Call for Entries

Call for Entries
The International Museum of Dinnerware Design’s Fifth Biennial Juried Exhibition

Entomophagous Dining (Eating Insects)

Bill Brouillard, porcelain plate IMoDD 2021.45,  Pamela Argentieri, EAT Flatware set, IMoDD 2021.46

Billions of Brood X cicadas emerged in May and June of 2021 in parts of the United States. Some people took Cicada-cations to catch a glimpse of them.  Others left town to escape them and the cicada tourism surrounding their emergence. Other people stir fried them with garlic in a wok. Whether that makes you smile, lick your lips, or triggers your gag reflex, eating insects is a thing.

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations estimates that two billion people, more than a quarter of the world’s population, eat insects as part of their standard diet. Some believe that this is the only way to feed a population of 9 billion by 2050. At the least, eating insects can help fight hunger and food insecurity. They are a fantastic source of nutrients, such as protein and iron. Insect farming, which can be carried out in an urban environment, utilizes smaller amounts of land, water and feed when compared to meat production, and produces far fewer greenhouse gases.

Some people don’t realize they are already eating insects (or parts of insects). Take, for example, the situations described in a recent edition of the FDA guidance handbook Food Defect Levels Handbook. It is true, this source shares the maximum allowable levels of mold, dirt, bits of insects, rodent hairs, etc., in our food.  The FDA guidelines, updated in 2018, allowed for one of my favorite spices, ground cinnamon to have no more than an average of 400 or more insect fragments per 50 grams. Hops, which is in all beer, has as the action level an average of 2,500 aphids per 10 grams. So, we have all inadvertently eaten some insects (or parts of insects).

Whether or not you are nodding your head and thinking “yup” or shaking your head and thinking “yuck,” we must all agree that dining on insects requires special dinnerware.  And perhaps some ritual sculpture. For its Fifth Biennial Invitational and Juried Exhibition in 2023, the International Museum of Dinnerware Design wants artists and designers to explore how dining on insects (entomophagy) may be in our future, if not our present.

Exhibition dates: April 8 – August 26, 2023
Opening reception Saturday April 8, 2023, 1 – 4 p.m.
Location: Museum on Main Street
Part of the Washtenaw County Historical Society
500 N. Main St., Ann Arbor, MI 48104
Entry Deadline: January 31, 2023
Entry Fee: $35 per entry/piece (with a maximum of 3 images per entry) payable by check or PayPal

This exhibition is about sustaining the planet by dining on insects (entomophagy). Whether the perspective is “yup” or “yuck” the intention of this juried exhibition is to showcase the best in contemporary dinnerware as it relates to the theme Entomophagous Dining (Eating Insects) through the creation of specialized dinnerware or sculptural work relating to the topic, no larger than 18” in all dimensions, as created by artists and designers in all media from the United States and Canada. Accepted design drawings should be no larger than 18” x 24” dry-mounted ready for installation. The International Museum of Dinnerware Design is the only museum in the world devoted to the subject of dinnerware, international in scope, no material limitations, including functional ware, ancient to futuristic, and fine art referencing dinnerware.

Eligibility and Rules:

No media restrictions. Open to all artists and designers in the U.S. and Canada. Each entry must demonstrate the artist’s/designer’s personal interpretation of the theme Entomophagous Dining (Eating Insects) whether that be in the form of a functional piece or sculpture or design concept model or drawing. Work should be no larger than 18” in all directions (except in the case of design drawings). Entries will be juried on creativity/innovation and artistic merit/aesthetics. If an entry is a functional piece, then it is strongly suggested that one of the images include actual insects in or on the work. No wall pieces will be accepted except in the case of accepted design drawings, which must arrive dry-mounted and ready for installation and should not exceed 18” x 24.” All work must have been completed in the last two years. Work submitted may not include perishable materials. Please include the dimensions of the work, as well as materials, along with a brief biography and artist’s/designer’s statement about this particular work. The work does not need to be for sale; however, the International Museum of Dinnerware Design will retain a 30% commission on any work sold during exhibition.

Dead Bug, drawing by Mary Jo Bole

Juror: Mary Jo Bole

About the Juror: Mary Jo Bole has made her work in geologic materials, printmaking, artist-books, and is now working on a feature length biographical film essay about her life, work and an ancestor syndrome titled “Family White Elephants”.  She is currently an artist-in-residence in the Video/Film lab at the Wexner Center for the Arts. Bole is a widely exhibited artist who has shown her works in the United States, Europe and Russia. She is an emeritus professor from the Ohio State University.  Besides occasionally drawing insect remnants found in cobwebs, her resources include gallows humor, memento mori, Victorian left-over culture, crumbling postindustrial Cleveland, curious objects and cemeteries, a dose of punk, the gilded age, and Lake Erie. Her website (more of an inventory) is

Application deadline and fees:

Application forms (which include information such as artist/designer name, contact information, description of the work, materials, dimensions, and whether it’s for sale) can be submitted via mail or scanned into an email. Get Entry Form. Submit with (a) high resolution digital image(s) (via email) and include information about each image. Also include an artist’s/designer’s statement and brief biography. Deadline for submission 12 a.m. January 31, 2023 EST. Artists/designers will be notified of acceptance of work by February 8, 2023. Accepted work must be received no later than March 1, 2023. Design drawings accepted into the exhibition must be received dry-mounted on foam core ready for installation.

Juried from digital image(s) (email  Images must be high resolution.

Entry fee: $35 per entry

Artists/designers must maintain their own insurance. Artists/designers are responsible for insurance on in-bound and out-bound shipping as well as while on the exhibition site. Every reasonable precaution will be taken during the receiving, installation, exhibition, and return of work. The International Museum of Dinnerware Design will assume no responsibility for any loss or damage.

Receipt and return of art work:

Shipping Address:
The International Museum of Dinnerware Design
520 N. Main Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48104

Artwork must be shipped (at the artist’s/designer’s expense) via UPS, FedEx, or USPS in a sturdy reusable container. No COD shipments will be accepted. No loose Styrofoam packing peanuts will be allowed in packaging. All accepted work shipped and hand delivered must be received no later than the March 1, 2023 deadline. Hand delivered work must be delivered to Ann Arbor by prior appointment during office hours Monday – Friday 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Accepted artists/designers shipping their work must include prepaid charges for return shipping.

Cash Prizes:

First prize $450; second prize $300; third prize $200.
Artists prizes sponsored by “Jiffy” mixes of Chelsea Milling Company.

Online catalogue:

An online catalogue will be created from images and label copy submitted by the artist/designer and will be available at the International Museum of Dinnerware Design’s website at


  1. All work must remain for the duration of the exhibition April 8 – August 26, 2023.
  2. The museum reserves the right to photograph works for publicity and other purposes.
  3. Payment of the entry fee signifies the artist’s understanding and acceptance of the rules and conditions of the competition.
  4. All entrants must include their name, address, city, state, zip code, country, phone, email, title of work, date of work, materials and techniques, dimensions, and price.


January 31, 2023 – Deadline for entries
February 15, 2023 – Notification of accepted work
March 1, 2023 – Deadline for receipt of accepted art work
April 8 – August 26, 2023 – Exhibition dates
September 15, 2023 – Return of all work will begin


Dr. Margaret Carney, Director
The International Museum of Dinnerware Design
520 N. Main Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48104
607-382-1415 cell

Please email or phone if your questions aren’t answered here.