MEGA 2017

Photography by Matt Gubancsik. Michigan Emerging Graduate Artist Juried Exhibition.


Michigan Emerging Graduate Artists (MEGA) is an annual juried exhibition of works by artists who are currently enrolled in graduate level study, or are current-year graduates of an undergraduate program, at one of Michigan’s academic institutions. MEGA is organized by the Kendall College of Art and Design graduate student association, The Masters. In 2017, the seventh installment of the annual show will be presented at the Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts, and will be juried by Heather Duffy, UICA Exhibition Curator, Elizabeth Chodos – Executive and Creative Director at Ox-Bow School of Art and Artists’ Residency, and Taylor Renee Aldridge, Assistant Curator of contemporary art at The Detroit Institute of Arts and the Co-founder of Arts.Black.

New in 2017, MEGA offers the opportunity to showcase site-responsive and installation-based projects, as well as two-dimensional and three-dimensional works. Proposed projects may activate specific spaces within the galleries (described in PDF linked below), but there is no requirement for works to respond to the site. Applicants with site-specific works are encouraged to submit proposals for multiple exhibition locations. All graduate students and graduating undergraduate seniors in the state of Michigan are invited to apply. The 2017 MEGA artists have a unique opportunity this year, as the exhibition will be presented alongside US IS THEM, artworks from the Pizzuti Collection: an exciting exhibition of work by 42 international contemporary artists including Nick Cave, Zhang Huan, Kehinde Wiley, Kara Walker, and Wangetchi Mutu.



chodos_016-smallElizabeth Chodos

Elizabeth is interested in creative and enterprising arts administration projects and practices, and moonlights as a creative writer and independent curator. She is currently the Executive and Creative Director at Ox-Bow School of Art and Artists’ Residency, and was formerly Executive Director and Board member at threewalls in Chicago. She currently serves on the board of the Alliance of Artists’ Communities. She is co-founder of Common Field, a national alliance of artist-centered visual arts platforms and their produces. Chodos received a Dual Masters degree from the departments of Art History, Theory and Criticism, and Arts Administration from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and her Bachelors of Arts in Creative Writing, from Sarah Lawrence College.

Heather Duffy

Heather is an artist from the Mississippi Gulf coast and is the exhibitions curator at the Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts (UICA) in Grand Rapids, MI.  Prior to her appointment at UICA, Heather worked as the exhibitions manager for ArtPrize, in academic and commercial art galleries, and as an independent curator presenting exhibitions of contemporary art in Dallas, New York, Michigan and throughout the American southeast.  She exhibits her studio work regionally and nationally, and holds an MFA in painting from Kendall College of Art and Design

taylor-renee-aldridge-croppedTaylor Renee Aldridge
Taylor is an arts writer and curator based in Detroit, Michigan. Taylor works to investigate the intersections of equity, race and culture in an outside of cultural institutions. This is often carried out through writing essays, curating, facilitating public programs, and working as an advisory to a variety of projects. In 2014, she co-founded ARTS.BLACK with Jessica Lynne, an online publication for art criticism from Black perspectives, predicated on the belief that art criticism should be an accessible dialogue – a tool through which we question, celebrate and talk back to the global world of contemporary art.

Taylor received her M.L.A from Harvard University with a concentration in Museum Studies. She received her B.A from Howard University with a concentration in Art History and Business Administration. Taylor has worked at the The Ethelbert Cooper Gallery of African & African American Art (Harvard University), and has been awarded with the Goldman Sachs Junior Fellowship at The National Museum of American History (Smithsonian Institutions).


  • Eligibility requirements: all graduate-level students currently enrolled in a graduate program in the state of Michigan, as well as seniors graduating in the 2016/2017 academic year from a Michigan undergraduate program, may submit work.
  • Artists may submit up to three individual works.
  • Fees: the application fee is $30.
  • Entries are made via Slideroom. Click “ENTRY FORM” below to apply.
  • Image Entry
    • Entry is by online submission only- no slides, print outs, or actual work.
    • Images must be in JPG format, highest quality, 1024 pixels on the longest side, 72 dpi.
    • Image files should be labeled with the following information: Last name, first initial, underscore, 1, 2, or 3 (example: SmithJ_1.jpg).
    • Artists must submit one image of each entry. Additional detail views may be included if the artworks need further representation.
  • Artists must include an artists statement (1,000 characters or less, around 200 words) supporting their work.
  • There is no size limit to the works, but they may not exceed 75lbs if they are to be hung. All accepted 2-D works must be ready to hang. No exposed glass, clip frames, or sawtooth hangers will be permitted. Artwork must be dry upon delivery. Works that do not meet these requirements will not be accepted. Please email with questions regarding display of 3-D work or installation.
  • LIABILITY: Kendall College of Art and Design will be responsible for works on its premises but not for works delivered in damaged condition or left after September 1st, 2017. For artwork to be covered by KCAD’s insurance policy, an insurance value must be listed.


  • Completed Entry Form via Slideroom(online submission is required)
  • Fee paid online via Slideroom
  • Digital Images formatted as directed and uploaded in Slideroom, or linked video/interactive work referenced on the entry form.


All work accepted for the exhibition must arrive ready to install. Works not gallery-ready, or not exhibiting good craftsmanship, may be omitted from the exhibit. Accepted work that differs significantly from the entry images or suffers from poor presentation, will be disqualified. Please note that professional-level presentation and craftsmanship is a must. Work may be hand delivered or shipped. Shipped works must be sent in an easily reusable container/packaging with return shipping prepaid. Works will be returned in the same manner as delivered or via UPS/FedEx/USPS. All work must arrive at the UICA by the specified date (see calendar below). Accepted work will remain on display for the duration of the exhibition. Works not claimed within 30 days of the end of the exhibit will become the property of Kendall College of Art and Design. The artists are responsible for all shipping costs to and from the gallery.


Feb 6                         Call Deadline
Feb 27                       Notify Artists
March 6                    Deadline for selected artists to accept invitation
March 26                 Artwork due to UICA by this date*
April 8                       Opening
April 8 – July 31      Show Duration
July 31 – Aug 6        Deinstall/Pick-up of hand delivered works

*Selected artists will be notified of specific dates and times available for drop off of works.

Direct questions or concerns to Emily Mayo at

Please feel free to share and forward this information. The success of this exhibit will rely largely on sharing.