Art Festival Directors Conference

March 13-15, 2022

LOCATION: Sheraton Suites, Old Town Alexandria, VA - $129 Per Night

TIME Sunday, 5pm to 9pm | Monday 8am to 5pm | Tuesday 8am to 4pm

REGISTRATIONRegistration Open

COST: $525 Early Bird (9/15-21 - 12/31/21)  | $595 (1/1/22 - 2/15/22) | $695 (2/16 .....)

Virtal Only $500 per individual link - not all sessions avaiable




Cindy Lerick - Executive Director, ArtFest Fort Myers

Robin Markowitz - Executive Director, Art-Linx

Kerry Murphy - CEO/President, Artisphere


This two and half day professional development event brings together show directors and those connected to the industry for learning, discussion, inspiration and networking opportunities. This conference is tailored to individuals who are involved with

the planning of an art fairs or festivals, including board chairs, council or chamber staff, and volunteers. 

COVID: All conference participants will be asked to provide proof of vaccination to attend. 


REFUNDS: If the Conference is cancelled due to COVID 100% refund will be given. 

If you have registered but cannot attend (for any reason) you will have the option to attend virtually and will not receive a refund.

This conference is a labor of love and break even at best - your payment is your committment to the conference.

 Conference attendees will have the opportunity to participate in: 


  • Vital networking events

  • Presentations by experts highlighting critical trends affecting the art fair industry

  • Training on skills to amplify visibility of festivals, grow participation, promote artistic excellence and more


 Conference Schedule  - Preliminary - All times and presentations are subject to change

 Sunday, March 13, 2022

 5pm - Happy Hour

 6pm - Dinner 

 7:30pm - Dr. Brea Heidelberg, Drexel University, How to Promote Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Using a Blind Jury Process.


 Monday, March 14, 2022

 8 - 8:30am - Check in and Hot Breakfast Buffet

 8:30 - 9am - Introduction of Conference Attendees

 9 - 10am - Follow Up on How to Promote Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Dr. Brea Heidelberg, Drexel University

 10 - 10:30am - Morning Break

 10:30 -Noon - Experiental Marketing for Art Shows, Stephanie Heinatz, Consociate Media

 Noon - 1pm - Lunch

 1 -2:30 pm - Event Risk Management, Ira L. Rosen, Temple University

 2:30 - 3pm - Afternoon Break

 3 - 5pm -  Art Show Priorities - (3) Break out Sessions - Peer Leaders

Tuesdsay, March 15, 2022

 8 - 8:30am - Hot Breakfast Buffet

 8:30 - 9am - Artist Community Post Covid - 11th Annual State of the Artist Survey Results from Art-Linx

 9 - 10am - Volunteer Recruitment and Retention, Seth Lewis, Festival of the Arts (Oklahoma City)

 10 - 10:30am - Morning Break

 10:30 -Noon - The Future of Art and Digital Engagment, Hilary-Morgan Watt, Smithsonian Museum,

 Noon - 1pm - Lunch

 1 -2:30 pm - How to Run an Effective Sponsorship Program - Panel Discussion with Sara Collins (Stone Arch Bridge Festival),

                      Kerry Murphy (Artisphere), and Sarah Umlauf (St. Louis Art Fair)

 2 :30 - 4:00pm - Lessons Learned from the Pandemic - What Worked and Can be Utilitzed for the Future- Roundtable Dicussion

Conference Concludes


This conference is produced by Art-Linx

Please contact Robin Markowitz at 202-251-0637 or email with any questions



















Conference Co-Chair Cindy Lerick, Executive Director of ArtFest Fort Myers and President of The Art of Events, providing services to a broad range of festivals and events around the world. In 2019 she is working with the Saint Louis Art Fair as a consultant. Most recently she was Executive Director of the Sausalito Art Festival in Sausalito, CA; a position that she accepted in 2017 to help the organization through an internal transition period.  Prior to that move, she served as the Executive Director/President of the Saint Louis Art Fair from 2009 - 2017. Before that she was the Executive Director of the Uptown Association and the Uptown Art Fair (1996-2007). She also co-produced the Main Street Fort Worth Arts Festival from 2002-2004.

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Conference Producer and Co-Chair: Robin Markowitz has been immersed in the art festival world as a Jewelry Artist, Art Festival Director, Principal at Art-Linx and Editor of the Art Festival Newsletter. I began my art career as a jeweler, showcasing my work at juried art festivals since 1995 and have served as an Festival Director since 2009.  Art-Linx is the culmination of all my art expertise. Art-Linx is the only multi-platform connecting service for the art festival community: connecting artists to art shows, directors to directors and galleries/art publications to artists.  The Art Festival Newsletter (published 6x per year) has topical articles for the art professional and highlights industry trends.

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Stephanie R. Heinatz is the Founder and Managing Partner of Consociate Media, a marketing, public relations and communication firm based in Gloucester Point, Virginia, a culturally rich rural region along the Chesapeake Bay. Cutting her teeth as a newspaper journalist and working on assignments from her own hometown, to the remote areas of East Africa to war-torn Iraq, Stephanie believed one thing – stories are the most powerful way to reach people and inspire change. She brings that same strategy to Consociate Media, where she specializes in working with business owners, legislative initiatives, economic development programs, non-profit organizations, tourism efforts and individuals to strategically plan and execute storytelling across a wide range of new and traditional media. 


KEYNOTE SPEARKER - Dr. Brea  Heidelberg is an arts management educator, consultant, and researcher. She is currently Associate Professor & Program Director of the Entertainment & Arts Management program at Drexel University and Founder and Principal of ISO Arts Consulting - a firm offering equity trainings, program & organizational evaluation, and workforce solutions. . She has served the field as a board member of the Association of Arts Administration Educators, where she served as Vice President and Chair of the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Task Force and as a member of the editorial board of the American Journal of Arts Management. Her research interests include professional development for arts administrators, human resource development in arts & cultural institutions, diversity, equity, and inclusion in the arts, arts advocacy rhetoric, and cultural management in the African diaspora.


Conference Co-Chair Kerry Murphy, is the CEO and President of Artisphere. Under her leadership the festival is consistently recognized as a one of the country’s TOP Fine Art & Fine Craft Shows by Art Fair Sourcebook and Sunshine Artist magazine.  Kerry oversees all aspects of planning and implementing this three-day multi-disciplinary event that brings more than 70,000 people to downtown Greenville to enjoy a range of activities surrounding the arts. Prior to joining Artisphere, Kerry served as the Executive Director of Carolina Ballet Theatre, and as a Sponsorship Consultant for Southern Hospitality Group working with such local events as The Cliffs Challenge, a televised golf tournament, and the USA Cycling Pro Championships.

She currently serves as the Vice Chair of the City of Greenville’s Arts in Public Places Commission.  


Sara Collins. A leader in event management and strategic planning. Sara brings demonstrated success in event production, programing and sponsorship development.  As a trusted consultant, she helps bring to life inspired events including the Stone Arch Bridge Festival (Mpls), and Art in Bayfront Park (Duluth). Sara is a board member of Minnesota Festivals and Events Associate, and a frequent speaker on a range of topics within the events industry. 

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Seth Lewis is Director of the Festival of the Arts (Oklahoma City).  As Festival Director, he works with volunteer co-chairs to oversee and coordinate the planning and implementation of all Festival activities developed by over 40 volunteer committees.  In his role, he works with volunteer leaders to recruit and train approximately 400 volunteers and maintain a team environment that facilitates the volunteer/staff partnership necessary to produce a successful Festival. Seth formerly worked in sports entertainment with the OKC Dodgers and the hospitality and event industry in Oklahoma City.  


Ira L. Rosen is an Associate Professor with Temple University’s School of Sport, Tourism and Hospitality Management.  He teaches several event management courses and is the Program Director for the School’s award-winning Event Leadership Executive Certificate Program.  Additionally, for over thirty years he owned and operated Entertainment On Location, Inc. (EOL), a full-service event production and consulting company based in New Jersey.  Ira has done extensive work for major events and clients throughout the world. In September of 2005, he was inducted into the International Festivals and Events Association Hall of Fame, becoming one of only 60 people in the world to hold this honor.


Hilary-Morgan Watt is the Director of Digital Engagement at the Smithsonian Arts and Industries Building, previously managing digital engagement at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden and the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History. With 15 years of experience in museums and galleries, Ms. Watt has led digital strategy workshops across the Smithsonian and lectured at the State Department, George Mason University, and Georgetown University. A transplant from the Pacific Northwest, she completed her B.F.A. at Southern Oregon University, and completed her Masters in Museum Studies from the George Washington University (GWU). She is an active member of ArtTable and an Adjunct Professor at GWU, teaching “Museums & Social Media” in the Graduate Museum Studies program.

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2019 Conference Participants by Festival or Organziation

4 Bridges Arts Festival (TN)

An Occasion for the Arts (VA)

Ann Arbor Street Art Fair, the Original (MI)

Artisphere (SC)

Art-Linx (MD)

Art of Events (MN)

Central Pennsylvania Festival of the Arts (PA)

CherryArts (CO)

Cornell Art Museum Art on the Square (FL)

Engenius (AL)

Fountain Hills Chamber of Commerce (AZ)

Frederick Festival of the Arts (MD)

Fourth Avenue Street Fair (AZ)


Krasl Art Fair on the Bluff (MI)

Lenexa Art Fair (KS)

Mount Gretna Art Show (PA)

Mountain Art Festivals (CO)

Mountain Heritage Arts & Crafts Festival (WV)

Northern Virginia Fine Arts Festival (VA)

Oklahoma Festival of Arts (OK)

Prairie Village Art Show (KS)

Redlands Festival of Arts (CA)

Renaissance Craftables (NJ & PA)

Rittenhouse Square Fine Art Show (PA)

Rockville Arts Festival (MD)

Rose Squared Productions (NJ)

Saffire (TX)

Saint Louis Art Fair (MO)

Sedona Arts Festival (AZ)

Shenandoah Valley Art Center (VA)

Stockley Gardens Arts Festival (VA)

Summerfair Cincinnati (OH)

Waterford Fair (VA)

Vail Arts Festival (CO)

Zapplication (CO)

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