The Tempe Festival of the Arts consistently ranks among the Top 100 Classic & Contemporary Craft Shows in the nation by Sunshine Artist magazine and has received the prestigious Pinnacle Award from the International Festival and Events Association. The spring and fall events each attract nearly 225,000 visitors to the Downtown Tempe over the course of a 3-day weekend.
Quality independent artists are fundamental to the success of the event. Each Festival receives more than 500 applications from throughout North America, in 17 different visual arts categories that range from wood to photography to ceramics, wearable art, jewelry and other categories. From these applicants, a jury comprised of members of the local art community ranks the top artisans in each category to participate in the Festival, and the highest ranking artists receive invitations to participate. During the Festival, a new jury selects the best overall artist and the top artist in each category and these winners receive cash honoraria awards.
As many as 375 artist booths line Mill Avenue and the surrounding streets presenting unique, and hand-made artwork that offers visitors a distinctive shopping experience.