The Buzz Stops Here

Art.Science Gallery

Entry Deadline: Mar. 8

916 Springdale Road
Austin, TX

Curatorial Statement

The history of bees and humans is a very old one. Bees figure prominently in mythology and folklore. The bee, found in Ancient Near East and Aegean cultures, was considered the sacred insect that bridged the natural world to the underworld. Bee emblems date back to the ancient Greeks goddesses. Bees are found in the myths of many ancient cultures including Greek, Kalahari Desert, Uganda and Hittite. As far back as 7,000 years ago, humans domesticated bees and harvested their honey and wax. Beekeeping was a Minoan craft, and the fermented honey-drink, mead, was an old Cretan intoxicant, older than wine.

In recent years, bees have been very much in the news. There has been a drastic and mysterious die-off of honeybee colonies. The number of honeybee colonies has dropped to about 2.5 million from more than 4 million in the 1970s. There are several reasons as to why this may be happening: loss of habitat, pesticide use, unspecified fungal diseases or mite infestations. Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD), the disappearance and dying of honey bee colonies has many beekeepers, farmers and the general public worried.

Bees have also been the focus of centuries of scientific research for their intriguing social behaviors, architecture of their hives, role in pollination, biodiversity, and more. This exhibition will be themed on bees, not only because they directly produce the wax which is the essential ingredient of encaustic medium, but also because there are many scientific angles which artists can explore.

The work in this show will directly speak to the science and conservation of bees including entomology, conservation, pollination, behavior, evolution, ecology, genetics, and agriculture. Even the animal architecture and geometry of bee hives and the chemical and physical properties of bee products including wax and honey may be explored.

Encaustic artists particularly appreciate the work of the bees as they pollinate flowers and plants in our gardens, which is necessary to sustain our sources of the food we eat, and to produce the wax needed for our art — truly places where art and science meet.

International Encaustic Artists (IEA) is a non- profit, professional artists’ organization that was founded in 2005. IEA remains the oldest and largest professional membership organization for encaustic art. The membership of IEA includes approximately 450 artists spanning three continents with members in thirty-four states in the U.S., five provinces in Canada, and artists in Mexico, Europe and Asia.

Artworks will be evaluated based on the quality of the work, but also on how the work explores one of the scientific or natural history aspects of the open call described above. Therefore, work simply depicting bees will not be ranked as highly as works that specifically address the scientific nature of the open call for artwork.

Exhibition Dates:
Dates: April 18 – May 30, 2015
Reception: Saturday April 18, 2015 7-10pm


Open to any artist working primarily in encaustic (hot wax). In order to be eligible for an IEA members reduced entry fee, one must be good standing through May 2015.

Entry Deadline:

All entries must be submitted by 11:59 EDT on Sunday, March 8, 2015
via entrythingy

Entry fees (non-refundable):
For IEA members, $35 for up to 3 images, $5 for each additional image up to 6 total. For non-IEA members, $40 for up to 3 images, $5 for each additional image up to 6 total.

Artists will be notified of acceptance/rejection on or before Wednesday March 25, 2015.

March 25- April 18—consultation and decision regarding awards
Artist Reception: April 18, 2015, 7-10 PM
Exhibition Dates: April 18 – May 30, 2015

Return to list of all entries