Momentum Applicant FAQs

Q: What do curators do?
A: There is always more artwork than there is space. So, we recruit opinionated, arts-educated people to select what they consider the best work. No committee members or OVAC staff are involved in the decision making so that the curators can look at the artwork without influence. Of course, this process is based on subjective judgments about the quality of artwork. The decisions must be subjective because it’s based on personal opinions about what makes good work. The curators always spend time with the work – looking at it and trying to understand it. Even artwork that one person loves might not resonate with another person.


Q: Who are the curators?
A: We always have different guest curators in order to get different perspectives. The 2022 Guest Curator for Momentum is Helen Opper. If you are interested in learning more about curating, we invite you to apply for the Emerging Curator position. Emerging Curators do not have to be 30 years of age or younger.


Q: What tips do you have to increase my chances of being selected?
A: Some things that help curators pick art could include: outstanding images of your artwork and good presentation (Does anything distract from your work such as distracting backgrounds, poor lighting, an over-sized signature or unfinished edges?).

Less tangible reasons why curators select artwork include things like: expressing a clear vision, comprehensible design elements, careful consideration of materials for concept, scale appropriate to idea, and original concepts or experimentation.


Q: Do you have any advice for how to take high quality images of my artwork at home and on a budget?

A: Yes! Momentum Co-Chair Aunj Braggs and OVAC's Programs & Media Assistant Lauren Fourcade put together a quick guide for photographing artwork at home. For more detailed tips, click the "Photographing Artwork 101" button at www.momentumoklahoma.org.


Q: Can I get specific comments on my work?
A: Because the curators have such limited time, we are not able to give detailed comments to artists who enter. We do encourage you to get feedback anywhere you can. Galleries, friends, other artists are great places to get feedback about your work and to see if you are communicating your ideas and concepts effectively.


Q: I've been chosen as an artist, and now I need help preparing my work for installation.

A: Every February, OVAC puts on an annual "Exhibition Ready" Artist Survival Kit workshop, and all Momentum artists may attend free of charge. Check back soon for more information.


Q: How did Momentum begin?
A: The Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition is a statewide non-profit organization that was created just to support artists. As one way to help and reward young artists, OVAC started Momentum in 2002 in Oklahoma City and in 2004 in Tulsa. A committee of volunteers helps to plan the event. The committee is made up of young artists and professionals who give their time to make the event happen. If you are interested in being involved in planning Momentum, you can email your interest to programs@ovac-ok.org. Momentum does cost money to put together and funds come from financial sponsors, ticket sales, percentages of art sales and grant money raised by OVAC and its committee members.


Q: Why does this exhibition have an age limit of 30 years old?
A: This exhibition was created specifically to promote and bring together young artists. The Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition has programs that support artists at many different stages of their careers– from funding to exhibits. It is important to us that our programs help artists as they are getting started, restarted, or continuing already successful careers. We also consider it important that our programs do not duplicate things other organizations are doing. Thus, we do not put together exhibitions unless they fill a completely different need.

We have other programs that provide visibility and funding for artists of all ages, emerging and established, throughout the year. If you aren’t eligible for Momentum, please look at our other exhibitions such as Art 365, Concept, 24 Works on Paper, and funding sources: grants and fellowships, and other programs for promoting artists: Art Focus Oklahoma, the Virtual Gallery, and the Tulsa Art Studio Tour.