Call for Entries – Accepting Applications from May 25 - July 6,2020

As a health care organization, the safety of our constituents is our highest priority. While our commitment to Art Ability remains strong, in light of the current pandemic, we have decided to pivot the annual Preview Reception and Dinner & Auction events to a virtual format. As we celebrate Art Ability's 25th year, we invite you to join us for the livestream virtual Kick-Off Party on Saturday, November 7, 2020. The annual exhibit and sale will be on display at Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital in Malvern, PA from November 8, 2020 – January 31,2021 and will be open to the public based on current visitor policies.

Deadline for Entries:
Monday, July 6, 2020

Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital’s Art Ability program accepts entries for the annual international juries exhibition and sale of art and fine crafts by artists with disabilities from mid-April to mid-June each year. For more information or to be added to our mailing list please contact the Art Ability office at 484.596.5607 or email


Open to artists with physical, cognitive, visual and hearing disabilities. Only work created after the onset of a disability or injury, as well as created in the last five years, is eligible. All works must be for sale. Art previously exhibited in Art Ability is not eligible for submission. Original work only; reproduction prints will not be accepted.


  • Acceptable media – Painting (Acrylic, Oil, Watercolor, Gouache, Tempera, etc.); Drawing & Fine Printmaking (Pencil, Charcoal, Crayon, Pastel, Ink, Marker, Woodblock, Etching, Silkscreen, etc.); Photography (Analog or Digital); Mixed Media (2-Dimensional: Collage, Mosaic, Fiber Art, etc.); Sculpture (must weigh under 25 lbs.); Jewelry, Fine Crafts & Functional Art
  • Size – No dimension should be less than 13” or more than 48” including the frame. Each piece is not to exceed 25 lbs. in weight.
  • Finishing – Any works selected by judges must be sent ready for display. All flat works may require appropriate framing and hanging hardware. Presentation guidelines:
    • All works on paper, cardboard, foamcore, scratchboard, flimsy materials and/or delicate surfaces must be protected with sturdy Plexiglas and framed. Plexiglas and proper wiring is required for all framing. No glass will be accepted.
    • Frames must be used to protect soft and/or sharp edges. All flat works that are metal, ceramic, or any delicate materials, as well as those that use Plexiglas, must be framed.
    • Unframed wrap-around canvas must be on stretcher bars no smaller than 2” wide. Unfinished or sloppy edges will not be accepted.
    • All wall art must be properly wired for hanging. Saw teeth, French cleats, nail holes and nail rings will not be accepted.
  • Stipulations – Work that arrives damaged will be returned to artist. We are not financially responsible if it arrives damaged.

Sales and liability

Artists earn 80 percent of the sales of exhibited work, multiples and those commissioned in the 12-week show. Unsold works are returned after the exhibit closes. Artists may be invited to take part in Art Ability’s ongoing sales and exhibition programs. A consignment agreement would then be sent for artist approval. For work sold during Art Ability’s ongoing sales and exhibition programs, artists receive 60 percent of the sales. All payments are made by check in U.S. dollars after the close of the exhibition. By applying to this exhibition, permission is granted to allow Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital (BMRH) to photograph, publicize and reproduce the works submitted for the show, in whole or in part, for various types of publicity, educational or public relations purposes or otherwise for the hospital’s benefit. This right is perpetual and non-royalty bearing.

Review and notification

Review of online submissions will be conducted by a jury of art professionals and the exhibition curator. Artists whose work is accepted will be asked to send actual work at the expense of Art Ability or, if more convenient, to personally deliver the work to our Malvern location, by appointment. We reserve the right to final selection for the exhibition upon arrival of the work. More shipping details will be mailed to accepted artists. Artists will be notified of preliminary acceptance in August 2020. Artists whose work has not been selected will also be notified by email.

Judging and awards process

Distinguished members of the Greater Philadelphia arts community award prizes in each media category. Each accepted work is eligible for prizes of up to $1,000 per piece. More than $7,000 in prizes will be awarded.

Artist statement

Please provide an artist statement that will be used on an artwork label, printed on a small placard (3x5) and displayed with your work. Due to the size limitation this statement should be no longer than 125 words and should include the following information:

  • A brief description of yourself and your art (mediums, techniques, subjects, etc.)
  • Your source of inspiration and motivation to create
  • The role art has played in your life in living with your disability or impairment

If you were an exhibiting artist in the 2019 Exhibition, please review your artist statement (PDF). We have attached the statements from those artists whose work was displayed in last year’s show. If your statement is included in the attachment and you feel it is still responsive to the requested information, simply indicate that you want us to use the statement on file.

We no longer request that your resume or professional art biography be submitted with your application.


Each artist should submit work through the CaFE™ website: Interested artists are required to create a free CaFE profile to apply. There is no entry fee for the Art Ability call, and artist profiles can be created and saved for future use. Artists with saved profiles should check to confirm contact information is still accurate.

Applicants are invited to submit up to six (6) separate works of art for consideration, uploading one (1) JPEG (.jpg) image of each to the CaFE site. If necessary, a detail may be uploaded as one of the six. Images must be uploaded to the artist’s profile prior to completing a call for entry. Applications also require title of work, medium, size, year completed, and price. Be sure the size and selling price is a reflection of the artwork framed. Refer to specific finishing guidelines under the Eligibility section of this document.

Also consider submitting one of your six works of art (any media) to reflect our theme this year. The 2020 theme is “Celebration.” To be included for consideration in the theme category at judging, please title your work “Celebration: followed by the title of your work,” for example “Celebration: Sunshine.” In the description field, include a description of your work and why it reflects Celebration.

Depending on a variety of factors, the online submission process may take up to two hours to prepare images and submit the application. Applicants are strongly urged to allow time for any unforeseen technical difficulties. Applications can be saved and updated at any time prior to the submission deadline of June 28, 2020.

Art centers and groups: A separate profile and valid email address is required for each submitting artist. Each artist’s submissions should reflect the person’s individual creativity. Multiple renditions of the same subject matter, such as a class assignment, will not be accepted. Please include the name and address of the art center or group on application.

Using the CaFE system

  • Go to
  • Register on CaFE to create a username and password that allows you to save information and return to it at any time.
  • Create an artist portfolio by inputting art information and uploading images of work.
  • When logged in to the CaFE system:
    • Click on Apply to Calls tab at the top of the page.
    • Search Art Ability.
    • Select Apply to This Call in orange text.
  • Complete application form.
  • You will receive a submission confirmation email from CaFE.

CaFE troubleshooting

For specific assistance with the CaFE system or formatting images, please contact CaFE Tech Support at 1.888.562.7232 or email Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital is not responsible for submissions that are incomplete or that fail to upload as a CaFE profile.

If you do not have a computer

The preferred method of submission is online via CaFE. If you do not have a computer, please call 484.596.5607 for the mail-in form and further instructions.

Selected artists will be notified with preliminary review results and additional instructions for submitting work. Any supplemental information should be sent to: Art Ability, Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital, 414 Paoli Pike, Malvern, PA 19355.

For additional information or questions, contact the Art Ability office at 484.596.5607 or email