123rd Annual Exhibition General Submissions

The Society of Scottish Artists invites both members and non-members to apply to be part of the 123rd SSA Annual Exhibition at the Royal Scottish Academy, one of the largest shows of contemporary art in Scotland.

In this open call we are accepting work in the form of painting, printmaking, photography, drawing, sculpture and all other media not listed under the separate INSTALLATION, PROPOSALS AND PERFORMANCE SUBMISSIONS and SSA | CUTLOG categories.

The SSA Annual Exhibition at the RSA in Edinburgh showcases the best of contemporary art to audiences in excess of 30,000 people. The exhibition is produced and supported entirely by artists with no public funding. It will take place from 1 November – 23 November 2021.

*Under the current government guidelines, we are anticipating that the exhibition will go ahead in the gallery, but we do reserve the right to make any amendments if the guidelines change between now and the exhibition dates, including but not limited to holding the exhibition online. Please note that we are unfortunately unable to exhibit any works using sound because of Covid regulations.*


This general call is for painting, printmaking, photography, drawing, sculpture and all other media not listed under the separate open calls. Please see www.s-s-a.org for more details of the separate open calls for installation, proposals and performance, and SSA | Cutlog.

Open for Entry: Friday 4 June 2021
Entry Deadline: Saturday 31 July 2021, midnight
Pre-selection notification: Wednesday 1 September 2021

Artwork delivery:
Saturday 23rd Oct – Installations/large works – back door | Smaller works – front door
Sunday 24 October – Smaller works -front door
Monday 25 & Tuesday 26 October 2021 – 30 x 30 – front door 

Private View: Sunday 31 October 2021
Exhibition open to public: 1 November – 23 November 2021
Collection of unsold work: Thursday 25 November 2021


The maximum number of entries includes submissions to both open calls (the installation / proposals / performance open call and the general submissions open call).

Non members entry fee 
Maximum artwork entries: 3
First or single entry price: £15.00
Up to 2 artworks: £30.00
Up to 3 artworks: £45.00

Artist, Student and Graduate Members entry fee
Maximum Artwork Entries: 3
Free Entry

Professional Members entry fee
Maximum Artwork Entries: 4
Free Entry

Entry Information

The Society of Scottish Artists is an artist-led, not-for-profit organisation with over 1200 members from across Scotland and beyond. Run by artists for artists, the Society is led by a team of volunteers, each elected by the members, who work together to create opportunities for artists.

The SSA Annual Exhibition at the Royal Scottish Academy, Edinburgh, showcases the best of contemporary art to audiences in excess of 30,000 people. The exhibition is produced and supported entirely by artists with no public funding.


  • All entries must be submitted through Zealous HERE by the stated deadlines. Only works that have been pre-selected via the online submission process will be accepted on the hand-in day.
  • There are no restrictions on size, discipline or media.
  • Professional members of the SSA may submit up to four works in total across all categories. 
  • Artist, student and graduate members and non-members of the SSA may submit up to three works in total across all categories.
  • Non-members will be charged £15 per submission and can submit up to three works.
  • There is no entry charge for SSA members. Anyone wishing to join the Society or renew their membership can do so online here


  • Up to six images per artwork can be submitted.
  • Please ensure all artwork details are correct – titles, prices etc. submitted at this stage will be used for labels, the exhibition catalogue, and online.
  • A link to online video or other related supporting materials can be included in the submission. If the selection committee requires a password to view the work online, please ensure this is submitted along with the link. 
  • Image files should be JPG or PNG and no more than 3MB large. The upload time will depend on your internet connection speed so please be patient. If you are having problems uploading your images please use image-editing software to resize your image to approximately 1600 pixels wide and then save as a new file. 
  • If the artwork is from an edition please include how many are available from this edition and the edition number.
  • Save your image files with your name and the title of your artwork as the file name, e.g. JoeBloggs_Untitled1.jpg.  Do not include invalid characters such as ‘ ” & % * ( ) < > / \ ~ # + =


  • No work will be exhibited that has also been shown or will be shown in the RSA Annual Exhibition (excluding online exhibitions), RSA New Contemporaries, or that has previously been shown in any SSA, VAS or RSW Annual Exhibitions.
  • No reproductions or copies of any kind will be accepted. 
  • Artists do not need to be Scottish or have a Scottish connection to exhibit. Please note, however, that all pre-selected works need to be delivered to and collected from the gallery by the artist or a nominated representative.


  • Pre-selection results will be available by the dates stated above.
  • Selection of certain works may be made with conditions and suggestions by the curatorial committee, and may require a site visit and/or further discussion. If this is the case, we will contact you directly.
  • The judging panel’s decision is final and there is no appeals process.
  • We regret that we cannot offer feedback on the results of the selection.


  • Pre-selection results will be available on the online submission site by the dates stated above. 
  • Works that pass the online pre-selection process must be delivered to the gallery by the date stated above.
  • All works that are pre-selected online are still subject to final selection by the panel on delivery to the gallery.
  • Work selected for the exhibition will be subject to an administration fee of £5 per work for SSA members and £15 per work for non-members to be paid on delivery.
  • Works that are not included in the final selection should be uplifted from the gallery by the date stated above. The Society has no storage space so works not hung must be collected by this date. Any work not uplifted becomes the property of the SSA and may be disposed of or recycled.


  • Where two or more artists are collaborating on a single work, the submission will count as one of the permitted entries from each of the artists. Artists submitting collaborative work can use the rest of their permitted entries to submit solo works.


  • The gallery is not manned by the Society’s staff outwith the advertised times, and access cannot be arranged.
  • All packaging materials must be removed from the gallery.
  • There is no car park at the gallery. Where possible please arrive on foot or by public transport. Vehicular access will only be allowed for the delivery of large-scale or heavy works.
  • Please attach a label on card/stiff paper to your work using string so that it can hang freely.  The label should contain the following information –Artist Name | Artwork Title | Medium | Price | Edition Number (if applicable).
  • Please also attach a permanent label to the reverse of your work with Artist Name | Artwork Title | Medium | Price | Edition Number (if applicable) | Contact Phone Number
  • Our recommended carriers are:
  • Van GoGo2 (Stuart Horsburgh) – vangogo2@gmail.com (Edinburgh, Glasgow, the Borders)
  • John Lawrence – johnlawrence48@icloud.com (Aberdeenshire, Dundee, Fife)
  • Ali MacAuley: 0131 4433525, 07740 941715 (Edinburgh, Glasgow)
  • Aardvark Art Services – aardvarkartservices.com (UK)
  • McAdie and Reeve – www.mcadie-and-reeve.co.uk (Orkney)
  • Irish Art Services – www.irishartservices.com (Ireland)
  • Art Cargo – https://artcargo.co.uk (UK)
  • Picture Post – picture-post.webnode.com (UK)
  • Central Link Couriers – www.central-linkcouriers.co.uk (UK, Europe)
  • You may be required to install your own work depending on the scale. You will be contacted in advance if this is the case. 
  • Artists sending work from outside the UK are responsible for any customs and duty charges, declarations and other related documentation for the artwork both entering and leaving the UK, and for ensuring that work is received at the gallery by the specified time. The SSA is unable to pay import duty or related fees on any submitted work. 


  • Whilst every possible care will be taken of works submitted, the Society cannot be responsible for any loss or damage incurred during the exhibition or in transit to and from it. The Society does not insure the exhibits; artists are advised to insure their own work.


  • Professional members of the SSA will be charged a reduced commission rate of 35% on the sale price of all work sold in the exhibition.
  • Artist, student, graduate members and non-members will be charged a commission of 40% on the sale price of all work sold in the exhibition.
  • Any private sale must be intimated to the sales agent of the SSA and will be subject to the same level of commission. A sale made through the Society shall have precedence. 


  • Please ensure a high standard of presentation of works. No metal frames will be accepted. Any framing should be professionally finished and contemporary. 
  • Works with wet paint will not be accepted; the artist is liable for the cost of any damage caused to other works by such items.
  • All works being handed in must be free of all hooks and cords and clearly marked ‘this way up’ where appropriate. The artist is liable for the cost of any damage caused to other works by protruding hooks and fixings. Mirror plates for hanging are provided by the Society.


  • Artists must provide their own floor-standing plinths or display equipment at the time of delivery.
  • All display equipment must arrive in good condition and ready for use as no painting is permitted within the gallery.
  • Any specialist display and hanging mechanisms must be clearly outlined in the submission proposal and any extra costs incurred should be covered by the artist.
  • Selected artists must supply their own electronic equipment if needed at the point of delivery.
  • All electronic equipment must be in good working order and PAT-tested prior to handing in.
  • All equipment must be labelled with the artist’s name and contact number.


  • Works cannot be removed until the end of the exhibition.
  • The gallery is not manned by the Society’s staff outwith the advised return date and times, and access to collect works cannot be arranged.
  • The SSA reserves the right to sell any works not collected after the end of the exhibition. Any costs incurred in storing uncollected work will be passed on to the artist.
  • Artists are responsible for arranging the collection of their own work if delivered by carrier.


  • It will be assumed that photographic reproduction of all works submitted and use of images for promotion or marketing purposes by the Society is allowed by the artist unless otherwise indicated.
Image: 121st Annual Exhibition, credit Rebecca Milling