Pandemics, Art Fairs and the Coronavirus

8869200467?profile=originalDo we have an app for that? Nope, but Mark Loeb has some common sense ideas on how to handle the disruptions that may be in your future, whether artist or show organizer. Mark is trying to get ahead of the problem and has instituted a comprehensive approach for his 2020 events. Granted, most events have a cancellation policy already in place, but this new challenge calls for reinventing the policy.

CANCELLATION POLICY for Integrity Events

We are pushing back payment deadlines to six weeks prior to each show.

What happens if you cancel after paying your booth rent? 

Six weeks before move in- We will issue a full cash refund.

Three to six weeks before move in- You may elect a 50% refund or a free booth at next years show.

Within 3 weeks of move in- No refunds (we will have paid all of our bills and likely won't be able to replace you). If you have a health issue we will consider that and try to help.

• What happens if we cancel, or are forced for health and safety reasons to cancel?

Six weeks before move in- We will issue a full cash refund.

Three to six weeks before move in- we will return two thirds of your booth rent and apply the balance to next year at that same event.

Within 3 weeks of move in- No cash refunds (we will have paid all of our bills). We will apply this year's rent to the next three years- 1/3 each. That way you will get your refund and we will still have enough to run the shows properly each year.



In a move designed to give artists more security and peace of mind, Integrity Shows, which organizes the Belle Isle Art Fair and Funky Ferndale Art Fair, just announced a new policy in case the coronavirus hits metro Detroit and requires cancellations of events

The new policy provides artists with clear, time-based  reimbursement or credits on booth rents for Integrity art fairs, and extended deadlines to pay for shows.   “We want artists to feel supported and protected, in these uncertain times,” said Mark Loeb, president of Detroit-based Integrity Shows.  “And we want to be the most artist-centric shows, and proactive, thoughtful and transparent in how we run our art fairs.” 

The new policy applies specifically to Covid-19 and applies to the 2020 season only. Full details of the announced policy are shown below.

“Despite some close calls, we have been fortunate in 23 years of art fairs never to have canceled an event,” Loeb said.  

Integrity Shows organizes fine juried art fairs in and near Detroit and creative community cultural events including the Kensington Art Fair on Memorial Day Weekend, Palmer Park Art Fair June 6 and 7; Belle Isle Art Fair Aug. 1 and 2 and the Funky Ferndale Art Fair in September.   All the art fairs are run in partnership with local nonprofits, parks organizations and community groups. 

More information is at

Contact Mark directly:

What is happening around the world: 

An Update on How COVID-19 Is Impacting the Art World

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  • I'm waitlisted for 2 of the 3 (it happens:), but will report back on 4Bridges in April.

  • Thanks for that, Cat. Are you participating in those events? I am so glad about Winter Park going forward since it is the next "biggie" on the calendar. Anymore updating I'd love to hear.

    I am traveling, was in 3 airports yesterday (in the U.S.) and nothing was askance. No masks, no temperatures being taken. Staff said the numbers were down, but all was calm. Fingers crossed.

  • I think this is the best website to keep up on the number of cases of Covid19 by location, as well as the number of deaths and people who have recovered:

    Many shows have sent out emails to artists explaining their plan. Winter Park, Fort Worth, 4 Bridges and others are a "go" at this point. They are putting sanitizing hand cleanser stands and other measures into place such as plenty of places to wash hands, signage about hygiene, etc.

    I'm hoping spring is warmer than usual since the virus cannot survive/perpetuate in the heat (same as flu - that's why there aren't cases of flu in the summer)

    As others have noted, wash your hands, and stay informed :)


  • and this from CERF+ with a good link to their Facebook page on how to help:

    Early Tuesday, at least one tornado ripped across Benton, Davidson, Putnam, and Wilson counties, killing at least 24 people in Tennessee and injuring dozens more. Our hearts and thoughts are with those affected by the tornado.

    CERF+ is responding by connecting with local arts and disaster networks to identify the most urgent needs in the arts community and provide emergency relief assistance. We will post situational updates on our Facebook page.


    CERF+ Emergency Relief for Artists Working In Craft Disciplines


    CERF+ offers emergency relief assistance to craft, folk, and traditional artists that have experienced recent career-threatening emergencies, including natural disasters. To learn more, click here or contact us at


    Stay safe and let us know if we can do anything to help.


    Cameron Baxter Lewis

    Director of Emergency Relief and Recovery Services

  • More questions? I just received this good link from the Michigan State University Extension that includes some curated articles to help you with your personal health, including 

    And an updated link to track the coronavirus in particular:

  • Today I sent emails to news at MSNBC and CNN asking that they report on coronavirus cases who survive and maybe some personal history clips rather than just reporting number of new cases and "two more deaths in timbuktu".

  • I'm a photographer, and while I haven't lined up any general art fairs in the next few months, coronavirus concerns have definitely had an impact on some of the events I usually set up at. I have had a major professional conference in southern California, where I was supposed to be an exhibitor, cancelled with less than a week's notice. I've had two smaller exhibitions and a fundraiser event indefinitely postponed. I was also informed that a major national professional conference scheduled for April in Austin will most likely be cancelled as well. I have yet to receive any information regarding refunds for booth rent / gallery space, although I do anticipate getting that money back without too much difficulty. However, I have spent a substantial amount to have larger prints made especially for these exhibitions that are difficult to sell in other venues. I'm anticipating losing at least many thousands do to the health concerns (in sunk costs, storage costs, and lost sales). It's been very disappointing and frustrating, but in all honesty, for the sake of everyone's health, I'm pretty sure the event organizers made the right call.

  • That policy seems so fair and generous to the artists.  Thank you to Mark Loeb.

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