Student Film Festival Competition

The Foundation for Self-Taught Artists is a non-profit organization that presents and promotes information and scholarly research on self-taught artists. The Foundation fosters public understanding and appreciation of self-taught artists and their work through an interactive website, documentary films, social media, educational events, and academic partnerships.

To that end, the Foundation is launching a student film festival competition which will provide a financial reward to independent film and video creators who submit worthy projects that are consistent with the organization’s goals of furthering the understanding of self-taught American artists (living or dead). The Foundation defines self-taught artists as individuals who did not formally study art, who do not operate professionally as artists, and who created visual work with little or no connection to the national or international art world and its dealers, galleries, collectors, critics, museums, and exhibitions. Some of the names that have been given to this art are: visionary, outsider, naïve, raw, self-taught, art brut.


A cash award of $2,500 will be given to the documentary film that best gives insight into the life/work of self-taught artist/s. In addition, there will be two honorable mention awards of $1,000 each. The winning film will be shown on the Foundation’s website, and makers of the winning film will also have an opportunity to meet with educators, advisors, and selected board members of the Foundation for Self-Taught Artists to consult on their projects.


The award is open to filmmakers of undergraduate and/or graduate level studies. One submission per person/team is permitted. We encourage quality documentary projects between five and ten (5-10) minutes in length, suitable for presentation on our website. Submitted films must be fully completed, and must be accompanied by a producer’s warranty which guarantees ownership and control of the material submitted without limitation or restriction that could interfere with the posting of the film on the Foundation website.

For more information, and to submit an application, please view the complete Rules and Submission Guidelines. Entries must be postmarked by February 28, 2013.