It’s not all about the words. Jacket and cover art, typography, and interior illustrations play an important part in the making of books. To celebrate the many contributions of visual artists, the Ridges & Rivers Book Festival (sponsored by the Driftless Writing Center and McIntosh Memorial Library) invites all artists to craft work inspired by the world of books. It’s a chance to have fun, be creative, have your art on display, and win valuable prizes.


• All ages are welcome to submit

•All elements must be the original work of the submitter. Use of clip art is prohibited, and no elements should conflict with any existing copyrighted works.

•Artists may not submit more than one design.

•If the entry is more than 20 pounds, it must be discussed with Maggie Strittmater prior to submission. Contact Maggie at

•The work should fit the category (see provided prompts) and be appropriate for public display.

•By submitting your artwork, you authorize the book festival and its partners to post your entry on our websites indefinitely, and grant the right to use and display prints of your design for marketing purposes.

•Media/tools are at the discretion of the artist.


•The festival does not assume responsibility or liability for materials exhibited in library facilities, and each individual or group is responsible for their own insurance coverage of the exhibit if needed.

•The exhibit must include a clearly visible sign or title card identifying the individual or group responsible for the exhibit. Contact information for the artist should be included. An artist’s statement is also required. For an example of this, go to

•Exhibitors must supply all materials needed for installation.

•Works are to be submitted the week of April 10 – 14 of 2023. Please sign up online or in person for a general time to drop off your work at the McIntosh Memorial Library.

•Digital art must be sent in a .jpg or .png format to Maggie at

Art Gallery 

(Displayed April 28-30, 2023)

Submit your artwork for display in the book festival Art Gallery, which is located inside Encore, but it won’t be judged in the contest for the chance to win prizes. It’s a great opportunity for visitors to see your artwork in the community. It’s a chance to have fun but not have your artwork judged!

Art Contest 

(Displayed April 28-30, 2023)

You must indicate whether or not your artwork should be judged in the contest. The judging will be done by both visitors to the festival and a panel of three judges. The winner of the People’s Choice Award will be displayed in the McIntosh Memorial Library for the month of May and receive a ribbon and $100 in Viroqua Bucks. The winner of the Judges’ Choice Award will also be displayed in the McIntosh Memorial Library for the month of May and will receive a ribbon, a basket of goodies from local businesses, and $250 in Viroqua Bucks. The winners will be announced on Sunday, April 30, 2023, 9:00 am at the pancake breakfast at the Viroqua United Methodist Church. Judging will occur on Saturday, April 29.

Suggested prompts:

 •Where ideas take flight

 •What makes a book?

 •Design a cover for the book you always wanted to write

 •Design a cover for your favorite book


 •Illustrate all or some of the things that go into creating, making, finishing, or selling a book

 •Illustrate what a book means to you or to a society’s culture in general. Be literal or abstract.

 •Make art from old unused books