Call for Entries
Outwin Boochever Portrait Competition 2025
Open to All Media
Deadline January 26, 2024
Artists are invited to submit portraits in any media for consideration in the seventh triennial Outwin Boochever Portrait Competition. The competition seeks to broaden the definition of portraiture and highlight the genre’s relevance in society and contemporary art. Artworks may originate from direct encounters between artist and subject or draw upon existing imagery or archival research in response to history. Artists are encouraged to think about portraiture’s potential to engage with the social and political landscape of our time.
Submit a Portrait
- Open to artists who are at least 18 years old (by the time of entry) and who are living and working in the United States, Puerto Rico, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, American Samoa and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
- Each artist may enter only one artwork.
- The competition welcomes all media, including painting, drawing, sculpture, photography, printmaking, textiles, video, performance art, and digital or time-based art. (Note size restrictions in Rules for Entry)
- Work completed before January 1, 2022, will be disqualified.
- All entries must be submitted electronically through the online submission site below, which opens October 2, 2022 at 9am EASTERN TIME (Washington, DC) and closes January 26, 2024, at midnight MOUNTAIN TIME (Denver, CO). Customer service will close at 6pm EASTERN TIME.
- There is a nonrefundable registration fee of *$50.
- Please review all Rules for Entry before submitting.
*The processing fee helps to cover the shipping costs from all eligible locations for the semifinalists’ artworks to be evaluated in-person.
To properly submit an entry, all artists must provide the following information via the online submission site:
- Name, address, email, and other contact details. Information about the work being entered, including creation date, media, all dimensions, and approximate weight.
- Up to two images of one artwork can be submitted. For multipart works, one image should show a view of the entire work, and one image should be a detail view which includes one component of the work. Up to one audio or video of the artwork can be submitted.
- For time-based art, artists should submit a compressed exhibition copy not to exceed 10 MB for audio and 100 MB for video. One video file with an additional optional two images of the artwork can be submitted.
- Performance art submissions should include a fully developed, finished written concept and visuals. If the work has already been performed, photographic or video documentation of the work should be included as a compressed video file not to exceed 100 MB, or two still images. If it has never been performed, a storyboard or drawings outlining the action should be submitted as an image file.
- Credit card information to pay the nonrefundable entry fee.
*All allowable media formats are listed on the Artist Help Page. Media linked to YouTube and Vimeo are accepted.
Prizes and Exhibition
The first-prize winner will receive $25,000 and will be awarded a commission to portray a remarkable living American for the National Portrait Gallery’s collection. The second-prize winner will receive $10,000, and the third-prize winner will receive $7,500. The winner of the People’s Choice Award will receive $1,000. All finalists’ works will form a major exhibition that will be on view at the Portrait Gallery from April 26, 2025 through February 22, 2026, with plans for a subsequent national tour.
*Acceptable media formats:
File Type: JPEG or JPG only.
File Dimensions: 1,200 pixels or greater on the longest side.
File Size: Under 5 MB.
Color Profile: sRGB
File Type: AIFF, WAV, XMF, MP3.
File Size: Under 10 MB.
Bit rate: minimum 96 kpbs–maximum 320 kbps
Codec: aiff, wav, au
File Type: MOV, MP4, WMV, 3GP, AVI, ASF, MPG, M2T, MKV, M2TS.
File Size: Under 100 MB.
Resolution: minimum 640 x 480, maximum 1920 x 1080
Aspect ratio: 4:3 or 16:9
Bit rate: recommended above 240 kbps
Frame rate: minimum 12 fps, recommended 30 fps.