An open call for artist submissions

The FaFa Gallery will be hosting its first ever juried art show.

The art show will coincide with Midland Community Theater’s opening musical for the 2021 season and will be in the main lobby of MCT located at 2000 West Wadley in Midland, TX. The exact dates are to be determined by the theater staff but are typically between late January and mid-March.

The judge/jury of this event will be the gallery owner, Jeff Neely (and probably his wife).

There are no entry fees and anybody is welcome to submit an entry. (or two, or three, or….) 


  • All work must be in a medium that requires no glass. 
  • All work must be on a 2 foot by 3 foot  by 1.5 inch canvas that is stretched. (If you watch for sales, they can usually be acquired at Hobby Lobby for about $12.)
    • The gallery will provide a floating frame for each accepted entry. The frame will remain with the work when the show is complete and art is returned to the owner. 

Note: Exceptions to the specified rules above will be made on an individual basis. Please reach out directly to the gallery owner, Jeff, to discuss your ideas as you create your work.

  • All work must contain the message “I survived” or “we survived” in some clear, legible manner.
  • All work must be original and unique to the artist who created it.
  • Prizes:
    • Categories for judging will be defined at a later date and tchotchkes will be given for prestige and bragging rights. 
  • Deadlines:
    • All submissions must be given to the gallery by December 1, 2020 in order to allow time for framing. Don’t wait for the deadline, if the submission is ready, then the earlier the better. Work with The Gallery and The Gallery will work with you.
  • Sales:
    • Sales will be handled by the gallery. Should a sale occur, MCT takes a commission of 30% and the gallery will take $50 to help pay for the frame. If no sale occurs, the frame still remains with the art work.
    • Taxes and any other expenses (such as shipping if the art cannot be moved in person) will be the responsibility of the artist.

The Show being put on will require a sense of cohesion. The identical frames will tie the artwork together and the unified message of hope and survival will provide a sense cohesion throughout. It is the aim of the gallery to put on a show that is overwhelming in its size, scope, excellence in artistry, and impactfulness. It should make people happy.

As the show will be in a family friendly location, it is requested that the usual boundaries that implies be respected. 

This is an opportunity for you, the artist, to demonstrate your skill, artistry, and creativity by applying your own internal and personal filter to the changing world we are experiencing in real time today. Coronavirus is omnipresent, sure, but it is only a catalyst for the changing times around us and that change, and what it means or how it is experienced, is a personal thing to each individual. The breadth and depth of all of it on display, as captured in the images you create, will unite it all into the shared experiences we are all having. This is the recipe for a potentially great show.

As this is the first show The FaFa Gallery is putting on, I am certain that there will be things I missed, hadn’t thought of, will need to research, could use some guidance on, will need to clarify, etc… I, Jeff, am very easy to work with and quite easy to get along with, I am exceptionally supportive of artists and the arts community, and I highly encourage phone calls at any time. I have procured what is historically a very good wall for this show and I really want to take a person’s breath away with their experience.

If the show gets tremendous response and an opportunity presents itself, it may be recreated in another location and you will have the opportunity to have your work seen by a larger audience. 

To indicate interest, seek clarity, ask questions, or simply introduce yourself, please reach out to Jeff at the gallery by phone at 432-689-3004, by email at, or on facebook @thefafagallery. 

To a memorable show….

Questions I have been asked:

  • Is there an age limit?
    • Good art is good art regardless of who made it, how old they were, etc... 
  • Are photographs allowed?
    • As a general thumbrule, I, the owner of the gallery, am not impressed by photographs or prints. You will very rarely see something in the gallery that  is either. That said, I also can recognize and appreciate excellence when I see it. I am not giving a hard no, but I am being clear that the bar is pretty high on some artforms. Fair enough?
  • Do I have to provide a statement to go along with the art? 
    • If it has to be explained, it is not good art. It is my profound belief that the art should always stand on its own. 
  • Do you really want people to reach out to you? 
    • Yes. I am putting on an art show, not an art contest or display. If the art community takes a shine to this idea and collaborates on the show, then great success will be more likely to follow. While there will be art on display, the key to getting elevated above an art display to an art show will be the personal, communal involvement being able to freely reach out to me will provide. Plus, I get really excited and have a true love for what I am doing and that can be rather infectious to most people. 
  • Is there a limit to the number of submissions? 
    • No. Because of the requirements for entry, all work will have to be created between now and the show deadline and it will likely all have to be brand new as the challenge is pretty specific. If an artist creates 10 works from scratch in the next few months for this show, then only allowing a couple for consideration would be possibly short-sheeting the quality of the show. Understand that submission is not the same as acceptance into the show.
  • What do you mean by an opportunity to display in more locations?
    • If another gallery or museum would like to display the show in a different location, that would be pretty stoney.   
  • Can art be sold?
    • Yes. In fact, sales are highly encouraged and the location for this show is historically good in this regard.
  • Are you certain about a specific size as a 2 foot by 3 foot canvas will likely scare many away?
    • One should not look at this as a large canvas to fill but look at it instead as 6 square feet of wall space to show off in. What you do with that 6 square feet and  how you utilize it is up to you, the artist. If you need help with ideas on how to do so, feel free to call the gallery.
  • What if paint is wet?
    • Every bit of the art accepted will be treated gently and taken care of, but, work that is unfinished should be considered enter at your own risk. 

A painting by Sybil.

Some Ideas to get the creative juices flowing

I have been asked if it is absolutely a requirement that the prescribed words be included in the work. Yes, I actually want to see the creativity that comes out of the requirement but I will also accept anything in the spirit of those words. That said, I am not an artist at all but I took a couple of pictures and edited them slightly to demonstrate some ideas. If further discussion is required, feel free to reach out to the gallery. I hope this helps...


I took this photo in New Mexico May 2020. I then edited the sign on the computer. 

I was struck by this moment of a beautiful morning with the sun coming up and the clouds lifting off the mountain in the background. It was my first venture out since the world ended and this moment felt like a relief to me.

In this one I did not use the exact words, but "you made it" is in the proper spirit and is the type of thing I will not turn away.


 I took this photograph in Colorado on the same trip and then added the address and the flag. 

There is a lot of signs of life in this photo and I liked the sense of humor on display on the side of the highway. 


This billboard had a sign offering free advertising so I called the number, said hello to Tony, and the fine owner of this billboard made this display. The photo is not good because it made the billboard look broken and the photographer had no idea how to solve such a dilemma. 

That said, I thought about how cool it would be if the city building windows were lit up to make the message so I added the words across the town. For a complete amateur, this turned out pretty cool.


There are a couple of ideas. I hope this helps and I look forward to sharing the outcome of your inspiration with the world. 

Thank you, and good painting...