arts in Durham.



How Exhibits Are Chosen

The DAC 2020–2021 Annual Call for Artists is now open. Fill out and submit your application for a solo exhibit here. This call will close on January 31, 2020.

If you wish to propose an exhibit other than a solo show (for example; a show that includes the work of several artists, a show based on a theme, a group or association show), you will need to fill out an alternate application. You will find the special proposal application here. This application is also due by January 31, 2020, at 9pm.

What gallery space does the Durham Arts Council program?

The Durham Arts Council programs four gallery spaces — three galleries in the DAC building, and the pre-function corridor in the Durham Convention Center.

The Durham Arts Council building is a 52,000 square foot community arts center in downtown Durham that contains galleries, theatres, rehearsal studios, classrooms and meeting spaces.

There are 4 galleries in the building, but the DAC programs the following 3 galleries:

  • Durham Arts Council’s Allenton Gallery, main floor gallery area approaching the SunTrust Bank Gallery (approx. 42 running feet of hanging space) with halogen lighting.
  • Durham Arts Council’s Semans Gallery, second floor gallery area outside People’s Security Insurance Theatre (approx. 78 running feet of hanging space) with halogen lighting.
  • Durham Arts Council’s Ella Fountain Pratt Legacy Gallery, second floor gallery adjacent to the Semans Gallery and the Rollins and Wachovia Dance Studios (approx. 27 running feet of hanging space and flat screen video station) with halogen lighting. This gallery is dedicated to the work of artists who have received Durham Arts Council Emerging Artists Grants. If you have received an Emerging Artist Grant and are interesting in exhibiting, please contact Margaret DeMott, Director of Artist Services, at mdemott@durhamarts.org.

The fourth gallery in the building is the SunTrust Bank Gallery programmed by the Durham Art Guild, a separate organization granted space in the building by the Durham Arts Council. (3,600 sq. ft., walls move to create quarter or half gallery spaces) with halogen lighting.

The pre-function corridor in the Durham Convention Center is a main floor event space connected to the downtown Durham Marriott Hotel. The pre-function corridor is 296' long and 18' wide, with 14' ceilings. The main corridor has 10 light fixtures that define the exhibit areas with accompanying hanging hardware for one piece per fixture. The scale of the walls makes this appropriate for large 2-D work (up to 6' x 6', possibly larger). The Convention Center space also includes one smaller corridor that is appropriate for up to 2 medium-sized works. Exhibits in the Convention Center run for six months.

Who decides what exhibits are shown?

Every year, the Durham Arts Council issues a “Call for Artists” to solicit applications for solo exhibits in the Allenton and Semans galleries, and the Durham Convention Center pre-function corridor. The Ella Fountain Pratt Legacy Gallery is open to interested artists who have received Emerging Artist Grants—please contact Margaret DeMott, Director of Artist Services, at mdemott@durhamarts.org for more information. The 2020-2021 Call for Artists is now open – you may apply here

Selected artists will generally receive one entire gallery for solo exhibit. These galleries are frequently scheduled for special events and receptions. Because of this traffic, DAC will only consider two-dimensional works which can be hung on the walls. Although DAC does not endorse any restrictions on any particular artistic content, in making programming decisions the agency will consider the fact that all users of the building must pass through the gallery space as they enter. Artists may reside outside of North Carolina but must deliver/install and remove show.

For additional Durham Arts Council exhibit information contact Susan Tierney, Artist Services Manager, stierney@durhamarts.org.

The Durham Art Guild screens separately for solo exhibitions in the SunTrust Bank Gallery. More information on exhibiting in the Durham Art Guild’s gallery can be found at www.durhamartguild.org. The Durham Art Guild’s phone number is (919) 560–2713.

How do I apply for a solo exhibition?

The application for solo exhibits in the DAC Galleries for 2020–2021 is now open at www.callforentry.org. Apply directly to DAC Call for Artists here. The application platform used for DAC’s annual Call for Artists is www.callforentry.org. The site registration process is easy and free of charge. The application process for the call is also very straightforward and requires a minimal administration fee of $15. Artists are able to apply for calls for entry all over the world through this user-friendly site. If you have questions about the registration process, not answered on the site, please contact Susan Tierney at (919) 560-2719 or email stierney@durhamarts.org.

If you are an Emerging Artist Grant recipient who is interested in showing in the Ella Fountain Pratt Legacy Gallery, please contact Margaret DeMott at (919) 560-2720 or email mdemott@durhamarts.org.

What if I have an exhibit idea that is not a solo show?

The DAC will entertain proposals for exhibits other than solo shows (for example; a show that includes the work of several artists, a show based on a theme, a group or association show). We have a separate Proposal for Special Exhibits application (see top of page). The deadline for submitting special proposals is the same as for solo shows, and the application fee is $15.00.