2018 National Exhibition in Steamboat Springs, Colorado

27th Annual National Juried
Exhibition of Traditional Oils

Oil Painters of America’s Twenty-seventh Annual National Exhibition will be held in Steamboat Springs, CO,
from June 1 to September 3, 2018.

Oil Painters of America's Twenty-Seventh National Exhibition and Convention will be hosted by the Steamboat Art Museum (SAM), located in Steamboat Springs, Colorado, from June 1 through September 3, 2018. Convention activities begin May 29 with the ever popular Wet Paint Competition. Cash and merchandise awards for the Wet Paint competition will be a minimum of $10,000. The opening reception will be held at SAM for artists, collectors, the public and the press on Friday, June 1, from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. The awards presentation will take place nearby at 8:15 p.m. at The Chief Theater. An extensive assortment of informative and educational seminars will be offered to OPA members and guests during the convention.

Located on the Yampa River, Steamboat Springs is known for its wide variety of activities for visitors of all ages. Fish Creek Falls offers a beautiful site for painting the 280' waterfall as well as being an enjoyable hiking area. Take a scenic gondola ride, tour the Yampa River Botanic Park or the Tread of Pioneers Museum. There are helicopter rides over the Yampa Valley as well as kayaking and floating down the river through the middle of town. Other activities include swimming in Old Town Hot Springs, golfing, horseback riding, hot air ballooning and fishing. Steamboat Springs offers something for everyone.

Our Goal

Our goal is to assemble the finest display of representational oil paintings. The focus in the jurying process will be to select paintings that show the highest quality in draftsmanship, color, and composition, emphasizing a diversity in representational style and subject matter.

Total Awards

The total awards will be approximately $100,000, including a $25,000 Best In Show.

Awarding Juror

The awarding juror will be OPA Master Signature member Craig Tennant.


Artists eligible to compete are citizens - both natural born or otherwise - of the United States, Canada, or Mexico who are 2018 OPA members. Nonresident aliens who currently live in the United States, Canada, or Mexico are eli- gible to participate provided that they have been physically present at the address provided to OPA for eight of the last twelve months and that the residency is considered to be their permanent domicile and that they are 2018 OPA members. Nonresident aliens whose North American residency is in question will be asked to provide proof of residency including, but not limited to, employment history, references, and utility bills in the individual's name. The decision of the Board is final.

General Information

FINAL ACCEPTANCE: Online submissions: Friday, January 26, 2018
  • Canvas size: maximum size not to exceed 1200 square inches (unframed). Example: 30" (height) x 40" (width) = 1200 square inches.
  • Maximum entries two (2). However, only one (1) painting may be accepted.
  • Paintings entered must have been painted in the last 3 years and should not have been accepted into a previous OPA National Exhibition.
  • Submission must be originally conceived, artist's own reference, own drawing, own concept and must have been self-painted.
  • Paintings created in an instructional setting, including, but not limited to workshops and art classes are not considered original artwork. Paintings created from a group photo shoot set-up by another artist are not considered original artwork.
  • No direct copies of stock images, historic photos, or of any reference to which you do not hold total copyright are allowed.
  • NO digital, mechanical, photo, or other transferring to the substrate of any kind is acceptable. The artist must draw and/or paint the image on the substrate him/herself.
  • Painting must be framed and wired for hanging. When framing deep-edged paintings (museum wrap canvas or deep board) the frame must be of adequate depth so that the substrate does not extend more than 1/2" beyond the back of the frame.
  • Flat substrates, including canvas board, Gesso board, Gesso Masonite board, acrylic Gessoed Dibond aluminum, aluminum composite panel and wood are acceptable. Paintings on decorative copper and tooled aluminum, oil paper, natural stone or on three dimensional objects are not acceptable.
  • Oil paints, alkyd resin, water soluble oils and oil sticks/bars are acceptable. Metal leaf (i.e: gold, silver, etc.) is acceptable if it does not comprise more than twenty percent (20%) of the visible surface.
  • The artist retains copyright to his/her image(s). However, accepted images do become part of OPA archives and may be used for future OPA event promotion.
  • All work must be for sale and reflect the artist's current pricing structure. No NFS.
  • An artist who withdraws an entry after acceptance into the exhibition shall not be eligible to enter any OPA exhibition for the two succeeding years.

Entry Information

Online Submissions - Deadline: Friday, January 26, 2018

Electronic applications will be accepted beginning Monday, November 13, 2017. Images should be between 1400 and 4000 pixels at the largest dimension. Specific details on how to prepare your image properly can be found at here. To submit your electronic application and images, please go directly to OPA's 2018 National Exhibition Application.

Jurying Fees

The jurying fee for electronic entries is as follows: one painting is $30.00 or $45.00 for two paintings. Only one painting can be accepted. Electronic payment may be made by credit card or through PayPal. No e-checks will be accepted. Jurying fees for online submissions may also be paid by check mailed to OPA if received by Friday, January 26, 2018.


You must be a paid member through December 31, 2018 at a cost of $70.00. If you are currently not a member or have not paid your 2018 membership dues, OPA will accept your entry provided that 1.) an electronic membership fee is paid by Friday, January 26 or 2.) a mailed membership application and your annual dues are postmarked no later than Friday, January 12, 2018. More membership information may be found here.

Sales Commission

Sales commission of 40% is required by SAM for all paintings sold. Please take this into consideration when setting your price. All work that is submitted must be for sale. No NFS. Paintings must be priced in accordance with the artist's current pricing structure.

Delivery and Return of Accepted Work

Delivery for Local Artists: Deliver uncrated paintings to the Steamboat Art Museum, 807 Lincoln Avenue, Steamboat Springs, CO between April 9 and April 20, 2018. Hand delivered work must be picked up between September 4 and September 7, 2018.

Out of Town Artists: ship to the Steamboat Art Museum, to be received between April 9 and April 20, 2018.

807 Lincoln Ave.,
Steamboat Springs, CO 80487

Handling Fee: Out of Town Artists must pay a $25.00 fee online prior to their painting being hung. This fee covers the expense of uncrating, storage of crates, recrating and contacting your shipper for return. Artist may elect to include a return shipping label with their painting OR may email the label directly to the Steamboat Art Museum. OPA will waive the uncrating fee for artists who use a commercially manufactured artist's/strong box such as a StrongBox™ by Airfloat Systems, or similar brand, like Masterpak or Uline. FedEx Art boxes are NOT included in the list of boxes for which the fee will be waived. Artists who do not use one of these special boxes are required to remit the $25 prior to hanging of the painting. Strong boxes will be returned to the artists at the conclusion of the show at the artist's expense.

Shipments from OUTSIDE the US must be shipped "FREE DOMICILE" or will not be accepted.

Liabilities and Responsibilities

Oil Painters of America and the Steamboat Art Museum will not be responsible for loss or damage of any artwork, no matter what the cause. By submitting artwork to this exhibition, each artist will be deemed to have concurred with this agreement. Artists pay for shipping both ways. We suggest that you provide insurance to cover the full value of the artwork while in transit.

James Bruce, Signature Member and OPA Board Member, will serve as chairman of a Jurying Committee consisting of five Master Signature and/or Signature members of OPA. The results of the jurying will be final. No refunds will be made on unaccepted entries.

Good Luck and Good Painting


Steamboat Art Museum

Gallery Hours
Tuesday - Saturday
11:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m.
Sunday + Monday
By Appointment

January 26

Deadline for submissions

February 23

Acceptance notification posted on the OPA website

April 9 through April 20

Both shipped and hand delivered artwork to arrive at Steamboat Art Museum

May 29

Convention activities begin

June 1

Opening Reception: for collectors, press, exhibiting artists and the public from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Awards Presentation: announcement of recipients of National awards, Wet Paint winners and introduction of newest Signature and Master Signature conferees at 8:15 p.m. at The Chief Theater

June 1 through September 3

Length of time show will be open for viewing. See sidebar for museum hours

September 4 through September 7

Local Artists: removal of paintings during this period. If not removed a storage fee will be charged. SAM thanks you for your cooperation.


OPA has reserved a limited number of rooms at The Steamboat Grand. Please make your reservations and identify yourself as an "Oil Painters of America" conference participant early as space is limited. The cut-off date to receive this special rate is: April 27, 2018.

The Steamboat Grand
2300 Mt. Werner Circle,
Steamboat Springs, CO. 80487
Phone: 877-269-2628

    Rates are as follows:
  • Double Queen Guest Room: $115 + tax
  • Deluxe King Guest Room: $115 + tax
  • Studio Guest Room: $115 + tax
  • Parlor (living room with sofa sleeper only): $105 + tax
  • One Bedroom: $150 + tax
  • Deluxe One Bedroom: $165 + tax
  • Two Bedroom: $205 + tax
  • Deluxe Two Bedroom: $245 + tax
  • Three Bedroom: $365 + tax
  • 3 Bdrm Penthouse: $425 + tax · 4 Bdrm Penthouse $525 + tax · 5 Bdrm Penthouse $650 + tax

Please Note: Complimentary parking in the ski time square garage opposite the hotel for registered guests of the hotel and $5 for attendees staying off property. Parking in the underground garage directly under the hotel is $12 per day. Attendees must pay beforehand to gain access.

Travel Information

The closest airport is the Yampa Valley Regional Airport which is 25 miles west of Steamboat Springs. Be sure to book early as flights are limited. Or, you can fly into Denver International Airport and drive to Steamboat Springs which is approximately a 3-hour hour. Give yourself time to stop along the way – it is a beautiful drive!

Airport Shuttle Information: GO Alpine operates daily, scheduled shuttles from both the Yampa Valley Regional Airport and Denver International Airport. Reservations are required to guarantee a seat and payment is due at the time of the booking. Online Shared-Ride Reservations Must be Made at Least 12 Hours in Advance. Visit goalpine.com or call: 970-879-2800.

The Steamboat Grand Hotel operates a limited shuttle service to and from the hotel to downtown Steamboat Springs. This will allow attendees to travel to and from the Steamboat Art Museum, The Chief Theater, and the Bud Werner Memorial Library for free. Attendees will be responsible for their own travel arrangements to and from the Perry Mansfield Performing Arts Center and American Art Collector’s Saturday night closing party.