Emerging Iowa Artists

The Des Moines Arts Festival® features a unique opportunity for visual artists who are Iowa residents and currently enrolled in an institution of higher education. The Emerging Iowa Artist Program presented by Principal Financial Group® , offers new artists the opportunity to showcase their talent at one of the nation's most decorated arts festivals.

Iowa residents currently enrolled in or recently graduated (within one year) from a university, college or art school anywhere in the U.S. are eligible to apply to the Emerging Iowa Artists (EIA) program. This program provides individuals the opportunity to promote their talents and sell their artwork at the Des Moines Arts Festival®. It also provides opportunities to artists beginning their careers.

Artists can participate in the EIA program for two years (either consecutively or non-consecutively). Because of financial support from Principal Financial Group® , this program is free to qualified artists. There is no charge to submit images for the jury or for booth space once the work is accepted by the jury.

Qualified artists are required to apply to the show in the same manner as professional artists and submit their work in accordance to the specifications. All applicants are required to provide at the time of application proof of residency and enrollment. All work submitted is juried by the same jury. The Festival jury will select the emerging artists separately from the Festival artists. And in June, the Awards Jury will jury all participating artists and award an emerging artist a $1,000 Best of Show Award for the Best Student Artist.

Each year the Des Moines Arts Festival® attracts over 200,000 patrons. We are excited to offer the public this opportunity to discover Iowa's up-and-coming young talent.


Sponsored by:


Emily Baxter

Karen Doty

Liz Fisher

Chelsea Gambrel

Allison Harbaugh

Nick LaPole

Sarah Lokenvitz

Jose Marentes-Gonzales

Tyler Morford

Zora Murff

Jacob Putnam

Kara Schlabaugh




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