It's hard to believe, but this year ArtPrize will be four years old.  WOW!

Rick DeVos created the event in 2009, so 2012 will be the fourth ArtPrize.  It has become a spectacular success.  And, this year promises to be bigger than ever.

With venue registration closing last Thursday, it looks as if there will be a total of 195 possible venues this September.  A total of 34 offices, pubs, parks and museums are new this year, too.

Now, the registration for ArtPrize 2012 artists, competing for total of $560,000 in prize money, begins 10 days from now to April 23.

ArtPrize 2012 will have seven Exhibition Centers, each with at least 25 works of art plus such amenities as merchandise, and registration for viewers who want to help select the 10 works that will share in prize money, including the first-place $200,000 prize.

New Exhibition Centers will include the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum and Kendall College of Art and Design.

Five returning Exhibition Centers will be the Grand Rapids Art Museum, Grand Rapids Public Museum, St. Cecilia Music Center, Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts plus Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park.

ArtPrize is adding new Showcase Venues, which will provide some amenities but not all that Exhibition Centers will. Cathedral Square and Women’s City Club, both Exhibition Centers last year, will participate as Showcase Venues in ArtPrize 2012.

Also,  SiTE:LAB @ 54 Jefferson in the old Grand Rapids Public Museum Building at 54 Jefferson SE. SiTE:LAB participated as a venue last year in the former Junior Achievement Building at the corner of Fulton  and Division.

It is still possible that the final figure of 195 registered venues will change. To participate in ArtPrize, a venue must secure a relationship with at least one artist during Connections period, which also opens April 23 and continues through June 14.

I can't wait for September!