On Display April 15th – May 31st

Notification was made on March 25th

Introducing MASKulinity

Batman wears a mask; the Lone Ranger wears a mask; so do Spiderman and the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Today, we all wear masks – but who is the man behind the mask? Just as social norms for women have changed images of femininity, the definition of masculinity has changed drastically as well. So just who is that masked man – or what masks does he wear? MFA invites artists in all media to examine the changing role of men and the evolving definition of masculinity in today’s society. This all-media MFA exhibition will display selected works in their online Curve Gallery from April 15 – May 31, 2021. Exhibition Chairs: Richard Niewerth and Wil Scott.

Click this icon to view and print the downloadable prospectus. 

Juror: Anthony Shostak, Curator of Education, Bates College Museum of Art

Anthony Shostak has been the Curator of Education at the Bates College Museum of Art for over 20 years. He created the museum’s internship program’s successful educational outreach programs, including The Thousand Words Project, a highly educational outreach program that teaches writing skills through an exploration of how artists create. Shostak received his BFA with honors in Painting and Drawing from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, PA, and has exhibited in the US and abroad where his work was included in the internationally traveling exhibition Revoluciones del Mundo, originating in Havana, Cuba. He has also organized numerous exhibitions for the museum, including Green Horizons (2007), Joe Nicoletti: A Retrospective (2010), and Starstruck: The Fine Art of Astrophotography (2012).

Juror’s Statement

Adjudicating a group exhibition of works by artists responding to an open call is always an exciting challenge. The artists always surprise with their interpretations of the exhibition’s theme which has been roughly outlined by the organizing curator. This exhibition is no exception. The many works submitted to this exhibition illustrate some of the myriad ways that masculinity is understood through the artists’ sometimes unanticipated answers to the curator’s appeal. We see the familiar engineer at work, playful children horsing around a construction site, gentle father with infant child, brave soldier ready to lay down their life, selfless rescue worker working against the clock, the desirable boy-toy and hunk, and even a glimpse at the post-human male and trans-species chimera whose science fiction possibility is brought a step closer with each incremental advance of technology. Some of the artists strip away masks to reveal roles that may themselves be merely deeper layers that mask true identity.  Others present images of fully masked men whose true selves are in plain sight or which are actually defined by the mask itself. The artists play to their strengths, pushing their chosen medium to create visions of masculinity and identity which we help complete through the participatory act of viewing.



Coming Soon*

*Award contributors and recipients will also be listed in the exhibition catalog.

Information for Accepted Artists

Exhibition Schedule

Exhibition Schedule

  • Jan. 14 Online entry opens for submissions.
  • Mar. 11 Deadline for entries.
  • By Mar. 25 All entrants notified by email. Check MFA’s website or contact MFA if you do not receive notice.
  • Apr. 15 First day of the exhibition.
  • May 31 Last day of the exhibition.



MFA shall not be liable for any special or consequential damages that result from the use of, or inability to use, MFA’s online exhibition gallery.



MFA’s Online Sales Gallery is provided to North American artists to sell their work. Only artists in the 48 contiguous United States may set a price. MFA will reimburse appropriate shipping costs to those artists for online sales shipments. All other artists must enter Price on Request (POR) and purchase inquiries will be referred by MFA to the artist. MFA retains 20% commission (15% for members) on any work sold through MFA. Artists will be responsible for fulfillment of sales.


All entrants will receive notice by email. The notice to accepted artists will include specific details and could vary from the prospectus. A list of accepted artists and artwork will also be posted on MFA’s website. Please set your email account to recognize this address: info@mdfedart.org. Contact Circle Gallery if you do not receive notice.