Norman Arts Council will make its artist opportunities — as well as others made open to Norman-based artists — available to view here. Check back periodically for new and updated listings!


40 Over 40: Women Artists of Oklahoma

DUE: 11:59 p.m. Monday, September 30, 2019

The Norman Arts Council is seeking submissions from women artists in Oklahoma who are over the age of 40 for an exhibit celebrating the wealth of talent by experienced visual, women artists across the State.

Submissions are welcomed by visual artists in any medium who:

  • Identify as a woman

  • Live in or have lived in Oklahoma

  • Are over the age of 40

This is a juried exhibition and selected artists will be notified by October 31, 2019

Exhibition Dates: February 14, 2020 – March 14, 2020

Location: MAINSITE Contemporary Art, Norman, OK 73069

40 pieces by 40 different artists will be selected for the exhibit. Artists may submit up to five (5) pieces for consideration. Multiple pieces in a series may be submitted as one work (for example: a set of jewelry, a set of ceramics, a diptych or triptych, etc.)

All selected work must be delivered to MAINSITE between January 14 and January 31, 2020. Work must be delivered ready to exhibit with proper hardware attached and/or any other custom exhibition/display materials required for support.

Work in the exhibit may be for sale. Please indicate on your checklist the sales price of the work. The Norman Arts Council will retain 30% of all art sales.

Unsold work must be picked up by April 14, 2020.

Deadline to submit is September 30, 2019


Call for Concrete/Visual Poetry


The ways in which we read our world are changing. The ways in which we read text and images are changing—the reading brain itself is changing. Reading—viewing—now gleans information at lightspeed—breaking news updates, Google headlines, emails, tweets, Instagram, incessant chat and text messages. Where does this deluge of text and moving image lead us? What does it leave us?

Theme: “Concrete/Visual Poetry in the 21st Century”

All received works will be exhibited December 13, 2019 through January 10, 2020 at MAINSITE Contemporary Art

Send 1-2 works* to Crag Hill at
5104 Cypress Lake Drive, Norman, OK 73072 

The work is to be kept by the curator and will not be returned or available for sale.

*Books and other publications will also be welcome and will be displayed and then donated to high school creative writing and art classes in the area. 

O. Gail Poole Memorial Travel Award

The 2019 winners will be announced soon!

2018 Winners: Mayumi Kiefer and Solomon Mahlatini

Oklahoma artists Mayumi Kiefer and Solomon Mahlatini will have their travels to Utah and Mexico City, respectively, to further their artistic practices funded in part through the Norman Arts Council-administered O. Gail Poole Memorial Travel Fund. 

The award began in 2014 as a means to honor the late Norman painter O. Gail Poole, a longtime proponent of seeing the world to inform your art and career therein. Since 2014, Oklahoma artists Marwin Begaye, Douglas Shaw Elder, Sarah Engel-Barnett, Skip Hill, Debby Kaspari, Liz Roth, Craig Swan and Holly Wilson have been able to travel to conferences, retreats and journeys of inspiration across the world because of awards from the fund, spreading Oklahoma’s creativity to others in the process.

Ceramic pieces of Kiefer made with the Ittekoi Kiln

Ceramic pieces of Kiefer made with the Ittekoi Kiln

Mayumi Kiefer is a Norman-based ceramic artist who has exhibited and had residencies in Japan, France, Ohio, Utah, Oklahoma and more. With the Japanese designer’s approval, Kiefer built the first Ittekoi kiln outside of Japan at the University of Oklahoma and will use the award to travel to Price, Utah to construct another kiln at Utah State University Eastern, aimed to help build community, advance ceramics studies and jumpstart at stagnant economy in the eastern portion of the state. 

The Ittekoi Kiln is a modern kiln at the Shigaraki Ceramic Cultural Park located in Shiga, Japan, and one of six such ancient kilns of Japan. Kiefer previously held a residency at Shigaraki, which is how she came to build one at the University of Oklahoma. 

The constructed kiln will be utilized in programming offered by The Arts Center in Utah, which includes significant outreach to local public schools in the region where government spending on the arts is near zero. 



Mahlatini is a talented artist who has shown in exhibitions in in Florida, Georgia, Michigan, New York, California, Oklahoma and Washington D.C.. Born in Harare, Zimbabwe and now studying at East Central University in Ada, Mahlatini will use his travel award to visit Mexico City, home to the Frida Kahlo Museum (memorializing one of his biggest artistic inspirations) and a number of other world-class museums and galleries. 

Sexuality, race and tyranny are the themes most often explored his Mahlatini’s work, though visually expressed through the cultural traits and practices that he absorbed from his time growing up in Zimbabwe. He sees similar cultural traits in the artistic history of the Chickasaw Nation — headquartered in his college town — as well as in Mexican culture. In addition to a dose of inspiration, Mahlatini aims to explore the universalities and parallels of all three respective cultures and how that translation towards artistic expression. 

The O. Gail Poole Memorial Travel Fund will open up with applications for more artists to apply for a travel award in Spring 2020. 


2018: Mayumi Kiefer and Solomon Mahlatini
2017: Marwin Begaye and Holly Wilson
2016: Sarah Engel-Barnett and Liz Roth
2015: Douglas Shaw Elder and Skip Hill
2014: Debby Kaspari and Craig Swan


Call for Artists/Curators

The Norman Arts Council is seeking artists and curators to conceive of exhibitions in its home, MAINSITE Contemporary Art in the heart of the Walker Arts District | Downtown Norman. We have four exhibition slots available per year, each running for 6-8 weeks. We are accepting proposals for the entire space or half of the space. MAINSITE's main gallery is booked generally up to two years in advance. 

Gallery Highlights:

  • Beautiful contemporary space in renovated building over 100 years old

  • 4,000 square feet of exhibition space

  • 14 foot ceilings

  • Floor to ceiling glass front onto Main Street

  • Can be divided into 2-4 distinct exhibition spaces with moveable walls

  • Full time gallery staff on site Tuesday through Saturday

  • Projection capabilities

  • Staff to assist with install

  • Full use of Norman Arts Council PR and Mailing List for promotion of exhibit

If you are interested in an exhibition in the main gallery of MAINSITE Contemporary Art, please email Erinn Gavaghan at with a fully written exhibition proposal, including an exhibition narrative, artist statement, CV, examples of previous work and any other relevant information. 

The Library Gallery

Our Mission: The Library Gallery is a smaller space within MAINSITE Contemporary Art to exhibit experimental and cutting edge work from emerging artists.

Call for Artists/Curators:
The Library Gallery and Water Closet Gallery is always accepting proposals from emerging artists and curators. We have an active and ongoing process of working with artists to collaborate and create the best fit exhibitions. The Library Gallery includes approximately 50 feet of exhibition space, including the office just off the main gallery. Exhibitions may be expanded out to include one wall of the foyer between the Main Gallery and Library Gallery and/or the gallery’s courtyard, depending on availability.

If you are interested in an exhibition at MAINSITE Contemporary Art, please email Joshua Boydston at with a fully written exhibition proposal, including an exhibition narrative, artist statement, CV, examples of previous work and any other relevant information. 


Norman Arts Council is aware of no other art opportunities for Norman artists at this time. If you are an organization or business who would like theirs listed here, please contact Joshua Boydston