VisArts + CURRENT Books

VisArts is thrilled to participate as an exhibiting organization in this year’s inaugural edition of CURRENT Books, a special CURRENT Art Fair event featuring artists book makers, zine makers and publishers of artists monographs and other book-based arts objects.

This year at CURRENT Books, VisArts will highlight local artists by featuring miniature, hand-made artists books and zines that will be sold out of the VisArts Art-o-Mat machine. Artwork sold from the Art-o-Mat are just $5 and will be a mix of local artists and some national artists selected from the Art-o-Mat collection.

Part of VisArts’ mission is to elevate the work and voices of artists in our community and educate the public about art and how it’s made. CURRENT Books provides the perfect way to re-introduce Richmond to our Art-o-Mat, highlight local artists, and provide an accessible and fun way for Richmonders to expand their artist book and zine collection.

Our Art-o-Mat at VisArts is one of many refurbished cigarette machines across the country that sell miniature works of art. As an organization, Art-o-Mat encourages art consumption, expands access to artists’ work, and innovatively combines the worlds of art and commerce by presenting miniature works of art that are progressive, yet personal and approachable.

Call for Entries: VisArts + CURRENT Books

VisArts invites artists to submit work for this special VisArts Art-o-Mat exhibition at CURRENT Books. We are looking for innovative and handmade artist books and zines or book-inspired objects. Entries are welcome from artists from Richmond and beyond who will create and edition of 20 hand-made artist books or hand-made zines. We encourage innovative forms and media provided final works follows all eligibility and entry parameters.

A group of 22 final artists will be selected to be a part of this special short-term takeover within the Art-o-Mat. In addition, all prototypes will be approved and judged by the founder of Art-o-Mat, Clark Whittington. Accepted work will not only be a part of this Art-o-Mat takeover at CURRENT Books, but will also be a part of the Art-o-Mat’s official collection. Visit to learn more and see their collection.

Application + Deadline

An online application must be completed in order to be considered for entry, the application can be found here. In addition to filling out the application, artists must submit a working proof or prototype of the proposed entry, and complete a copy of the Art-o-Mat submission form. These items must be delivered or dropped off in person to:

Visual Arts Center of Richmond
1812 West Main Street
Richmond, VA 23220

Applications will be due Friday, February 16th. Accepted artists will be notified by March 2. If accepted, artists will be expected to deliver their completed, packaged edition of 20 works to VisArts by Friday March 23.

Eligibility + Entry Parameters

  1. Artists must submit an application to complete and edition of 20hand-made pieces to be exhibited and sold during CURRENT Books within the Art-o-Mat. The edition should include a set of books identical or nearly identical in size with unifying conceptual ideas and processes.
  2. Pieces must be either a zine, book or book-inspired object.
  3. Final pieces must be able to fit within a box that is 3 ¼” tall 2 1/8” wide and 7/8” thick. Strict size parameters must be followed in order for the Art-o-Mat to properly dispense the work and avoid vending difficulty, logistical problems and unnecessary expense.
  4. VisArts will provide artists with standard white boxes in which their art will be packaged. The package must be filled so it will be rigid to protect the contents from rattling around; additional packing material like tissue paper, bubble wrap, etc. can be used. The desired minimum weight is 1 ounce. These boxes should be labeled by the artist and wrapped in acetate we will provide.
  5. Your pieces of art may not contain: edibles, magnets, glitter, confetti or hazardous materials. If applicable, please label on the outside of your piece that content may not be suitable for children.
  6. Applicants are required to submit a 2” X 2″ square label to identify the artists column in the machine. This placard must contain your name and name of the work or project, if applicable. This should accompany your prototype submission.
  7. Vending price will be fixed at $5.00 and artists are paid $2.50 per piece by Art-o-Mat. VisArts will provide packaging materials for selected artists.