We hope these answers below help but if you still have other questions, please message us using our contact form.

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What is Art Week?

A week of projects and art events designed to lift up the local arts community in Des Moines.

What’s the history of Art Week Des Moines?

The first one happened in 2014. David Safris was inspired by a visit to Art Basel in Miami. There, he saw how the local community activated around the art fair and imagined how we could do something similar in Des Moines leading up to the Des Moines Arts Festival. The first year their were seven events and over the years it’s grown to host 40-80 events and hundreds of artists during the week.

Who can participate in Art Week?

Anyone. Everyone. Art Week is designed as an open call for any artist wanting to participate. Businesses and nonprofits wanting to host and support artists work are also welcome. Events range to serve a variety of interests, ages and backgrounds.

What kinds of events happen during Art Week?

  • Open Studios
  • Pop Ups
  • Gallery Exhibitions
  • Live Performances
  • Interactive Installations
  • Community based projects
  • Opportunities to make art

Can I host / organize a music / comedy / poetry / etc event?

Absolutely. The more reasons people have to visit a neighborhood, the more everyone benefits.

I want to participate, but where do I start?

  • Artists can
    • Organize and promote their own event/project
    • Ask to join an existing event.
    • Check out these opportunities.
    • Collaborate on a community project
    • Pitch a partnership with a local business
  • Businesses & Nonprofits can
    • Invite your workplace/business to host and sponsor an artist. If you don’t know an artist, join the art week planning facebook group, Ham Sandwich and post your interest in hosting. You can also note you are looking for an artist when you register to participate in Art Week.
  • Everyone can
    • Explore Art Week by discovering new-to-you artists and spaces. We’ll have a calendar with all the information leading up to Art Week. Check back here in June.
    • Financially support an artist’s project. Fiscal sponsors available for your support to become a tax deduction. Message us if you want more information about connecting with a project.

Where can I register my event, activity, or show?

Under the “For Artists” heading on this webpage, create a new user account. After you register, you can add/edit your event under the “For Artists” heading. Events are pending until approved by admin.

What are registered events responsible for?

  • Promoting your event
  • Getting info registered the deadline, extended to May 15th.
  • Documentation: It’s a good to consider making your own plan for documentation.
  • Filing for any required permits
  • Supplying your own liability insurance

What is Group Creative’s Role in Art Week?

  • Promote Art Week as a whole by featuring registered artists, events, and activities that provide images and graphics by the registration deadline, extended to May 15th
  • Build community support and coordinate neighborhood integration
  • Facilitate neighborhood communication as needed

How are the neighborhoods selected?

Feedback from previous Art Weeks reflected a desire for a concentration of  happenings within a smaller geographical footprint. By partnering with Invest DSM, The Avenues and the Historical Valley Junction Foundation we can generate focal points of activity throughout Art Week.

What if my event is not located in the designated neighborhood of a certain day?

Your event is still welcome to be included for Art Week. Just make sure you register by the deadline.

Is there funding available from Art Week?

While we’d love to fund everyone, there is not currently general funding to request or apply for. Artists are encouraged to seek out funding to support their Art Week ideas.

What is Ham Sandwich?

  • An artist-centric facebook group that can be used to connect and share resources for Art Week project planning and beyond.
  • It’s private to help keep away the bots. Feel free to invite artists you know in the community to join and benefit from the space.
  • Link to join here>