The Annual Exhibitions are open to members only. If you're not a member but would like to join us, please read more!
 Miniature Shows
We are grateful for the Johnston and Urbandale Library to host our miniature shows. Once the pandemic is over we will be hosting these shows again. 

Iowa Watercolor Society Annual Exhibit Prospectus


Eligibility – Review these Requirements Carefully:
1. IWS Members Only (visit iowawatercolorsocietyorg to become a member)

2. Original Artwork Only
    2a. Only done by you

    2b. No copies of others artwork
    2c. No work completed in workshops or with an instructor
    2d. No copies of published photos

3. Recent Work
    3a. Create in the last two years
    3b. Not previously shown in an IWS show

4. Medium Restrictions
    4a. Watercolor paint only
    4b. Only removable resists used
    4c. Standard watercolor paper only
    4d. Preliminary sketching only – not used for shading of any kind
    4e. Only transparent watercolor paint can be used in paintings to be considered for   the “Transparent Watercolor Award.” No opaque watercolors and no gouache.
         See definitions

         here: http://www.watercolors.org/anexplanationoftransparency.html

5. Presentation - Chosen art will only be exhibited if the below requirements are met
   5a. Mat board must only be White or Off-White 
   5b. Thin color liner is acceptable
   5c. Maximum frame size not to exceed 46” x 33”
   5d. A sturdy wire hanger must be attached to the back of the frame and art must be ready to hang
   5e. Paintings must be protected by non-breakable acrylic (i.e. plexiglass).  Glass is not acceptable

Non-compliance with eligibility requirements may result in works being disqualified. 




1. Each artist may submit 1 or 2 paintings.

2. The photograph of your artwork must be of the unframed, unmated image. Use filtered natural light, as flash may be too harsh.


3. The painting’s photo orientation must be correct. The top of the painting must be up when the image is opened (not upside down or laying on its side).

4. Make sure your image is its best. Your image will be used for initial jurying, and for publicity throughout the following year.


5. File format must be in .jpg format

    5a. No other formats will be accepted
    5b. No larger than 500kb in size


6. Saved image file 

    6a. Rename Image:  Title of painting Artist last name First name.jpg
    6b. Images not renamed will not be submitted for consideration

    6c. Example: Big Barn Jones Jane.jpg


Cash, gift certificates, and additional awards. The Juror will select both cash and honorable mention awards. Award jurying will be from actual paintings. The judge’s decisions are final.
There is a special award category for transparent watercolor paintings. Check the “Yes” box by “Transparent Watercolor Only” in the entry form to be entered. Only transparent watercolor paint can be used in paintings to be considered for the “Transparent Watercolor Award.” No opaque watercolors and no gouache.

All sales will be handled by the artist. LaPoste, Inc. or the Iowa Watercolor Society will not take any commissions from the sale. Paintings are to be sold at the price stated by the artist on the entry form. If not for sale, check NFS on the entry. Paintings are not insured by LaPoste, Inc. or the Iowa Watercolor Society. It is at the discretion of the artist to provide their own insurance. Traveling show sales are handled by the artist and the paintings sold must continue in the traveling show until the conclusion of the final exhibition of the traveling show.

No substitutions are permitted after the selections have been made by the judge.
Iowa Watercolor Society will assume the privilege of photographing, using any submission photos of paintings, or paintings entered in the exhibition for the purpose of publicity or reproduction in the exhibition catalog, the IWS website, the IWS Facebook page or other IWS social media pages. LaPoste, Inc. and the Iowa Watercolor Society reserve the right to reject any work that arrives damaged. All accepted paintings are eligible to be selected for the traveling show, and if chosen, are required to travel to the conclusion of the final exhibition.

Accepted artists will be notified by email. Instructions for shipping, hand delivery, and return of accepted artwork will be included.


Award-winning entries and other chosen work will be placed in the Traveling Show. 

The present year's Exhibition art pieces and the prior year's Traveling Show art must be claimed on 9/22/19.  All unclaimed art becomes the property of the Iowa Watercolor Society and will be disposed of as necessary. 

past exhibits 

2017 Annual Exhibition

2016 Annual Exhibition

2015 Annual Exhibition

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latest update on 1/4/19