Local Artist Showcase - New Bedford Whaling Museum

Local Artist Showcase

Local Artist Showcase

First Floor

Banner Image: (L-R) Works by artists Susan Mendyn, Roy Rossow, Milton Brighton, David Formanek, Hannah Robidoux

The New Bedford Whaling Museum proudly celebrates and showcases some of the talented artists of the region. The exhibition rotates regularly and is located on the first floor of the Museum. This is an area that is accessible for free, no admission required.

The New Bedford Whaling Museum supports Local Artists by exhibiting work in a large wall vitrine in Jacobs Family Gallery, a prominent location that is highly visible and free for visitors. The Museum promotes these exhibitions on its website and through our social media.

Now Accepting Local Artist Submissions

The New Bedford Whaling Museum now invites local artists to apply to have their work featured in our Local Artists Case!

We accept submissions on a rolling basis for three exhibition time frames:

  • January-April
  • May-August
  • September-December

Please refer to the FAQ below for more information and application requirements.

On View Now

Marine Heatwaves

Marine Heatwaves was created by visual artist Deb Ehrens in collaboration with Caroline Ummenhofer and Svenja Ryan, oceanographers who specialize in climate change from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution.

The project aims to bridge art and science, areas that often appear as opposite disciplines, but are revealed to share a common language. In the world of oceanography, marine heatwaves are a recently “discovered” phenomenon. As NOAA explains, “Marine heatwaves are periods of persistent anomalously warm ocean temperatures, which can have significant impacts on marine life as well as coastal communities and economies.” They are becoming more intense and more frequent.

Deb is an Elected Artist of the Art League of RI, Juried Artist Member of the Cape Cod Art Center, and Exhibiting Member of RI Center for Photographic Arts. A resident of Dartmouth, MA, Deb has been a solo and featured artist at galleries throughout the region and participated in numerous national juried exhibits. Her award-winning images are held in private and corporate collections.


Frequently Asked Questions

Who can apply?

Residents from Southeastern Massachusetts, including New Bedford, Acushnet, Fairhaven, Dartmouth, and Westport; artists with connections to the region, via attendance at UMass Dartmouth, Rhode Island School of Design, or past residence in the area.

How do I apply?

Please send the requested materials to the form below.

Please do not call or email to check on the status of your submission.

Do not bring physical art to the museum, as we cannot accept it, and it will not be considered.

What information do I need to provide in the application?

Submit the following (no more than 25 MB): images of the work(s); the title, medium, and dimensions; an artist’s statement; a short biography; and a CV, along with address, phone number, and email.

How are artists chosen?

Artists will be chosen based on the quality of the work, subject matter, and artist’s statement. The feasibility of the install will also carry weight.

What are the dimensions of the case?

The case height is 80 inches, the width is 68 inches, and the depth is 17 inches.

A glass shelf can be used or put at the bottom of the case. The depth of the glass shelf is 15 inches.

What are the display periods?
  • January-April
  • May-August
  • September-December
What kind of art can go in the case?

Various forms of artwork are accepted as long as they fit the case.

Examples include paintings, drawings, sculptures, textiles, jewelry, illustrated books, etc.

We cannot accept art with digital components that require an electrical outlet.

If chosen, will the museum acquire my artwork?

Please note that having your art selected for display does not mean that the museum will be adding it to the permanent collection and does not guarantee exhibiting with the museum in the future

Is there any financial help for chosen artists for things like framing and transport?

Artists chosen to display their work will be provided a modest participation honorarium to offset the costs incurred with the exhibition. 

Can I sell work displayed in the case?

Yes, you can sell your work, but the museum cannot complete the sale.

If you include your website or contact information on your label, interested public members can contact you.

Artist requirements

Transporting Art

Artists must be able to transport work to and from the museum.

Installation and deinstallation

Artists must be present to install and de-install their work and assist if possible.

If unable to assist, the museum must be informed beforehand to ensure enough staff members are on hand to install.

Layout Planning

The artist will provide museum staff a layout mock-up for the case at least two weeks before installation.

This can be illustrated (either by hand or using a computer program) or communicated in person to a staff member while the artist and staff member look at the case together.

The layout will be discussed and finalized before the installation date.

Materials and Hardware

The artist will list any needed materials and hardware for the installation at least two weeks before installation.

This can be discussed with staff if suggestions are needed. The museum will communicate if they have the materials or if the artist must provide them.

Loan Agreement

Artists must fill out a loan agreement provided by the museum ahead of time and sign it when bringing the works in for display.

This is to acknowledge that your works are under our care while they are here, and so we have a record of them being here


All non-3D works (i.e. paintings, prints, drawings) must be framed (except paintings that can be hung without a frame). The frame must either have a wire or be suitable for hanging on a nail.

D-rings are also acceptable.

  • Artists must provide, at minimum, two labels.
    • One label must contain a biography. The other must identify the works on view, at minimum, tombstone information: title of work, year, medium.
    • The biography label may also contain an artist’s statement, and the identifying label may also contain explanatory information about the artwork.
  • These labels should be provided to the museum for approval two weeks before the installation, with final labels agreed on one week prior.
  • The museum can print the labels up to 8 ½ x 11 inches in-house. The artist must print anything larger at their expense.
  • Artists can be provided with examples of a layout and acceptable labels if they request.

Apply Now

Local Artist Showcase 2024

Max. file size: 10 MB.
Drop files here or
Max. file size: 25 MB.