DC Arts Center Logo Contest

By Editorial Team on May 24, 2022

Deadline: Sun, 05 June 2022

Submit You Design


Did you know that DC Arts Center has only ever had two logos and that since 1994 our logo has remained unchanged? Our first logo featured the graphical depiction of an eye. Our current logo is a shield vibrantly displaying our trademark yellow and black behind our organization’s initials. Today, almost everyone who speaks of our organization does so in reference to those initials – DCAC.

With new and exciting things on the horizon, we’re looking for a new logo that honors our past and embraces our future.

That’s why we need you! As a community arts center dedicated to presenting first-quality art of all kinds, we want to give the fantastic talent in our community the chance to contribute to the public face of DC Arts Center. We’re seeking design submissions from local artists in the greater Washington, D.C., area to help us create a new logo and what will become the core of our future branding.

We’re a small institution, and we have limited resources. At the same time, we’re eager to work directly with our community on a meaningful project. It’s also part of our core organizational values to honor artists’ work in our community. So, if a design is selected, we’re proud to offer the artist chosen a $500 honorarium for their work and full credit for the design on our website. Our intention is to show our appreciation as best we can financially while also offering artists an opportunity to expand their portfolio and contribute to the history of a storied cultural institution.


  1. The purpose of the contest is to design a logo for DC Arts Center. This logo may be used in all media – including online, print, merchandise, and other visual collateral. (We’re so excited! It’s going to be everywhere!)

  2. All submitted work must be the entrant’s original work(s) and must not include, be based on, or derived from any pre-existing or third-party designs, trademarks, or copyrighted images. (We want to celebrate your individual creativity! We also want to seriously avoid any legal issues).

  3. All entries will become the property of DC Arts Center whether they are chosen as the winning logo or not. (We’ll never use your logo without credit or compensation. This just helps us to share your logo easily and quickly without having to gain permission each and every time during the decision-making process.)

  4. By submitting an entry, each entrant agrees that any and all intellectual property rights in the logo design are assigned to DC Arts Center. (We own the trademark and copyright for DCAC and District of Columbia Arts Center. The only way we can keep these and keep our name protected is to maintain the intellectual property rights of the visual representation of our organization.)

  5. All entrants acknowledge that they will not receive compensation unless their specific design is chosen. (We really wish we could pay everyone!)

  6. If your specific design is chosen, you will receive an honorarium of $500. (We know your design is worth so much more. Our modest stipend is simply a token of our deep gratitude and commitment to paying artists for their work at the level that is currently possible.)

  7. Following selection, DC Arts Center reserves the right, within its sole discretion, to either engage in an ongoing iterative process with the selected artist or to work independently from the artist to modify the logo chosen to better fit the organization’s needs. This includes but is not limited to the alteration of color, font, shape, size, orientation, width, height, etc. (Honestly, rarely is a logo perfect on the first go without some kind of dialogue.)

  8. Should no suitable submission be received, DC Arts Center reserves the right not to choose any contest submission and instead design its own logo independently. (It’s not you; it’s us. We promise.)

  9. Members of DC Arts Center staff will evaluate submitted logos. While input will be solicited from many stakeholders across the organization, the Executive Director will have the sole discretion to approve or reject any submission. (Someone has to make a decision, you know?)

  10. While all entrants will be notified of our decision, we regrettably do not have the infrastructure to provide feedback to those whose submissions were not selected. (We’re a small team of mostly part-time hourly staff.)


  • Hi-resolution original artwork is required. Submissions in a scalable vector version (e.g., in Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop, or InDesign) are preferred.

  • Hex Code Color Values

  • Brief explanation (300 words or less) of why you feel the logo best represents DCAC’s past while embracing its future.

Submissions will only be accepted via Submittable. Emailed submissions will not be accepted.